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Treating body dysmorphic disorders (Part 1 & 2)

1h 34m

David Veale


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Contents: Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) is defined as a preoccupation with a perceived defect in one’s appearance, which is not noticeable to others. The preoccupation is associated with a distorted felt body image with many “safety seeking” behaviours such as mirror gazing, skin-picking, ruminating or constant comparing of one’s perceived defect to others. People with BDD often use strategies to camouflage and avoid situations and activities. They may have a poor quality of life, are socially isolated and people with BDD are at high risk of committing suicide. Cognitive behaviour therapy and SSRI medications are recommended for treating BDD.
Learning Objectives: By the end of the seminar participants will:

  1. Recognize and diagnose BDD in DSM5 and planned ICD11.
  2. Recognize the presentation of BDD in genital body image.
  3. Understand a cognitive behavioural model of BDD and the factors that maintain the symptoms including comparing self with others; being excessive self-focused; camouflaging one’s appearance; checking, monitoring and avoiding social threats such as shame, rejection and ridicule from others.
  4. Assess and help clients wanting cosmetic procedures
  5. Understand factors in CBT with a focus on ceasing ruminating, comparing and checking, dropping of avoidance and safety seeking behaviours; and imagery rescripting for aversive memories.

Produced in 2020
Key references: Phillips, K (2017) Body Dysmorphic Disorder: Advances in Research and Clinical Practice. Oxford.
Veale, D. & Neziroglu (2010) Body dysmorphic disorder: a treatment manual. Wiley: Chichester.
Veale, D., Willson, R, Clarke, A. (2009) Overcoming Body Image Problems (including BDD). Robinson.

David Veale


David Veale is a Consultant Psychiatrist and leads a national outpatient and residential unit service for people with severe treatment refractory Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) at the South London and Maudsley Trust and for inpatients at the Priory Hospital North London.

He is a Visiting Professor in Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapies in the Department of Psychology at King’s College London. He is a member of the group revising the diagnostic guidelines for ICD11 for OCD and Related Disorders for the World Health Organisation. He was a member of the group that wrote the NICE guidelines on OCD and BDD in 2006 and chaired the NICE Evidence Update on OCD and BDD in 2013. He has authored or co-authored over 100 empirically based articles, 6 books, 13 book chapters, and 35 teaching articles or reviews. He is an Honorary Fellow of the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies, a Fellow of the British Psychological Society and Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. He is a Trustee of the UK national charities, OCD Action and the BDD Foundation.

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