Body Dysmorphic Disorder and Suicide

by: Ryan Halvorson

According to a report in the July issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry (2006; 163, 1280–82), persons suffering from body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) are 45 times more likely to commit suicide than nonsufferers. BDD causes individuals to become obsessed with their appearance and to develop a distorted self-image.

Researchers studied 185 subjects over 4 years and found that, during each year, 58% considered suicide and 2.6% actually attempted to kill themselves (two participants were successful). “The good news is that there are two forms of treatment [antidepressant medication and cognitive behavior therapy] that seem to be helpful with this disorder,” said study co-author Katherine A. Phillips, as reported by Reuters. “This just underscores the importance of recognizing this illness and recognizing that it’s a severe illness that can potentially respond very well to mental health treatment.”

—Ryan Halvorson

IDEA Fitness Journal , Volume 3, Issue 10

© 2006 by IDEA Health & Fitness Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.

About the Author

Ryan Halvorson

Ryan Halvorson IDEA Author/Presenter

Ryan Halvorson is the publications assistant for IDEA Health & Fitness Association. He is a speaker and regular contributor to health and fitness publications and a certified personal trainer.

1 Comment

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  • John smuels

    With all the shouting going on about daily fitness care crisis, many are probably finding it difficult to concentrate, much less understand the cause of the problems confronting us.
    Commented Dec 10, 2012