Living With OCD Being preoccupied with muscle development may involve a disturbance in body image similar to anorexia. Bigorexia muscular dysmorphia is now affecting hundreds of thousands of men. The causes are not known but two key ideas revolve around bigorexia as a form of obsessive-compulsive behavior and secondly, the effect of the media putting the same type of pressure on men to conform to an ideal shape has been the case with women for years. The Main Characteristic of Bigorexia The main characteristic of bigorexia is the thought that no matter how hard you try your body is never muscular enough. The condition is recognized as more common in men although some women bodybuilders have also been reported with similar symptoms.
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Written By: Mike Samuels October 18th, To many, the physiques that stand on stage at the Olympia every year are the absolute pinnacle of the human form. Muscular, defined, balanced and lean — just writing the words forms an image of beauty in your head. While things may look great when watching from afar, the mental battles that physique competitors can face are often exhausting, all-consuming, draining and downright miserable. In fact, body dysmorphia is a big issue in the bodybuilding world.
This article is digging deeper though, and looking at the small percentage of people in the bodybuilding world who have dysmorphia that overtakes their life. What is Body Dysmorphia? The Body Dysmorphic Foundation BDF has three classes for body dysmorphia — muscle dysmorphic disorder, male pattern baldness and height. At least two of the following should be met — — The uncontrollable focus on pursuing the usual training regimen causes the person to miss out on career, social, and other activities.
Actually, no. A study from the US found that 2. The research shows that BDD is much more common among bodybuilders. But bear in mind that BDD sufferers constantly compare themselves to others and so may find this experience extremely intimidating. The condition is also often linked with social anxiety disorders  and so stepping on stage may not actually be that appealing. Playing the Blame Game It would be easy to place the blame for BDD solely in the hands of the media, and their portrayal of bodybuilders.
Or, in more recent times, it would be natural to think that social media has a huge role to play. The pressure for people to look amazing has certainly never been greater, and even just a decade ago, the only time you saw people who were ripped, lean and muscular would have been in bodybuilding magazines, or on Internet forums, which you might have visited once a day. This aside though, research actually shows that the likelihood of developing BDD may actually be largely due to genetics.
Slight physique-related concerns, or worry regarding physical appearance is mostly environmental, but, much like Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, full-blown BDD appears to be significantly dictated by genetics. As BDD has only been recognized as a condition relatively recently, the research on the most effective treatment methods is somewhat lacking.
It does appear that most of the literature points toward Cognitive Behavioral Therapy CBT as being the best course of action. Everyone involved in the physique and bodybuilding industries will feel a little insecure about their bodies from time to time, freak out if they gain some fat, and have a constant desire to build more muscle.
Bigorexia: bodybuilding and muscle dysmorphia.
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