Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) Therapy and Counseling • Silicon Valley (San Jose/Saratoga) and Sacramento Valley (Roseville)

At the Cognitive Behavior Therapy Center of Silicon Valley, we offer cognitive behavior therapy for Body Dysmorphic Disorder. Our approach to treating body dysmorphic disorder is practical, goal-oriented, compassionate, and scientifically-based while focusing on your individual needs.

What is Body Dysmorphic Disorder?

If you have Body Dysmorphic Disorder, you may be overly concerned with a real or perceived flaw in your physical appearance such as your hair, skin, nose, stomach or another body part. Your thoughts may cause severe emotional distress and interfere with your daily functioning, causing you to may miss work or school and avoid social situation. You may isolate yourself from family and friends because you fear they will notice your defects. You may undergo plastic surgery to correct perceived flaws but never find satisfaction with the results. Body dysmorphic disorder often co-occurs with major depression and social anxiety disorder.

Symptoms of Body Dysmorphic Disorder

  • Obsessive thoughts about real or imagined flaws in your appearance that can last for hours or up to an entire day
  • Compulsive behaviors to try to hide or improve your flaws such as camouflaging (with body position, clothing, makeup, hair or hats), comparing your body part to other people, seeking surgery, excessive mirror checking or avoiding mirrors altogether, skin picking, excessive grooming, excessive exercise and/or changing clothes excessively
  • Anxiety, depression, shame and chronic low self-esteem
  • Feeling self-conscious in social environments and thinking that others notice your perceived defect(s)
  • Avoidance behaviors such as staying home, missing work or avoiding social situations

Cognitive Behavioral Model of Body Dysmorphic Disorder

Body Dysmorphic Disorder is on the OCD Spectrum and has obsessive-compulsive features that are quite similar to those of OCD. Like OCD, the compulsive and avoidant behaviors that you use to reduce your anxiety actually reinforces and worsens your obsessions. You may get temporary relief from engaging in compulsions and avoidance but the problem comes back and worsens over time.

Cognitive Behavioral Treatment of Body Dysmorphic Disorder

The treatment for body dysmorphic disorder is similar to treatment for OCD. Cognitive behavior therapy for body dysmorphic disorder include Exposure and Response Prevention and Cognitive Restructuring. Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) will teach you to recognize irrational thoughts and change negative thinking patterns. You will learn to identify unhealthy ways of thinking and behaving and replace them with more helpful ones. CBT will focus on helping you reduce compulsive behaviors and avoidance and tolerating the anxiety that results. You will learn coping skills to reduce anxiety and depression, increase self-esteem and reduce avoidance.

How to Get Help for Body Dysmorphic Disorder

We are located in Saratoga on the border of San Jose and Saratoga just 1/2 mile from Highway 85. With our convenient location near highway 85, we serve the Silicon Valley communities of San Jose, Saratoga, Mountain View, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, Los Gatos, Los Altos, Cupertino and Campbell, CA. Contact us at (408) 384-8404 for more information on how we can help you overcome Body Dysmorphic Disorder.