Body image and body dysmorphia in men tend to be a neglected area of research, as these issues are more common in women. Men think that they need to be tall, lean and muscular, have a large penis, and a full head of hair. It is important for men to be confident about the way they look and to talk to someone about how they feel to avoid feelings of depression.
Muscle Dysmorphic Disorder
Muscle Dysmorphic Disorder (MDD) is when you are preoccupied with not being muscular or lean enough. Wrestlers and bodybuilders tend to deal with this issue more frequently. It is characterized by things like spending too much time weightlifting to increase muscle mass, overtraining or training when hurt, abusing steroids, engaging in disordered eating, and excessive consumption of supplements. Significant distress and intense mood swings are often the results of MDD. It is important to understand the distinction between MDD and bodybuilding. While bodybuilders go through intense training, they are not preoccupied with their appearance to the point of causing themselves mental and emotional suffering and a decreased quality of life.
Male Pattern Baldness
Baldness is very common among men. It involves the thinning of hair on the scalp with age. Even though it is just a genetic variation, men feel they will not be desirable without a full head of hair. In essence, fear around balding has more to do with the loss of masculinity than the loss of hair. Technically, there are “solutions” to the problem of male pattern baldness, such as hairpieces, hats, medication, and hair transplants. Even so, it still does not solve the long-term problem of not being able to grow your own hair, leaving many men feeling hopeless and out of control.
How Men Can Treat Body Dysmorphia
There are ways of dealing with body dysmorphias associated with men that don’t involve spending hours at the gym and seeking out wigs and expensive surgeries. One option is using medication. Medications commonly prescribed for OCD can also work for body dysmorphia, helping to decrease unhealthy and obsessive thoughts. These medications can soothe chemical imbalances that cause repetitive thinking and help redirect focus into other areas of life. Therapy is another option that has proven to be significantly helpful for many men suffering from body dysmorphia. In therapy, men can learn to identify and process the trauma that instigated their dysmorphic thoughts. Furthermore, engaging in therapy can help men to link their urges to the feelings or emotions behind them. Body dysmorphia needs to be taken seriously. Seeking help can teach you to like yourself, effectively changing your life for the better.
Body dysmorphia is a serious issue for men, despite the common belief that this is a problem experienced primarily by women. Men have their own insecurities, whether they be related to their hair, muscle mass, penis size, or height. When body dysmorphia is left untreated, it can lead to overworking your muscles, spending a lot of money on hair surgeries, as well as countless other physical and health problems. At Alta Loma, we will do a full psychiatric assessment to see what is triggering you to take out your insecurities on yourself. Located in Georgetown, Texas, our transformative treatment facility will cater to your psychiatric needs through nutritional classes, individualized therapy, life and coping skills education, therapeutic recreational activities, and more. It’s time for you to take control of your health and life, as you are the only one who can. We are here to point you in the right direction. To learn more about our services, call (866) 457-3843.