The rise in facial dysmorphia and appearance anxiety

The rise in facial dysmorphia and appearance anxiety

Experts are concerned that ‘Love Island-style’ beauty standards added to anxiety caused by the pandemic are causing an increase in the number of people developing Facial Dysmorphia, a distorted view of their facial appearance.

The first survey on Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) in young people to be carried out in England reports the condition to be on the rise. The research, by NatCen on behalf of the NHS, found cases of BDD were highest in girls aged 17-19 years old, with one in 18 young women experiencing BDD, with particular emphasis on facial features.

Cosmetic Doctor and Etre Vous Expert Dr Nestor Demosthenous has seen a steep rise in patients exhibiting appearance anxiety and a distorted impression of their looks.

“Since we reopened post-pandemic, we have been inundated with demand for appointments from existing and new patients,” says Dr Demosthenous. “It is a reflection of our anxious society that patients are even more critical of themselves than previously.

“Red flags are raised for me when I hear a strong disconnect in the way a person describes their issue and reality. A patient may use words like ‘hate’ to talk about ‘deep forehead wrinkles’, when in fact I am looking at a very mild line.”

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