[caption id="attachment_3350" align="alignright" width="305" caption="Nose Job"][/caption]
If you’ve been obsessing about the size and shape of your nose and have considered a nose job, your surgeon may request a screening to make sure you are not suffering from a mental illness called body dysmorphic disorder (BDD). One of the common signs of BDD is an unnatural preoccupation with slight or even imagined defects of the appearance, which may include the nose shape or size, excess body fat or even breast size. Many people with BDD tend to have a history of wanting or undergoing cosmetic surgery to “fix” their appearance and are often returning to the doctor’s office for more procedures because they are simply unhappy with the outcome.
According to the results of a recent study, up to one in three nose job patients have BDD and are actually fueling their problem. According to David B. Sarwer, associate professor of psychology at the Center for Human Appearance at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennyslvania, “Patients with more severe BDD struggle to maintain social relationships and have difficulty getting to work or staying employed. Almost all of us will get up in the morning and look in the mirror and see something in our appearance we may not like or wish looked different. But for patients with B.D.D., that thought never leaves their mind.”
He points out that BDD is an unhealthy obsession with one’s appearance. The recent report that evaluated 266 patients, about 43% showed signs of the disorder, even though their noses appeared relatively normal.
If you are considering getting a nose job, take some time to look at these nose job before and after pictures so that you have some realistic expectations about the outcome of your procedure, and make sure that you’re doing it for the right reasons. Poor self-esteem or a lack of confidence cannot be “fixed” with plastic surgery alone, and any form of obsession may be a sign of mental illness.