The King of BDD MJ

Poster Child for BDD

Please do not try this at home..

We've all seen them. The disclaimers during commercials, in real tiny print at the bottom, on reality programs such as; Worlds Dumbest Criminal, or The Jackass program, "please do not try this at home". While airing commercials for erectile dysfunction or sleeping aids "please consult your physician", race cars tearing down a road, "please do not attempt" and lastly on beer commercials "please drink responsibly".

Commercial spots are expensive some as high as $3 million for a 30 second spot, especially around Super Bowl time. Therefore, sponsors use disclaimers to cover themselves for any action taken by those who may injure themselves while trying to duplicate something they've seen on TV. My son has aptly named the disclaimer "the idiot clause", because only an impressionable child or moronic dullard would do such a thing.

DIY Plastic Surgery?

Now this clause maybe required on the Internet and plastic surgeon office walls. Yes..there is an increasing amount of people out there injecting, prodding and poking themselves in search of the lost fountain of youth. This is mere vanity, but there's a group that tread a dangerous line between vanity and mental illness.

In this decade alone plastic surgeons have earned billions in performing these operations. Since 2008 the request for these procedures has decreased, and people are opting for less invasive and faster procedures such as botox injections (increased 239%). The physicians take last year, a mere $12 billion dollars, some downturn!

So those, addicted to plastic surgery, and can no longer afford the less expensive procedures are turning to "do it yourself methods". While researching this subject I came across several websites touting this as a new alternative to all those expensive "medical procedures". Yeah...right. I hope to maybe sway at least one person from possible irreversible disfigurement or death with this piece.

Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)

Psychiatrist, Dr. David Veale, who works at a celebrity clinic in Britain called Priory, feels that our obsession with celebrity culture and fame drive some people to focus on the outward appearance and view themselves in a totally distorted manner. Extreme cases have been labeled body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), affecting more than 1 million people in Britain alone. The victims of this disorder are constantly comparing themselves to models, television and movie stars.

Dr. Veale once treated a man who performed a nose job on himself with a chisel and replaced the cartilage he removed with a chicken bone. Other patients have cut their stomachs while performing DIY tummy tucks, and some have glued their ears back. During my research for this hub I read unbelievable stories; a woman who ran out of silicone and injected her face with common cooking oil, another woman followed the directions of some guy on YouTube and injected her face with a $10.00 bottle of silicone that was for exterior use only. These stories are incredible, but unfortunately true.


BDD is sometimes referred to as body dysmorphia or dysmorphic syndrome - labeled an anxiety disorder in which the affected person is obsessively concerned or preoccupied by a perceived defect in their physical appearance. BDD is also linked to the eating disorders anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa.

The person is suffering a debilitating or excessive fear of judgement by others, may complain of specific feature flaws, single feature flaws or vague feature flaws in his / her appearance. This can cause some to experience severe depression and anxiety, social withdrawal or complete social isolation. Its been estimated that 1 - 2 % of the worlds population meet all the criteria for diagnosed BDD.

Triggers of BDD

  1. Genetic predisposition - certain genes may predispose an individual to BDD
  2. Brain - some could suffer abnormalities in certain regions of the brain
  3. Visual processing - distorted view of his or her actual appearance - distorted perception of ones self.
  4. Obsessive-Compulsive disorder- practice of ritual behavior. A genetic predisposition to this disorder may make people more susceptible to BDD.
  5. Teasing and criticism- extreme levels of teasing, abuse or bullying during childhood can trigger BDD. Especially from supposed friends, siblings or parents.
  6. Parenting - authority figures who place too much emphasis on outward appearance may trigger the genetically predisposed.
  7. Life experience - neglect, physical and/or sexual trauma and / or abuse, insecurity and rejection.

There is no "idiot clause" that would stop a person with this type of disorder, and no doubt suffers need to fix the problems on the inside. There seems to be a big self esteem issue when one is not satisfied with who we are and our station in life. As with anorexia and bulimia nervosa BDD is a distorted view of ones self.

We live in such a disposable, shallow and superficial era. People feel entitled to everything, they want it now and are willing to suffer the consequences later. The extreme that some are willing to chance to achieve "perfection", is horrifying. Nowadays breast augmentation is what the wealthy give as sweet sixteen or graduation gifts to their daughters, there is something very wrong with this picture.

We've become a people who want a quick fix for everything, don't like your face change it, hate your breast size super size them or firm them up, don't like your butt plump it up! Whatever happened to learning to deal with what you were given, and developing a personality to go along with the outside?

Hey with today's technology and if you have the dough go for it. But all things in moderation. I sometimes joke; that when some of these people hit the pearly gates God won't recognize them. Please ladies and gents take heed, vanity thy name is mankind.


  • Obsessive thoughts about a perceived appearance defect
  • Compulsive behavior related to perceived appearance defect
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Delusional thoughts related to perceived appearance defects
  • Withdrawal from family friends, self imposed isolation
  • Suicidal (at a rate of 80%)
  • Chronic low self-esteem
  • Possible panic attacks
  • Self-conscious in social gatherings; paranoia that others notice and mock there perceived defects
  • Recluse behavior - refusing to leave home or leave only at certain times like at night.
  • Inability to work or perform well academically due to preoccupation with appearance.
  • Co-dependence on others close to them
  • Unable to initiate or maintain relationships
  • Alcohol and/or drug abuse (or self medicate)
  • Repetitive behavior - re-applying already heavy makeup, regularly checking appearance in the mirror. Sometimes seeing varying images of self upon each inspection constantly checking reflective surfaces.

Compulsive Behaviors Associated with BDD

  • Inability to look at one's own reflection or photos, also removal of mirrors in home
  • Camouflaging of imagined defect; with cosmetics, wearing baggy clothing or wearing hats
  • Distraction techniques - diverting attention away from imagined defect; wearing extravagant clothing or excessive jewelry.
  • Excessive grooming; skin picking, combing hair plucking eyebrows
  • Compulsive skin touching especially to the perceived defect area
  • Excessive dieting, exercising
  • Self harm
  • Comparing appearance; to that of others or obsessive viewing of favorite celebrities or models that they wish to resemble.
  • Obsessive reading; of books, articles and websites that relate to the perceived defect.
  • Extreme cases; performing procedures or surgery on themselves.
  • Excessive enema use

Injected face with cooking oil

More by this Author

Comments 6 comments

pmccray profile image

pmccray 6 years ago from Utah Author

Tammy you are so right - while writing and researching the subject matter, I feel nothing but sadness for those with this condition. I used to think MJ had turned into a nutjob, but with his home life back ground he was a perfect candidate for this type of mental illness. I thank you so much for the read and you're always welcomed comments.

Tammy Lochmann profile image

Tammy Lochmann 6 years ago

Those pictures are enough to keep me from getting anything done. Doctor's who do these things to these people are immoral and unethical. Just like what happened to MJ. Very good informative article. People who do this to themselves need psychological help not more surgery.

pmccray profile image

pmccray 6 years ago from Utah Author

Mick Dee - LOL...God does not produce garbage. We are all beautiful in His sight. We may have things that we feel could be better, but I look at myself sometimes and realize I am the product of two people I love dearly, my parents, one of whom is deceased now. So I see my Dad in me and it makes me happy. Have a blessed day and that you so much for your comment.

pmccray profile image

pmccray 6 years ago from Utah Author

yenajeon - thank you so much for stopping by and reading my hub. Yes isn't it horrifying. Nothing is worth this outcome. It seems as though the more these people engage in the surgery the sickness inside comes out and turns them into these God awful creatures. Thanks again for your comment and have a blessed day.

Micky Dee profile image

Micky Dee 6 years ago

I only have what the good Lord has given me. Oops- Lord could I have a do-over?

yenajeon profile image

yenajeon 6 years ago from California

OMG so scary! I have heard stories like this too. Its so sad that people are so willing to resort to these extremes.

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