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Adolescence is a critical time for physical development and maturation, and with these important physiological changes comes greater awareness of body image and appearance, which, for a proportion of young people can become excessive, signaling the onset of body dysmorphic disorder (BDD). BDD in adolescence is associated with significant impairment and suicidality, is poorly understood, and currently there is limited evidence for the effectiveness of psychological therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is currently the most promising and best available psychological therapy for BDD in youth. The aim of this article is to provide clinicians with information on CBT treatment for BDD in young people and to provide guidance based on clinical experience of working with this complex population group. The article will include discussion of strategies including maximizing psychoeducation with parental involvement, the use of cognitive therapy techniques, exposure with response prevention, and perceptual visual training techniques, including attention training and mirror retraining.


School of Psychology

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Journal Article

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