What Is Body Image Despair?

What Is Body Image Despair?All individuals dislike something about their body – whether it be their nose, the broadness of their shoulders or the size of their waist. It is normal for individuals to feel unsatisfied with something about their body. However, when this dissatisfaction becomes more intense and time consuming, it can lead to the development of body image despair, a psychological condition where an individual is deeply and negatively affected by his or her outward appearance.

What Causes Body Image Despair?

For many individuals, an obsession with body image can damage their physical and psychological health. In many cases, this despair develops as a result of an external event that has caused emotional distress, such as the following:

  • Pregnancy, childbirth and infertility – Experiencing weight gain from being pregnant, weight loss from giving birth and nursing or infertility issues can cause a woman to begin struggling with her weight. This struggle can often lead to body image despair as the woman can have trouble coping with the new image she has of her body.
  • Menopause and aging – Menopause and aging are common causes of body image despair because individuals’ bodies are changing as a result of their progression into the later years of life. This can cause fluctuations in weight, changes in skin elasticity, changes in hair color and more, all of which can lead to lowered self-esteem in regards to personal body image.
  • Divorce and infidelity – A major marital event such as a divorce or infidelity can cause individuals to begin doubting themselves on every level, including physically. This episode of rejection can lead to despair about outward appearance, causing individuals to become preoccupied with ways to alter the dissatisfactory elements of their appearance.

Many of these life-altering events can make individuals experience a series of emotions that cause them to look inwards. As they begin to try to solve their emotional issues, however, they can quickly pick up bad habits that can lead to additional body image issues, such as eating disorders or self-harm practices.

Preventing Body Image Despair Consequences

While it may be difficult to stop body image despair from occurring, it is possible to prevent it from escalating into a bigger issue. The most important thing for individuals struggling with body image despair is to reach out for some therapeutic care that will help them understand and cope with the body related issues that are plaguing them. Traditional psychotherapy is often extremely helpful in treating body image despair because it gives individuals an opportunity to talk about their concerns and get feedback from a professional. Also, behavioral therapies, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), are extremely successful in helping individuals struggling with weight issues to change their attitudes and behaviors toward their physical appearance.

Do You Need Help Overcoming Body Image Despair?

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