Personality traits as vulnerability factors in body dysmorphic disorder

Faculty/Professorship: Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy  
Author(s): Schieber, Katharina; Kollei, Ines  ; Zwaan, Martina de; Müller, Astrid; Martin, Alexandra
Title of the Journal: Psychiatry Research
ISSN: 0165-1781
Publisher Information: Amsterdam [u.a.]. : Elsevier Science
Year of publication: 2013
Volume: 210
Issue: 1
Pages: 242-246
Language(s): English
DOI: 10.1016/j.psychres.2013.06.009
Cognitive behavioural models consider certain personality traits to be risk factors for the development of Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD). Research on personality traits in BDD is scarce, therefore this study examined perfectionism, aesthetic sensitivity and the behavioural inhibition system (BIS) in BDD. Furthermore, the association between these personality traits and the extent of dysmorphic concerns was investigated.

Individuals with BDD (n=58) and a population based control sample (n=2071), selected from a representative German population survey, completed self-report questionnaires assessing DSM-5 criteria of BDD, dysmorphic concerns, perfectionism, aesthetic sensitivity and BIS-reactivity.

Individuals with BDD reported significantly higher degrees of perfectionism as well as of BIS-reactivity compared to the population based control sample, whereas the groups did not differ significantly regarding aesthetic sensitivity. However, for the total sample, each of the personality traits was related dimensionally to dysmorphic concerns.

Current BDD models consider perfectionism and aesthetic sensitivity to be vulnerability factors. In addition to these concepts, the present study suggests that BIS-reactivity is related to BDD. Self-reported aesthetic sensitivity was not found to be specifically pronounced in BDD, but along with perfectionism and BIS-reactivity aesthetic sensitivity was generally associated with dysmorphic concerns.
Keywords: Aesthetic sensitivity, Behavioural inhibition, BIS-reactivity, Dysmorphic concerns, Perfectionism
Type: Article
Year of publication: 21. August 2015