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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Nicholas Greco IV, MS, BCETS, CATSM (Columbia College of Missouri)
Description: This is an exceptionally well written and much needed book on body image that presents a step-by-step program to fight the urge to "fix" your skin, hair, etc. The author's approach is based on cognitive-behavioral therapy and focuses on the irrational thoughts, distorted beliefs, and all-or-nothing thinking that is prevalent among those obsessed with body image.
Purpose: The purpose is to help people recognize, identify, and alleviate the distress and excessive amount of time and energy on body appearance. It is written for individuals with concerns about body image, as well as for their family and friends. It is also a defense against the barrage of "perfect" images, ads, and television shows. The book fully meets the author's objectives.
Audience: Because the book is written in such a friendly, straightforward manner, it would be easy to recommend it to clients or friends. Those suffering with body image issues, their family and friends, and even therapists will find this to be a most worthwhile reading experience. The author is the founder and director of the Body Dysmorphic Disorder Clinic and Research Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital.
Features: The book is well structured and reader friendly for all levels. The program is built on cognitive-behavioral therapy, presenting a straightforward and realistic approach. Notably, the irrational, illogical thinking patterns are discussed with specific focus on one's core beliefs. An unbiased discussion on whether to take medication or not is refreshing. Therapist readers will especially appreciate the chapter on comorbidity.
Assessment: The author has given both the general public and the mental health community a wonderfully useful and worthy compendium of information on body image.