The 2-page handout

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Cosmetic surgeons in the USA are reporting a disturbing increase in the number of patients seeking and having facial procedures to look like their Snapchat selfies. The surgeons have termed this alarming new trend "Snapchat dysmorphia". This term derives from the condition body dysmorphic disorder - a mental disorder where the sufferer is obsessed with the idea that part of their body or appearance is severely flawed and in need of drastic measures to fix it. The surgeons described the condition in the journal Facial Plastic Surgery. They wrote that 55 per cent of plastic surgeons reported an increase in the number of patients wanting alterations to their face to look like they do after using Snapchat filters.

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Snapchat and other social media apps provide filters to allow people to "enhance" photos of their face to look "cuter". The professors say this is fuelling an obsession among younger people, especially teenage girls and women, with the "perfect" face. Doctors say many of the requests are physically impossible to perform surgically. They wrote: "This is an alarming trend because those filtered selfies often present an unattainable look and are blurring the line of reality and fantasy for these patients." They added: "The pervasiveness of these filtered images can take a toll on one's self-esteem." The most common procedures being requested include thinner noses, wider eyes and fuller lips.



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