Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Frederick Grieve (director), Aaron Hughey, Andrea Jenkins, Karl Laves

Degree Program

Doctor of Psychology in Applied Psychology


Muscle Dysmorphia is when the individual is preoccupied with the idea that his or her body build is too small or insufficiently muscular. This study looked at the distinct criteria of MD, which is persistently and obsessively checking one’s appearance in the mirror and being dissatisfied with it. It studied the reasons behind these repetitive mirror-gazing behaviors. This study also attempted to understand the effect of an individual’s age, educational background, religious orientation, sexual orientation, and socio-economic status on his predisposition to MD via mirror-gazing behaviors. This study used a qualitative research design. Part I of the study included participants who filled out the Muscle Dysmorphia Questionnaire (MDQ) related to the symptomology of MD. Participants scoring high were selectively contacted for Part II of the study. Part II included participants filling out an open-ended survey stating various reasons, thoughts, feelings, and opinions about their mirror-gazing behaviors. Content analysis was done to understand the themes of how many males perceive flaws in their appearance when exposed to the mirror repeatedly. The study aimed at connecting all the relevant characteristics underlying the concept of mirror-gazing behaviors. The impact of the current study is to help men become aware that their uncontrollable need for mirror checking behaviors may be clinically significant or can lead to MD or BDD.


Behavior and Behavior Mechanisms | Clinical Psychology | Medicine and Health Sciences | Psychiatry and Psychology | Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences