Psychology

Gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria is a state that involves a conflict that originates between the physical or assigned gender that a person has and the gender with which he, she or they identify. People with gender dysphoria may feel very uncomfortable with the gender they were assigned or born with. People with gender dysphoria sometimes describe it as a set of discomforts with their own body, primarily during puberty or they may feel uncomfortable with the expected roles of their assigned gender. People with gender dysphoria can often experience significant difficulties and functioning problems associated with this conflict between the way they feel and the way they think about themselves and their physical or assigned gender.

Gender dysphoria

Related topics

Gender identity, sexual identity

What is gender dysphoria?

Gender dysphoria is the condition in which a person feels that their gender identity does not match their real biological sex. It is a disorder related to one's own gender identity.

Causes of gender dysphoria

Gender dysphoria is a condition that usually appears at an early stage of a person’s development. Generally, children begin to identify their biological sex around three or four years old. It usually manifests itself in children’s refusal to wear clothing according to their sex, or to participate in activities or games that have been “designated” to their gender. Causes can be classified into:

Symptoms of gender dysphoria

Symptoms are based on the person’s or child’s insistence on belonging to another sex, looking for ways to fit into opposite sex activities and situations. Their fantasies of belonging to the opposite sex are constant and they like to dress up in clothes that do not match their sex. They don’t like their sexual organs, they feel uncomfortable doing normal functional activities, they react the same way they would if they didn’t have the sex they were born with. They are constantly worried about how to eliminate their primary and secondary sexual characteristics.

Diagnosis

The Statistical Diagnostic Manual of Mental Disorders provides a general diagnosis of gender dysphoria with separate specific criteria for children and for adolescents and adults.

In adults and adolescents the diagnosis is generally made according to the following aspects:

In children, gender dysphoria diagnosis involves at least six of the following desires and the presence of associated significant distress or impairment in function, which lasts at least six months.

Treatment of gender dysphoria

The goal of treatment is not to change the person or try to convince them to accept their body, on the contrary, treatment focuses on being able to empower them to cope with situations and negative feelings that may present to them. Psychological therapy is the ideal treatment for dysphoria. Some people eventually take medication to change their physical appearance. The treatment helps them to accept and carry out personal, social and legal transformations in a suitable time.

Written by Gabriela Briceño V.
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