Olfactory Reference Syndrome

Individuals with olfactory reference syndrome (ORS) have an excessive and irrational concern that they are emitting an unpleasant odor. To others, this concern is unreasonable and definitely excessive. This persistent preoccupation regarding body odor is usually accompanied by shame and embarrassment. Individuals who suffer from olfactory Reference syndrome may frequently wash the body area which they believe is causing the foul odor (e.g., excess teeth brushing to alleviate supposed bad breath, etc). They may also use perfumes or deodorants in excess in order to disguise what they perceive to be a rancid smell. They may avoid social interactions altogether. This disorder has not yet been included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV).

Taijin Kyofusho (TKS) is a Japanese culture-specific syndrome. Unlike in olfactory reference syndrome where an individual is very concerned that they will be embarrassed because of how they smell, sufferers of taijin kyofusho fear they may offend other people because of their odor.

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