Anorexia and bulimia

Anorexia and bulimia are both eating disorders that can affect both the sufferer and those around them. Also known as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa, both of these conditions revolve around poor eating habits and poor self image. Although sufferers of these conditions may seem like crazy dieting disorders, there is much more behind the surface. People who suffer from these conditions have psychological disorders that are surfacing as eating disorders.

Anorexia is a condition in which a person usually starts out trying to diet for weight loss. Once weight loss is accomplished a person then realizes that they are able to control that aspect of their life. This then becomes a control issue in a person that may feel out of control in other areas of their life. For anorexics being in control of what enters their body and how much they weigh becomes a skill that they have mastered. This gives them power and they thrive on it. An anorexic may bring them self to the point of starvation just to prove to themselves that they can have control over something. This is an inward and on going battle that they struggle with and in the process they do damage to their bodies through means of malnutrition. This is a psychological disorder that is as addicting for some as drugs are for others.

Bulimics are anorexics that use purging to get rid of the food they have eaten. Whereas anorexia is usually described as a condition in which a person starves themselves, bulimics binge eat, which means to eat a lot food at one time, then purge the food by means of vomiting, use of laxatives, or obsessive exercising. Bulimics also use these means as a way to gain control over something. Bulimics tend to allow themselves the joy of eating foods they love but then feel guilty or shameful so they purge the food shortly after ingesting it. This is to prevent them from gaining weight from the food they have eaten.

Anorexia and Bulimia can both begin after a traumatic experience. They can also be triggered by constant criticism of one’s body, peer pressure to be thin or being raised around family members that are over achievers and constantly judging other’s appearances. A child that has witnessed a family member, such as a mother or older sibling, obsess over weight or body image is likely to inherit the same type of feelings about themselves.

Signs of anorexia and bulimia can be hard to distinguish since a lot of sufferers of these conditions are very good at hiding the condition until it becomes obvious. Extreme weight loss, poor body image, claiming to be fat when underweight, going to the restroom directly after eating, broken blood vessels in eyes or face, moodiness, fatigue, depression, seclusion, poor oral health, cutting bites of food into small pieces, hoarding food or becoming obsessed with food in strange ways can all be signs of anorexia or bulimia.

Often times a person suffering from anorexia or bulimia will deny the condition or truly does not feel that they have a problem. This can make getting medical help difficult. At times it becomes crucial to ones recovery for a parent or friend to inform the doctor of what is really going on with the patient. Treatment needs to be both medical and psychological for a person to recover successfully. Since these disorders come from an unhealthy mental status it is extremely important to get to the root of the underlying problem. There are also support groups out there to help sufferers and their loved ones get through these hard times. Both anorexia and bulimia affect not only the person with the condition, but also those around them.

Last updated on Jun 3rd, 2010 and filed under Healthy Eating. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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