Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder recognized by a very excessive amount of weight loss due to starvation tactics. Usually, a person suffering from anorexia is terrified of gaining any weight and has distorted views on weight.
They believe that it is most important control how they look by controlling what they do or do not eat. They control how many calories they take in at a time by counting, or exercising a lot or even using laxatives.
It doesn’t matter if they are severely underweight or how much weight is a loss. They still never feel that they are thin enough.
A lot of people think anorexia is about food because those who are anorexic tend to focus on that obviously, but that isn’t the point. You pretty much decide your self-worth based on how thin you are.
It can actually be difficult for someone with an eating disorder to recognize it as a problem. They think being thin is healthy and worthwhile and more important than anything else.
There are quite a few physical symptoms of anorexia. Some of them include:
– Extreme weight loss or not making expected developmental weight gains
– Thin appearance
– Abnormal blood counts
– Dizziness or fainting
– Bluish discoloration of the fingers
– Hair that thins, breaks or falls out
– Soft, downy hair covering the body
– Absence of menstruation
– Constipation and abdominal pain
– Dry or yellowish skin
– Intolerance of cold
– Irregular heart rhythms
– Low blood pressure
– Swelling of arms or legs
– Eroded teeth and calluses on the knuckles from induced vomiting
Treatment for anorexia usually starts with the diagnosis by a doctor. They decide someone has the problem and they figure out a treatment plan. Hospitalization is a common tactic to treat anorexia because people can’t be expected to eat on their own and their health is usually dangerously damaged.
If someone is very malnourished or refuses to eat, then hospitalization is the path for them.
Sometimes psychotherapy is extremely helpful. Family-based therapy is the best treatment for teenagers because this can help the parent recognize the issue and know how to help their child. Individual treatment works well for adults to help normalize regular eating patterns and behaviors and help them change their beliefs on eating.
Regardless of the method chosen treatment of anorexia is important before it is too late. Rehab settings often work well because someone is monitoring what you are taking in. Not only that but the foods are assuredly good for you. This can help to teach proper eating habits and help people relearn their relationship with food.