How many times do you hear someone say, "Hey look at that girl, she must be anorexic." Some people would love to be called anorexic and sometimes it seems as if that word is a compliment. However, anorexia is a disease that can be life threatening, and a person suffering from this illness should get help right away. This article is going to explain what anorexia is, signs and symptoms of anorexia, and treatment options available to those suffering from it.
Anorexia is an eating disorder where people simply starve themselves. It usually begins at the beginning of puberty but can happen at an time during one`s lifetime. Poeple who are suffering from anorexia are very skinny people but feel that they are overweight. Anorexics also have an intense fear of becoming fat and their dieting habits usually develop this fear. Anorexia mostly affects girls where thinness is a priority. Activities such as dance, theater, and long distance running are the most liable to make a person feel the need to be thin.
Some of the signs and symtoms of are anorexia are:
- Denial of the feeling of hunger
- Avoidance of social gatherings where food is involved
- Excessive focus on an exercise regimen
- Fear of gaining weight or of being fat
- Obsession with dieting and weight loss
- Refusal to maintain the minimal normal body weight for one's age and height
- Dramatic weight loss
- Basing self-worth on body weight and body image
- Avoidance of eating
- Even when thin, perception of self as overweight
- Weighing self several times a day and focusing on tiny fluctuations in weight
If your case of anorexia is severe enough, result of death may occur. However, even less severe cases can lead to hospitalization. In cases where a patient is severely ill and becomes less than 7% of the appropriate bodyweight, hospitilization may be needed. Another common method of treatment for anorexia is psychotherapy. This can involve a significant amount of time and financial commitment but the amount is well worth it. Other common methods of treating anorexia are cognitive-behavioral therapy, group therapy, interpersonal psychotherapy, family therapy, medications, and even self-help programs.
If you notice any signs that you are becoming anorexic, it is important that you get help right away. Social support is the most important factor when it comes to fighting this deadly disease and should become the first thing on your mind when you wake up each day. Many people can cure their anorexia just by eating a healthy, well-balanced diet. Maybe they just needed a lesson in nutrition, it can be that simple. Until next time, later.
April 18, 2006