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Anorexia by Janee Mitchell

By at June 14, 2012 | 12:34 pm | Print

Anorexia by Janee Mitchell

Anorexia nervosa is a type of eating disorder. People suffering from anorexia cannot maintain a healthy weight, are fearful of weight gain, have a great desire of being incredibly thin, a distortion of body image, and odd eating behaviors. Today the rate of those suffering from anorexia is continuously increasing. Young woman in America face anorexia more than any other country. The disorder is almost unknown to other societies. Those who are affected by anorexia are extremely fearful of weight gain so much that they put themselves in harm’s way by ignoring the needs of their body.

Poor body image and low self esteem play a huge role in causing the disorder. Eventually, those who are suffer from anorexia become addicted to their body appearance. The way they perceive themselves is completely different from those around them. When looking in the mirror they see someone who is heavy when in reality they are bone thin. It is almost impossible for these people to realize they are well under weight. They are constantly thinking about controlling their bodies.
Neglect from family members only increases the probability of someone to develop the disorder. Some risk factors that can lead to anorexia would be perfectionism, family history of an eating disorder, troubled family relationships, parents that are over controlling or are critical of appearance, and history of sexual or physical abuse.

Anorexia nervosa comes with many health risks and concerns because the body is receiving a low supply of nutrients to none at all. Consequences of anorexia may be depression, anxiety and withdrawal. Anorexia not only changes body weight but always affects the human brain. Almost all of reported cases have included having severe headaches, mood swings, memory loss, constipation and bloating. Other symptoms of someone who is anorexic is dry skin, tooth decay, gum damage, brittle nails and hair. They tend to have a low body temperature so it is likely for them to complain about being cold. Anorexia takes a great toll on the entire body; there is no part that is not affected. The bones, muscles, and heart weaken as well as the immune system. Many have a low white blood cell count, swollen joints, slow heart rate, low blood pressure and one-third become anemic. It is also very common for anorexic women to stop menstruating.

People with anorexia nervosa develop odd and ritualistic eating habits. Many cut their food into tiny pieces and eat small amounts at a time. It is very common for them to not eat in front of people, although they may cook for others that they will not eat the food themselves.

Catching and curing anorexia early on is most effective because the beginning stages are most treatable. Prolonging treatment is not a smart decision but it is never too late to seek help. One of the first steps of treating anorexia is admitting there is a problem which is not simple. Keep in mind people with anorexia do not see themselves the way that others do. It is difficult to acknowledge a problem when they do not see one. People can only reach out to help to a certain extent. The effort and support being put in has to also be coming from the person in need. Once treatment has been accepted it much easier to move forward.

References
1. National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders. (2012)
http://www.anad.org/

2. Steven Levenkron. (1991) Treating and Understanding Crippling Habbits.
Warner Books, Inc., 666 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10103. (183 pages).

3. Karen Bellenir.(2006) Mental Health Information for Teens.
Omnigraphics Inc., 615 Griswold Street, Detroit, MI 48226. (373 pages)

4. Dwight L. Evans, Edna B. Foa, Raquel E. Gur, Herbert Hendin, Charles P. O‘Brien, Martin E. P. Seligman, and B. Timothy Walsh. (2005).Treating and Preventing Adolescent Mental Health Disorders.
Oxford University Press, Inc., 198 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016. (615 pages)

5. National Eating Disorders Association. (2012)
http://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/

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