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Anorexia - Symptom, Treatment And Causes

What is Anorexia ?

Anorexia is an eating disorder which is characterized by unusually low body weight, distorted perception of body weight and fear of becoming fat or obese. People with anorexia have an obsession on controlling their shape and weight, they usually use a lot of efforts to reduce their body weight and this interferes with their day to day activities.To prevent gaining weight, people with anorexia restrict eating a large amount of food. They control their calories by misusing enemas, diuretics, diet aids and laxatives. Sometimes, they also resort to vomiting after eating their meal. Anorexia can give you psychological stress about self worth, body image and social acceptance.

How would you know if your loved one has anorexia?

There can be a possibility that your loved one might have anorexia, it is recommended to watch out for these possible signs:

  • Skipping meals
  • Making unusual excuses for not eating food.
  • Eating only foods that are low in calories and fat.
  • Adopting certain eating rituals (spitting food or vomiting after eating) and rigid meal schedule.
  • Cooking meals for others but avoid eating any of it.
  • Checking their weight repeatedly.
  • Checking in the mirror for any perceived flaws.
  • Complaining and whining about being fat.
  • Refusing to eat in public.
  • Eroded teeth and knuckle calluses which occur if they vomit regularly.
  • Covering themselves in a lot of clothes.

What causes anorexia?

  • Biological- There can be genetic changes in a person’s body which can make them more prone to developing anorexia. Some people can also have a genetic tendency directed towards perseverance, sensitivity and perfectionism (traits which are associated with anorexia).
  • Psychological- Many emotional characteristics can also contribute to anorexia. Women who have OCD (Obsessive compulsive disorder) are at a higher risk of developing anorexia. This occurs because they can have an excessive drive for perfectionism, this can make them think they’re never too thin enough.
  • Environmental- In today’s world, worth and success is equated with being thin. Peer pressure also helps fuel the desire which exists mostly among young girls.
  • Risks factors which contribute in developing anorexia:

    • If you are a girl, you can be at a higher risk of developing anorexia.
    • Changes in some genes can make people more prone to anorexia.
    • If one or both your parents have anorexia, there are chances that you can develop anorexia too.
    • Artistic and sports related activities- Models, dancers, actors and athletes are at a higher risk of developing anorexia.
Treatable by medical professional Usually self diagnosable Lab test not required Chronic: can last for years or be lifelong Non communicable
Symptoms
Extreme weight loss Fatigue Insomnia Fainting Dizziness Inability to menstruate Constipation

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What is Anorexia ?

How would you know if your loved one has anorexia?

What causes anorexia?

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