Eating disorders are mental disorders that cause persistent abnormal eating habits that have a great adverse impact on the physical and mental health of a person. Eating disorders make people focus on their body shape, weight, and their food, developing extremely unhealthy and downright dangerous eating behaviors. The most well known among eating disorders are Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, and Binge Eating disorder.
Anorexia Nervosa is the condition where a person suffers from a fear of gaining weight and severely restricts food intake, causing a very low body weight. The patient considers themselves to be overweight even when they would be extremely underweight and continue to limit food intake trying to become thinner. Bulimia Nervosa is another disorder where the patient goes through cycles of sudden overeating followed by attempts to compensate including forced vomiting, excessive exercise, intake of laxatives, etc. Overeating and purging cycles cause embarrassment, feelings of guilt and shame, and is repeated secretly to avoid the shame. Anorexic people may also indulge in the purging behavior, but differs from bulimia in the fact that anorexic patients are always severely underweight, while bulimic patients fall in the normal to overweight category. Patients suffering from the binge eating disorder go through cycles of overeating regularly, but do not indulge in purging behavior.
Treatment for eating disorders mostly focus on psychotherapy to bring patients out of the mindset causing the disorder. This is often combined with medical care and nutritional therapy.
Treatments for eating disorders often require a combination of treatments. Medications may be prescribed to deal with any underlying physical disease that causes the eating disorder. Sometimes a mental disease like anxiety or depression is the cause of an eating disorder, and these may be treated with medications to treat the eating disorder. Treatments are also combined with nutritional guidelines tailored to individual patients to help them cope with the nutritional imbalance caused due to the disorder and to restore them to their normal BMI.
The most important mode of treatment for eating disorder is psychotherapy. Since eating disorder is a mental disorder, psychotherapy shows the best results in treating it as it can address all the underlying causes for the disorder to have developed and help the patient deal with them better. Psychotherapeutic options may include behavior therapy targeted at the diseased individual, group therapy among a group of people affected by similar condition, or family therapy where the friends, family, and loved ones of the patient are involved. Psychotherapeutic treatment may be applied in combination with one or more of medications and nutritional therapy. Depending on the severity of the disorder and its outcomes, hospitalization may also be advised.
Eating disorders manifest as persisting abnormal eating habits. Anybody who is very seriously underweight and yet regularly insists on eating far lesser than necessary is eligible for treatment. People who are very anxious about their weight and body shape often develop eating disorders and need to be treated. People who regularly get urgent craving for food at random times during the day and eat massive amounts compulsively need to be treated for eating disorders. Also people who regularly eat inedible items like dirt, talcum powder, toothpastes, etc. need to be treated for eating disorders.
Everybody can feel sudden cravings for food or may be unsatisfied with their body image. But in a number of cases these concerns do not persist and do not affect eating behavior. In these cases the people affected do not need to be treated.
Treatments for eating disorders need to be followed up with a nutritional chart designed and tailored to recover normal BMI for patients. A psychoanalytic checkup may be advised after some time after the treatment concludes to rule out any chances of relapse.
Like other psychoanalytic treatments, treatments for eating disorders are long term treatments. The recovery period is as long as the duration of the treatment, which is stopped after the problem is resolved.
Cost of treatments for eating disorders can range between Rs. 500 and Rs. 10,000. There is no real upper limit pertaining to the treatment as psychotherapy can extend for as long as needed.
The treatment results are usually permanent as long as the triggers causing the disorder do not reappear, or other triggers do not come into play.
Rs. 500 - Rs. 10,000
An individual adopts his personality on the basis of both the genes inherited by him/her as well as the individual’s life experiences. Psychologists have been trying for decades to decipher several aspects of temperament and personality along with particular personality traits in persons with eating disorders. Individuals appear relatively specific to each type of eating disorder, and they can be distinguished from healthy individuals.
Eating disorders are known to be caused by a combination of various factors such as genetic, temperamental as well as external influences. But the most common link between people with eating disorders comprises of difficulties in expressing and coping with emotions.
The connection between emotional avoidance and eating disorders
Emotional avoidance can be described as actions which are intended to inhibit any emotional response from taking a place such as anger, sadness, fear or anxiety. Individuals affected with eating disorders tend to seek refuge in continuous eating or stop eating as an unconscious effort to cope up with the situation and feel better.
For example, a person suffering from anorexia tends to restrict their food intake when they come across feelings of loneliness and sadness. This is because it gives them a false sense of control in the situation. On the other hand, when it comes to a person with bulimia, purging and bingeing offers them a momentary feeling of comfort and relief. People who tend to binge on food tend to run away from the reality and use food as a means to distract themselves from the concerns and worries of the real world.
The reality is that eating disorders tend to provide short-term relief or satisfaction from emotional distress while in the long run throwing them into the abyss of emotional misery, depression, and loneliness.
Treating Eating Disorder
Patients suffering from anorexia nervosa have excessive levels of emotional avoidance which can be compared to other psychiatric populations. This finding emphasizes the fact that emotional avoidance is present in abundance in patients with anorexia nervosa and it also testifies to the fact that to some extent such patients willingly avoid aversive emotional states. They are also not competent in correctly identifying emotions and are not able to respond to feeling stemming from emotional distress.
Treating eating disorders incorporates different types of strategies which can aid the sufferers to improve their quality of lives. But it is essential on the part of the doctors to help the patients identify, process and cope with the emotional turmoil in productive ways.
In many cultures, people are taught to suppress their emotions, but it has a long-term impact on the mind of the person. It is, therefore, necessary to share all kinds of emotional upheaval with some confidante. Such behaviours can help them to cope up with emotionally difficult and traumatic times.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
If you are diabetic and are in a practice of manipulating insulin levels to bring about weight loss, you must understand that it may have catastrophic consequences on your health.
Even though it is not yet officially regarded as a medical condition, diabulimia is a serious eating disorder that can bring about diabetes complications. According to experts, as many as one-third of the young female diabetics could be suffering from various diseases due to this condition. Even though it is more common in females, it is also seen to be occurring in significant numbers of young men as well.
Why is diabulimia one of the most dangerous eating disorders?
Diabulimia is a condition where the person deliberately injects less than the required amount of insulin to lose body weight. Contrary to type 2 diabetes, type 1 diabetes has no connection with lifestyle or diet. The ones who are affected need to get insulin since they are not able to produce enough insulin for their daily requirements. It is crucial to mention the function of insulin at this juncture. Without this hormone, the digestive system would not be able to break down the sugars from the foods and obtain energy from it. Without insulin, the sugars derived from food will be forced to feed the existing fat, organs, and even muscles.
When you are purposefully depriving the body of insulin, you are heading for permanent kidney failure, liver failure, fertility issues, heart diseases and even premature death. But it may not be visible from outside- you will have normalcy in your appearance. Since you are restricting insulin inside the body, you will have a very high blood sugar level. This invariably runs the risk of various complications such as damaging the eyes, kidneys and the nerve endings. The worst thing is that the warning signs may go unnoticed until it is too late. Therefore, it is always suggested to seek advice from endocrinologist as and when you notice any of the signs and symptoms mentioned above.
Know the warning signs
Even though the term is often deemed inaccurate, diabulimia holds the premonition of a serious pattern of disordered eating. Some of the most common warning signs of this disorder include:
Manipulating insulin can be fatal for people who have type 1 diabetes. In case you see that you are affected by any of these signs and symptoms, you should seek medical attention without further delay.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
If your child develops an eating disorder, you might be unsure about how to solve the problem and how to act on it. Eating disorders occur when your child tends to either eat in excess, or eats too less. The behavior of your child is also subjected to change because of an eating disorder. It is likely for him to get withdrawn, rude, and touchy. This makes it difficult for you to deal with them at a time when communication is necessary. Here are some essential tips that you should follow in dealing with eating disorders in children:
Every person faces ups and downs in life, the difference lies in how we deal with the low points of our life. Losing someone you love is probably the saddest experience anyone can go through. Our natural reaction to such a loss is grief. The more significant the loss; the more intense your grief will be. There is no right or wrong way to grieve and everyone grieves in a different way.
However, here are a few healthy ways you can cope with your loss to move on with your life.
1. Build a support system: When you are grieving, you may feel that nobody understands how you feel and would want to isolate yourself. Do not allow yourself to withdraw into a shell and instead build a support system of friends and family who you trust. You could also visit a counselor who is trained to deal with such situations. Joining a support group can also help.
2. Face your grief: Not allowing yourself to grieve can do more harm than good. You can suppress your grief for a short time but you cannot avoid it forever. The longer you avoid facing it, the more difficult it will be. Suppressing grief can also lead to a number of health problems such as depression, substance abuse and anxiety.
3. Look after your health: When grieving for the loss of a loved one, you may not feel hungry and may want to simply lie in bed all day. But you must instead get out, eat right and exercise regularly. When the body is healthy, you not only feel better physically but also emotionally. Avoid turning to alcohol and drugs to lift your mood.
4. Express yourself: Bottling up your emotions is never a good idea. However, sometimes talking about how you feel can be difficult. In such situations, look for alternate means of expressing yourself. For examples, you could try painting or start a scrapbook.
5. Look out for grief triggers: What makes coping with the loss of a loved one difficult is the fact that you share a number of life events with them. Birthdays, anniversaries, holidays and festive occasions can bring back memories of the person and overwhelm you. To successfully heal, you must plan ahead for events like this that will trigger grief. Do not allow yourself to be alone at such times.
6. Seek professional help: Sometimes, when you are dealing with the loss of a loved one, you find yourself sinking into depression or find it difficult to resume your normal lifestyle. It is a good idea to consult a mental health practitioner or counselor.
The skin is the largest organ that covers the human body from top to toe. It is also most susceptible when it comes to myriad infections and conditions that can range from mild and temporary to extreme and permanent. Seborrheic Dermatitis is a condition that produces red and itchy patches on the skin as well as flaky scales on the scalp. It may stem from an allergic reaction like eczema. Read on to know more about the condition.
This condition can be found at any age. It may be found in infants and in elderly people as well. The main causes of the condition include stress and even your genetic make-up. The hereditary factors also play a major role in conditions like these. This condition may be caused by the yeast that feasts on the skin and causes sores. Additionally, it may be caused as a side effect of certain medicines and other medical conditions. Many patients experience this condition when the weather is cold and dry.
Seborrheic Dermatitis may be caused by oily skin that can lead to excessive acne and other such eruptions. Depression and eating disorders can also result in this condition as a painful symptom. Patients who are HIV positive can experience this condition as a symptom.
The symptoms of this condition may vary from mild to extreme. Dandruff, cradle cap for babies, etc. are some of the main symptoms. This condition can cause eruptions around the face and neck as well as the navel and buttocks areas. It may also be seen in the folds of the skin like armpits and below the breasts. Scaling and redness are the main signs and symptoms that point towards the presence of Seborrheic Dermatitis. Inflammation may or may not occur. If it is associated with cradle cap, then there may not necessarily be any related inflammation.
There have been many instances where a mild flare up may end up healing on its own without any medication or medical intervention. In such cases, you can actually try some home-based treatment like ice packs. Good skin care and hygiene will also ensure that the condition clears up on its own, yet one should be prepared to see eruptions for a year at a time. Coal tar and zinc are some of the most commonly used elements in the medication that can be prescribed by a dermatologist. Anti-fungal products and a mild shampoo for babies can also be used in order to successfully treat this condition. Steroids may be required in order to successfully treat Seborrheic Dermatitis, if it becomes too extreme and difficult to contain. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a dermatologist.