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Eating Disorders

Eating Disorders

An eating disorder is an abnormal behavior related to food and eating, which may include starving, bingeing, vomiting, laxative abuse, or excessive exercise.  Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia Nervosa are two common eating disorders seen primarily in adolescent females.
Eating Disorders can lead to serious health problems.  If you know somebody who may have an eating disorder, try and help that person get the professional help they need.

Anorexia Nervosa
Anorexia Nervosa is the eating disorder where individuals refuse to eat, because they have an abnormal feal of gaining weight.  No matter how thin these individuals may get, they will still see themselves as overweight.  Many of these individuals will exercise vigorously and some may also abuse laxatives and induce vomiting.  These individuals suffer from psychosocial problems, and turn away from food as a way to cope.
Sign of Anorexia Nervosa
  • Dry skin
  • Thin and brittle hair
  • Lack of muscle mass
  • Dehydration
  • Lack of menstrual period
  • Disturbance in sleeping patterns

Bulima Nervosa is an eating disorder whereby large amounts of food are consumed during a short period of time.  Individuals with Bulimia often suffer from emotional instability and use food as an escape from their problems.  Ashamed by the binge session, they try to remove the food from their bodies by forcing themselves to vomit or by using laxatives.  These individuals want to remove the food from their body before it is absorbed, as an attempt to avoid gaining weight.
Signs of Bulimia Nervosa
  • Damage to teeth from vomiting
  • Irritated throat from vomiting
  • Cracked and damaged lips
  • Broken blood vessels in the face
  • Dehydration
  • Rectal bleeding from laxative use 

National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorder
National Eating Disorders Organization