If you or a loved one is suffering from Anorexia it’s important to know what to expect and what help is out there for you.
Here we look at what anorexia actually is and some of the signs and symptoms of this condition and what can be done with the right treatment to give the best chance of being set on the road to recovery.
What is Anorexia?
Anorexia or Anorexia Nervosa as it is clinically known is a condition that presents itself through a number of different characteristics but most notably the sufferer’s obsessive thoughts about gaining weight and their refusal, despite the negative consequences involved to maintain a healthy body weight.
This is put down to a cognitive bias which is a deviation in judgment that occurs in particular situations such as eating disorders.
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Signs, Symptoms and Risks of Anorexia
There are numerous signs and symptoms that are associated with anorexia, the most common are as follows:
- Unexplainable and rapid weight loss
- An obsessive interest in food and sometimes cooking – for example although someone suffering from anorexia may go out of their way to hold elaborate dinner parties they will not eat the food they meticulously prepared themselves.
- Studying calories and information printed on packets of food, obsessively exercising and dieting even though they are below their ideal body weight
- Downy fine hair called Languo can grow on the suffers face and body, they may become insular and depressed choosing to spend more time alone.
- Frequently people suffering from Anorexia purge , either by taking laxatives or by self inducing vomiting, not only does this have a detrimental effect on the gut and oesophagus but on the teeth too, the frequent contact with stomach acid means the enamel on the tooth’s surface is eaten away at a far quicker rate than would normally be seen.
- Feeling cold or turning up the heating when everyone else is fine is another symptom of anorexia; this is due to poor circulation which lowers the blood pressure and body temperature. Sufferers may wear big baggy jumpers and shirts to hide their body, which they often perceive as unattractive no matter how thin they become.
Treatment for Anorexia
Once there has been a professional diagnosis of Anorexia treatment can begin. Addiction treatment for anorexia aims to help the patient recover by addressing the three presiding factors of the illness.
These are helping the patient return to a healthy weight, helping the patient remain at their ideal healthy weight by treating any underlying psychological issues they have and finally eliminating any of the factors that were responsible for the eating disorder occurring in the first place.
A qualified addiction counselor is the best person to seek advice from in the first instance. If you or a loved one is suffering from anorexia, remember recovery is achievable and the first step is just a call away.