Anorexia Nervosa

Are you suffering from it?

What is Anorexia Nervosa?

An eating disorder in which a person fails to maintain body weights that are normal for their age and height and have fears of becoming fat, distorted body images, and amenorrhea, they starve themselves, subsisting on little or no food for very long periods of time (Nolen-Hoeksema, 2014).
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Symptoms of Anorexia Nervosa

Physical Symptoms:


  • Extreme Weight Loss
  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Bluish Discoloration of the finger tips
  • Dry or yellowish Skin
  • Dehydration
  • Swelling of arms or legs



Behavioral and Emotional Symptoms:


  • Severely restricting food intake by dieting or fasting-may include excessive exercise
  • Refusal to eat
  • Denial of hunger
  • Fear of gaining weight
  • Lying about how much food has been eaten
  • Social Withdrawal
  • Depressed mood
  • Flat mood (lack of emotion)


Reference: Staff, M. (n.d.). Anorexia nervosa. Retrieved February 15, 2016, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/anorexia/symptoms-causes/dxc-20179513

Possible Causes of Anorexia Nervosa

According to Mayoclinic.com there are biological, psychological, and environmental factors that can cause a person to develop anorexia nervosa. It is not quite clear which genes are involved, but there is a possibility that genetic changes may cause a person to be more vulnerable to developing anorexia (Staff, n.d.). When it comes to genes, it appears to carry a general risk for eating disorders rather than a specific risk for one type of eating disorder. Psychological is dealing with all the mental part of having this disorder. For example young women that may be suffering from obsessive compulsive personality traits make it easier for strict diets and forgo food despite of being hungry (Staff, n.d.). The last thing that can be a possible cause of anorexia would be the environment that the person is living in. Social Pressures and Cultural Norms are a part of the environment a person is living in. Social Pressures to be thin has been taken to extremes by the magazines, reality TV shows say "Hey if you don't look like this, you are not beautiful and no one will ever love you."


Reference: Staff, M. (n.d.). Anorexia nervosa. Retrieved February 15, 2016, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/anorexia/symptoms-causes/dxc-20179513

Treatment Options

Medical Treatment: First job is to stabilizing and addressing any serious health issue. Hospitalization may be necessary if the person is seriously malnourished. With Medical Hospitalization, one may not be able to leave until a less critical weight.


Shades of hope is a medical treatment center that specializes in eating disorders to learn more about this center click on the link.


http://shadesofhope.com/about/


Nutritional Treatment: Second part of treating Anorexia is to receive nutrition counseling. The dietitian or nutritionist will teach them how to healthy eating and proper nutrition. This will include creating a meal plan that contain enough calories to maintain a healthy weight.


Counseling and Therapy for Anorexia: The most crucial part of anorexia treatment is seeking counseling and therapy. The goal of this is to identify the negative thoughts and feelings that fuel your eating disorder and to fuel it by doing something healthier.


Reference: Smith, M., & Segal, J. (2016, February). Anorexia Nervosa. Retrieved February 13, 2016, from http://www.helpguide.org/articles/eating-disorders/anorexia-nervosa.htm

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5 Myths and Misperceptions

1. Disorders are not serious; it is a lifestyle choice or about vanity.

Fact: Eating disorders are a very serious, life threatening mental illness, anyone who shows symptoms should seek help immediately.


2. Dieting is a normal part of life.

Fact: "While dieting practices are unhealthy at any life-stage, particular attention has been paid to dieting in adolescence." (Myths about eating disorders, n.d.)


3. Eating disorders are a cry for attention or the person is going through a phase.

Fact: People with eating disorders do not seek attention, for the most part they try and hide, disguise, and deny their behavior.


4.Families, particularly the parents are to blame for the eating disorder.

Fact: There is no evidence that supports that certain parenting styles lead a a child to develop an eating disorder.


5.Eating disorders only affect white, middle class females, particularly adolescent girls.

Fact: Eating disorders can happen to anyone. Males make up about 20% of the population of people with anorexia. (Myths about eating disorders, n.d.).


Reference: Myths about eating disorders. (n.d.). Retrieved February 12, 2016, from http://www.nedc.com.au/myths

Credentials to look for when looking for a therapist

When looking for a therapist you will want to look at the certification that the therapist has. According to the IAEDP or the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals, they must be certified in CEDS (Certified Eating Disorders Specialist), CEDSN (Certified Eating Disorders Specialist and Nutrition) (Certification, n.d.). Individuals that have these qualifications have met many educational requirements, have done a required amount of work experience, have successfully passed a written examination covering eating disorders. To keep these qualifications one must continue their education when it is needed.


Reference: Certification. (n.d.). Retrieved February 15, 2016, from http://www.iaedp.com/certification/certification.htm