By:Jazmine Marie Veloz
Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder that makes people lose more weight than is considered healthy for their age and height. Persons with this disorder may have an intense fear of weight gain, even when they are underweight. They may diet or exercise too much or use other ways to lose weight.
15 Danengers of Anorexia
- Malnutrition - caused by undereating or overeating.
- Dehydration - caused by the depletion or lack of intake of fluids in the body, or by restriction of carbohydrates and fat.
- Electrolyte Imbalances - electrolyte are essential to the production of the body's "natural electricity" that ensures healthy teeth, joints and bones, nerve and muscle impulses, kidneys and heart, blood sugar levels and the delivery of oxygen to the cells.
- Hyponatremia (related to "water-loading") - as stated above, electrolytes are essential to proper body functioning.
- Lanugo - (soft downy hair on face, back and arms). This is caused due to a protective mechanism built-in to the body to help keep a person warm during periods of starvation and malnutrition, and the hormonal imbalances that result.
- Refeeding Syndrome (related to treatment) - Starved or severely malnourished patients can undergo life-threatening fluid and electrolyte shifts following the initiation of aggressive nutritional support therapies.
- Edema - swelling of the soft tissues as a result of excess water accumulation.
- Muscle Atrophy - wasting away of muscle and decrease in muscle mass due to the body feeding off of itself.
- Impaired Neuromuscular Function - due to vitamin and mineral deficiencies (specifically potassium), and malnutrition.
- Paralysis - transient (or temporary) paralysis -- extreme weakness of muscles or not being able to move at all.
- Tearing of Esophagus - caused by self-induced vomiting.
- Mallory-Weiss tear - associate with vomiting, a tear of the gastroesophageal junction.
- Cancer - of the throat and voice box (Larynx) due to acid reflux disorders.
- Gastric Rupture - spontaneous stomach erosion, perforation or rupture.
- Insomnia - having problems falling and/or staying asleep.
10 Signs/Symptoms to Look For
- Dramatic weight loss in a relatively short period of time.
- Obsession with calories and fat content of foods.
- Wearing big or baggy clothes or dressing in layers to hide body shape and/or weight loss.
- Visible food restriction and self-starvation.
- Obsession with continuous exercise.
- Frequent trips to the bathroom immediately following meals (sometimes accompanied with water running in the bathroom for a long period of time to hide the sound of vomiting).
- Obsession with weight and complaining of weight problems (even if "average" weight or thin).
- Visible bingeing and/or purging.
- Isolation. Fear of eating around and with others.
- Use or hiding use of diet pills, laxatives, ipecac syrup (can cause immediate death!) or enemas.
2 Ways They Can Find Help
- Eat more to gain the weight back.
- Go to the hospital so the doctors can help you be you again.