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What Are The Two Main Eating Disorders

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How Will An Eating Disorder Impact My Life

6 Types of Eating Disorders

In addition to disrupting your day-to-day activities, an eating disorder can affect your mental and emotional health. You might find yourself feeling more anxious about the number of calories you consume or ashamed about your weight. You may start to isolate from friends and family who express concerns about your health, and that isolation can lead to depression.

The physical impact of an eating disorder can be significant. Over time, disordered eating behaviors can damage your digestive tract, skin, bones, and teeth, as well as the functioning of various other organs, such as your heart. Eating disorders have the highest death rate among mental health conditions, especially anorexia. In fact, the risk of early death for those with anorexia is 18 times higher than that of their peers. Thats why early recognition of symptoms and appropriate treatment are essential.;

Who Is At Risk For An Eating Disorder

Eating disorders are most often associated with females during adolescence and young adulthood, but anyone, rich or poor, young or old, and of any race, ability, culture, gender or sexual orientation can develop an eating disorder. Genes, the environment, societal norms, and psychological health all play a role. People with other mental and behavioral health challenges, such as depression, anxiety, or drug and alcohol use, are also more likely to engage in unhealthy eating behaviors. High-stress situations, including peer pressure, and activities that encourage a stricter dietsuch as participating in sports, dancing, or modelingcan also increase the risk.

How Do I Know If I Need Inpatient Treatment

If you think you have an eating disorder, if your symptoms have persisted or worsened despite attempts at outpatient treatment, or if you feel constantly preoccupied by thoughts of food and weight, then a good place to start is with a comprehensive evaluation in our Consultation Clinic.;To safely provide the best possible care during the COVID pandemic, we have expanded our outpatient telemedicine services to include remote clinical consultation and outpatient visits with our eating disorders doctors by videolink across multiple states. Video visits allow patients to connect face-to-face in real time without leaving their home by using their smartphone, tablet or computer. Virtual connections are secure and HIPAA compliant.

You will be seen by a psychiatrist who will perform a thorough review of your history and symptoms, medical tests and past treatment. We recommend you forward any past treatment records ahead of your appointment for the doctor to review. Whenever possible we ask that you attend the consultation with a close family member or significant other, since we believe family support and involvement is very important when you are struggling with an eating disorder. The doctor will also be interested in any medical or psychiatric problems you may have besides the eating disorder.

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Dieting Increases The Risk Of Developing Eating Disorders

Dieting is common among adolescents and normalised by society, but it is not a healthy behaviour and should not be considered a normal part of being an adolescent. Eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa can be triggered by dieting.;A person who crash diets , substantially increases their risk of developing an eating disorder. Adolescents should not be encouraged to go on a diet.

Getting Help For An Eating Disorder

How To Treat Eating Disorders Of All Types Using Cognitive ...

If you think you may have an eating disorder, see a GP as soon as you can.

A GP will ask about your eating habits and how you’re feeling, plus check your overall health and weight.

They may refer you to an eating disorder specialist or team of specialists.

It can be very hard to admit you have a problem and ask for help. It may make things easier if you bring a friend or loved one with you to your appointment.

You can also talk in confidence to an adviser from eating disorders charity Beat by calling their adult helpline on 0808 801 0677 or youth helpline on 0808 801 0711.

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Treatment For Eating Disorders

You can recover from an eating disorder, but it may take time and recovery will be different for everyone.

If you’re referred to an eating disorder specialist or team of specialists, they’ll be responsible for your care.

They should talk to you about the support you might need, such as for other conditions you have, and include this in your treatment plan.

Your treatment will depend on the type of eating disorder you have, but usually includes a talking therapy.

You may also need regular health checks if your eating disorder is having an impact on your physical health.

Your treatment may also involve working through a guided self-help programme if you have bulimia or binge eating disorder.

Most people will be offered individual therapy, but those with binge eating disorder may be offered group therapy.

Read more about the different treatments for:

Treatment for other specified feeding or eating disorder will depend on the type of eating disorder your symptoms are most like.

For example, if your symptoms are most like anorexia, your treatment will be similar to the treatment for anorexia.

Characteristics Of Anorexia Nervosa

Restriction of energy intake

A person with anorexia nervosa will be restricting their energy intake below the amount their body needs to;function, leading to significantly low body weight. In children, this is a weight that is below what is minimally;expected for them.

Fear of gaining weight

A person with anorexia nervosa has an intense fear of gaining w eight, or persistent behaviour that interferes;with weight gain, despite being of a low body weight.

Body image disturbance

A person with anorexia nervosa experiences a disturbance in the way in which their body weight or shape;is experienced, significant influence of body weight or shape on self-evaluation, and/or persistent lack of;recognition of the seriousness of their low body weight.

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How Common Are Eating Disorders

The eating disorders anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa, respectively, affect 0.5 percent and 2-3 percent of women over their lifetime. The most common age of onset is between 12-25. Although much more common in females, 10 percent of cases detected are in males.;Binge eating disorder and OSFED are more common and rates of ARFID are not yet known as this diagnosis was defined relatively recently.

What If I Have An Eating Disorder

3 Common Types of Eating Disorders

If you think you may have an eating disorder:

Tell someone. Tell a parent, teacher, counselor, or an adult you trust. Let them know what you’re going through. Ask them to help.

Get help early. When an eating disorder is caught early, a person has a better chance of recovery. Make an appointment with your doctor or an eating disorders specialist.

Go to all appointments. Treatment takes time and effort. Work hard to learn about yourself and your emotions. Ask questions any time you have them.

Be patient with yourself. There’s so much to learn, and change happens a little at a time. Take care of yourself and be with people who support you.

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Social Or Environmental Risk Factors

Social or environmental risk factors in the development of an eating disorder may include:;

  • being teased or bullied
  • a belief that high expectations from family and others must be met
  • major life changes such as family break-up, or the accumulation of many minor stressors
  • peer pressure to behave in particular ways
  • a parent or other role model who consistently diets or who is unhappy with their body
  • media and advertising images of the ideal body size and shape as slim and fit
  • a cultural tendency to judge people by their appearance.

Boys And Girls Experience Eating Disorders

Eating disorders are more likely to affect females than males. However, about 25 per cent of cases in adolescents occur with males.;Girls and boys can experience different social pressures about how they should look. Primary school-aged children are not immune to these pressures, and their attitudes and behaviours reflect adult concerns.Like many adult females, some girls want to lose weight and be thin. Like many adult males, some boys want to lose body fat, but increase muscle mass. Some boys try to meet unrealistically thin ideal standards.

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Types Of Eating Disorders: Anorexia Nervosa

First on the eating disorders list is Anorexia Nervosa. Anorexia is characterized by self-starvation and excessive weight loss.

The following are common anorexia symptoms:

  • Refusal to maintain body weight at or above a minimally normal weight for height, body type, age, and activity level
  • Intense fear of weight gain or being “fat”
  • Feeling “fat” or overweight despite dramatic weight loss
  • Loss of menstrual periods

Information on the;treatment of anorexia.

How Do Eating Disorders Affect Health And Emotions

Biological basis in eating disorders

Eating disorders can cause serious problems throughout the body.

Anorexia can lead to health problems caused by undernutrition and low body weight, such as:

  • low blood pressure
  • feeling tired, weak, dizzy, or faint
  • constipation and bloating

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What Are Symptoms Of Eating Disorders In Teens

Symptoms of eating disorders may include the following:

  • A distorted body image

Grunbaum, J; Kann, L; Kinchen, S; et al. Mortality and Morbidity Weekly Report Surveillance Summary, 2004.Nattiv, A; Agostini, R; Drinkwater, B; Yeager, K. Clinical Sports Medicine, 1994.Halmi, K; et. al. American Journal of Psychiatry, November 2000.Whittal, M; Agras, W; Gould, R. Behavioral Therapy, 1999.Woodside, D. American Journal of Psychiatry, 2001.American Psychiatric Association Task Force on DSM-IV, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders: DSM-IV. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Ed, Text Revision, Washington, DC, 2000.Kelley R. Newsweek, Nov. 15, 2006.International Academy of Eating Disorders.National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders.National Eating Disorders Association.

What Is An Eating Disorder

Eating disorders include;anorexia nervosa, a form of self-starvation;;bulimia nervosa, in which individuals engage in repetitive cycles of binge-eating alternating with self-induced vomiting or starvation;;binge-eating disorder , which resembles bulimia but without compensatory behaviors to avoid weight gain;;;avoidant restrictive food intake disorder in which people may have lack of interest in food, avoid certain textures or types of foods, or have fears and anxieties about consequences of eating unrelated to shape or weight concerns and other specified feeding and eating disorders . Eating disorders can occur in any age group, gender, ethnic or racial group.

Anorexia nervosa and bulimia are psychiatric illnesses that center on food and its consumption and are usually characterized by:

  • Excessive preoccupation with food and dissatisfaction with ones body shape or weight
  • A compulsion to engage in extreme eating habits and unhealthy methods of weight control such as: o;;; Fasting or binge-eating o;;; Chewing and spitting or regurgitating food o;; Excessive laxative, diuretic, or diet pill abuse.

These unhealthy behaviors and preoccupations can develop into a consuming passion;and come to interfere with physical, psychological and social well-being.

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Other Specified Feeding Or Eating Disorder

The majority of those with eating disorders do not fall within the guidelines for anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorder and are classified as OSFED. To be diagnosed as having OSFED a person must present with a feeding or eating behaviors that cause clinically significant distress and impairment in areas of functioning, but do not meet the full criteria for any of the other feeding and eating disorders.

A diagnosis might then be allocated that specifies a specific reason why the presentation does not meet the specifics of another disorder . The following are further examples for OSFED:

Medical Complications and Associated Features

  • Weight loss or faltering growth

  • Generalized emotional difficulties, sometimes referred to as food avoidance emotional disorder

  • Mirroring of medical complications and associated features of anorexia nervosa

How To Support A Loved One

Eating Disorders Acute and Chronic Health Impacts Part 1 of 2

It can be difficult for friends and family to approach someone they love with an eating disorder. They may not know what to say, or worry about isolating the person.

If you notice that someone you love is exhibiting signs of an eating disorder, however, speak up. Sometimes people with eating disorders are afraid or unable to ask for help, so youll need to extend the olive branch.

When approaching a loved one, you should:

  • Pick a private location where you can both talk openly without distractions.
  • Choose a time when neither of you will be rushed.
  • Come from a loving place instead of an accusatory one.
  • Explain why youre concerned, without judging or criticizing. If possible, refer to specific situations and elaborate on why it caused concern.
  • Be prepared for some denial, defensiveness, or resistance. Some people may get mad and lash out. If this is the case, try to stay calm and focused.
  • Be patient, and let them know that if they dont want help now, youll be there if anything changes.
  • Go into the conversation knowing some solutions, but dont suggest them off the bat. Only share resources if theyre open to taking next steps.
  • Encourage them to get help. Offer to help them find a therapist or go with them to the doctor if theyre scared. A doctors visit is crucial to help someone with an eating disorder get on track and to make sure theyre getting the treatment they need.
  • Focus on their feelings instead of physical descriptions.

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Psychological Signs Of Bulimia Nervosa

  • Secretive behaviour around eating. Bulimics often wont like to eat around others.
  • Sneaking or hiding food
  • Going through large amounts of food quickly
  • Overuse of laxatives or purgatives
  • Frequent trips to the bathroom, often immediately after eating
  • Displays periods of abnormally large appetite
  • In some cases, sneaky behavior as bulimics attempt to dispose of their vomit

What Are The Types Of Eating Disorders

  • Anorexia involves a severe restriction of calories; there may be a fear of weight gain and strict “rules” about eating.
  • Bulimia may involve these same fears and restrictions, but also involves binging and purging. This involves vomiting, exercise or use of laxatives.
  • People with binge eating disorder eat large amounts of food often without attention to hunger or fullness.
  • anorexia nervosa: a preoccupation with thinness and dieting that leads to excessive weight loss
  • bulimia nervosa: secret and regular binge eating of large quantities of food, followed by trying to get rid of the excess calories
  • binge eating disorder : binge eating similar to bulimia, but not followed by attempting to get rid of the calories
  • eating disorder not otherwise specified : a pattern of eating disorder symptoms that do not fit the diagnoses for the other three disorders

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Types Of Eating Disorders

A serious, potentially life-threatening eating disorder characterized by self-starvation and excessive weight loss.


  • Food restriction leading to significantly low body weight in the context of age, sex, development, and physical health

  • Intense fear of weight gain or becoming fat

  • Persistent behavior interfering with weight gain despite low weight, such as fasting or excessive exercise

  • Disturbed experience of ones body weight or shape, influenced by self-evaluation or persistent lack of recognizing the seriousness of current low body weight

  • Restricting behavior or binge eating and purging behaviors

Medical Complications and Associated Features

  • Signs of depression, such as depressed mood, social withdrawal, irritability, insomnia, and diminished interest in sex

  • Obsessive-compulsive features, both related and unrelated to food

  • Elevated suicide risk
  • Delayed puberty, lack of development

  • Hormonal imbalance

  • Gastrointestinal complications such as stomach aches, bloating, constipation, and acid reflux

  • Vital sign disturbances, such as dangerously low blood pressure

  • Loss of and/or weakened heart muscle

  • Heart palpitations and chest pain

  • Bradycardia or tachycardia

  • Heart failure

  • Edema

Common Types Of Eating Disorders

Eating Disorder

Although the term eating is in the name, eating disorders are about more than food. Theyre complex mental health conditions that often require the intervention of medical and psychological experts to alter their course.

These disorders are described in the American Psychiatric Associations Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fifth edition .

In the United States alone, an estimated 20 million women and 10 million men have or have had an eating disorder at some point in their life .

This article describes 6 of the most common types of eating disorders and their symptoms.

Eating disorders are a range of psychological conditions that cause unhealthy eating habits to develop. They might start with an obsession with food, body weight, or body shape.

In severe cases, eating disorders can cause serious health consequences and may even result in death if left untreated.

Those with eating disorders can have a variety of symptoms. However, most include the severe restriction of food, food binges, or purging behaviors like vomiting or over-exercising.

Although eating disorders can affect people of any gender at any life stage, theyre most often reported in adolescents and young women. In fact, up to 13% of youth may experience at least one eating disorder by the age of 20 .

Summary Eating disorders are mental health conditions marked by an obsession with food or body shape. They can affect anyone but are most prevalent among young women.

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How To Get Help For Teenagers With Eating Disorders

When parents notice any of the above signs in their teens, they can reach out to a treatment center by phone for help in getting an eating disorder diagnosis and treatment. During the call, the admissions specialists will assist in finding the perfect level of treatment for the teen, providing them with much-needed support and compassion. Parents will remain involved in every step of the way, which helps heal the family unit while helping teens become and remain fully recovered.

After speaking with admissions specialists, everyone can work together to find a suitable time for teens to come down and check into the treatment center. Parents are encouraged to accompany their teens and meet the treatment team, learn about the program, and provide their support. They will also have opportunities to return for family programming that brings everyone together in healing.

To get started in acquiring eating disorder treatment for their teens, parents can call the team at Clementine at 866-678-0923. Admissions specialists are always available to take the call and start the assessment process right away. Families can trust that they will receive the support they seek without judgment and with the compassion needed to make a full recovery.

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