Diagnosing Anorexia: Do You Have A Problem with Food?
The first step toward a diagnosis is to admit the existence of an eating disorder. Often, the patient needs to be compelled by a parent or others to see a doctor because the patient may deny and resist the problem. Some patients may even self-diagnose their condition as an allergy to carbohydrates, because after being on a restricted diet, eating carbohydrates can produce gastrointestinal problems, dizziness, weakness, and palpitations. This may lead such people to restrict carbohydrates even more severely.
What are the warning signs of Anorexia?
• Deliberate self-starvation with weight lossFor more information: http://www.familydoctor.org/handouts/063.html
What is Anorexia?
Anorexia nervosa is an illness that usually occurs in teenage girls,
but it can also occur in teenage boys, and adult women and men. People
with anorexia are obsessed with being thin. They lose a lot of weight
and are terrified of gaining weight. They believe they are fat even though
they are very thin. Anorexia isn't just a problem with food or weight.
It's an attempt to use food and weight to deal with emotional problems.
Anorexia nervosa often includes depression, irritability, withdrawal,
and peculiar behaviors such as compulsive rituals, strange eating habits,
and division of foods into "good/safe" and "bad/dangerous"
categories. Person may have low tolerance for change and new situations;
may fear growing up and assuming adult responsibilities and an adult lifestyle.
May be overly engaged with or dependent on parents or family. Dieting
may represent avoidance of, or ineffective attempts to cope with, the
demands of a new life stage such as adolescence.
Tell to someone you trust (i.e., parent, sibling, friend, teacher, clergy,
counselor, etc.). You're going to need support, for the fear and shame
can be overwhelming. The behavior is addictive, and the disease is deadly.
You're risking your life if you hide behind silence. Early intervention
is key in overcoming the disease.
If You Don't Seek Help?
You're playing Russian Roulette with your life. Here are the risks associated with eating disorders:
The list goes on and on. For more information:
Worried About a Friend?
National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD)
National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA)
Nervosa and Related Eating Disorders, Inc. (ANRED)
Laureate Psychiatric Clinic and Hospital
Disorders Awareness and Prevention, 603 Stewart Street, Suite 803, Seattle,
Harvard Eating Disorders Centers (http://www.hedc.org)
American Dietetic Association, 216 W. Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, Illinois
60606. Call (800-877-1600) or (312-899-0040) or (http://www.eatright.org/)
The American Psychiatric Association. Call (888-357-7924) or (http://www.psych.org/)
The American Psychological Association. Call (202-783-2077) or (http://www.psychologicalscience.org/)
The National Association of Social Workers. Call (202-408-8600) or (http://www.naswdc.org/)
The American Psychiatric Nurses Association. Call (703-243-2443) or (http://www.apna.org/)
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (http://www.aacap.org/)
Other useful eating disorders web sites:
Site for family members and patients (http://closetoyou.org/eatingdisorders/)
site assists in finding the right therapist
An online catalog that offers kitchen products, bathroom helpers and daily living products for people of all ages and abilities or disabilities.(http://www.dynamic-living.com)
GreySheeters Anonymous is a twelve step fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength, and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from compulsive overeating. (http://www.greysheet.org/)