Are You Going to Eat or Not? Teenagers Are the Most Susceptible Group to Anorexia

For people who are prone to obesity, every time before eating, they may worry about whether they will eat too much again, causing the number on the scale to increase accidentally. Although everyone knows that obesity is one of the factors that cause many diseases, extreme slimness is also a disease. Some people may be influenced by universal values ​​and control their diet excessively, leading to anorexia. This article will take you through the causes, symptoms, and possible treatments for anorexia.

What is anorexia

The full name of Anorexia is Anorexia nervosa. It is a disease caused by the mutual influence of psychology and physiology. There are many reasons for its occurrence, including the following three main types:

  1. Genes:
    Although there is no definite research indicating that genes have a direct impact on anorexia, inherited “personality traits” may be one of the causes of anorexia. In addition, if someone in the family suffers from anorexia, the chance that other family members will develop anorexia will also increase.
  2. Psychological factors:
    Anxiety, lack of self-confidence and a personality that is easily influenced by the opinions of others are the most common groups of anorexia patients. In addition, some mental illnesses, such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), may cause patients to have a higher chance of developing anorexia than the average person due to pressure or perceptions from the external environment.
  3. Environmental factors:
    Environmental factors are often inseparable from psychological factors. Various weight loss advertisements, negative perceptions of obesity, or being bullied by others may all be the driving forces behind anorexia. And because teenagers are very sensitive to social media, they are prone to it. Peer pressure makes anorexia more likely to develop in teenagers.

9 symptoms of anorexia

Have you ever heard of a magic mirror? Due to changes in the curved surface of the mirror, the self reflected when standing in front of the mirror may appear tall, short, fat, thin, etc. In the eyes of an anorexic patient, no matter what mirror he looks at, he may have the thought “Oh my God! I am too They may be strongly dissatisfied with their body shape, have distorted obsessions and images about “thinness”, and feel guilty about eating. Here are 9 possible symptoms of anorexia:

  1. You are underweight without realizing it, even far below the BMI standard of 18.5.
  2. Deliberate fasting, but not intermittent fasting based on rigorous research; even if you eat, you will eat very little, and you will strongly avoid eating processed foods high in sugar or fat.
  3. In order to reduce their weight more effectively, patients with anorexia may purchase weight-loss drugs. In addition to weight loss, other complications may also occur due to the side effects of the drugs.
  4. You may often feel dizzy, have dry skin, or experience hair loss.
  5. Women with anorexia may experience symptoms of menopause.
  6. Since exercise is considered by ordinary people to be an effective way to lose weight, patients with anorexia may do more exercise than the human body can bear in order to lose weight.
  7. People with anorexia may use diuretics and laxatives to expel urine and feces from the body in order to maximize weight loss.
  8. Symptoms of constipation or abdominal pain occur.
  9. Lack of energy and insomnia.

Effects of anorexia on the body

Eating is an important way for the body to obtain nutrition. Not eating enough will not only reduce the supply of nutrients to various organs and tissues of the human body, but also slow down the production of energy, making anorexic patients weak and inactive. In the case of severe lack of nutrition, , causing damage to organs such as the brain or kidneys. Even if the condition is controlled later, the damage may not be fully recovered. Among mental illnesses, anorexia has the highest fatality rate. The following are complications associated with anorexia:

  1. Anemia
  2. Osteoporosis
  3. Muscle loss
  4. Menopause
  5. Decreased testosterone
  6. Electrolyte abnormalities
  7. Kidney problems

3 ways to treat anorexia

Generally speaking, there are few effective ways to prevent anorexia. However, if you find that a friend or family member has anorexia such as not eating or being underweight, early detection and treatment can reduce the harm of anorexia to the body.

Regarding the treatment of anorexia, it is necessary to focus on both psychological and physical aspects, and it is not like a cold, which can be improved immediately within a few days. Once recovered, how to maintain a stable eating habit is a very important issue, otherwise stress may still cause mood swings, leading to a recurrence of anorexia. The following are related treatments:

  1. Nutritional supplementation:
    If the patient is in severe nutritional deficiencies, the patient will be given an intravenous drip and the necessary nutrients will be supplemented after hospitalization. Although the “cause” of anorexia cannot be eradicated, the “effect” caused by anorexia can be reduced. In order to To prevent the patient from refusing to eat, nasogastric tube feeding may be used in severe cases.
  2. Psychotherapy:
    The most difficult part of psychotherapy is often to make the patient realize that he is sick and needs help from others. In addition to individual patient-specific treatments, the treatment of anorexia also includes family companionship and support. Generally speaking, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a commonly used method to treat most mental illnesses. The purpose is to improve patients’ low self-confidence and other negative psychology, thereby establishing a positive impression of eating and rekindling the desire to eat; and for future For adult patients with anorexia, family therapy is an effective treatment method. The guardian observes and controls the patient’s diet to maintain nutrition and restore weight. In addition, there is also a method called group therapy, which enhances the effect of treatment through the interaction of anorexic patients. However, this method may also cause patients to compare behaviors and compete with each other to be the thinnest. Therefore, detailed methods , still relies on the professional judgment of the physician.
  3. Drug treatment:
    There is currently no drug that can directly treat anorexia, but the use of antidepressants as appropriate to improve the patient’s psychological condition may be helpful.

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