Home Health Mental Health How to Know if a Person has an Eating Disorder

How to Know if a Person has an Eating Disorder

(2 votes, average 3.00 out of 5)
Written by Isaac&Carmen Gutierrez   

This article is very detailed on eating disorder so please read carefully. I have seen this eating disorder myself and it is a very sad situation. So what is an eating disorder you might ask? An eating disorder is an abnormal eating disorder, either insufficient intake of food or an excess of food. Yet eating disorder is very complex and it is not fully understood. Eating disorder has affected around 10 million females and 1 million males in U.S alone.


One eating disorder is called Bulimia. Bulimia is characterized in indulge overeating, also vomiting, sometimes called purging; fasting, the use of laxatives, enemas, diuretics, and over exercising are also common. Most people, which have bulimia, occur during the age 13 to 20 years that have suffer of obesity. Bulimia is hard to detect not like anorexia that’s easier to detect. When a patient goes to a physician, the physician my look for clues like sores on there fingers.

Reason is, because people that have bulimia attend to gag. Sticking there fingers down there throat so to induce vomit after they ate a meal. The diagnostic criteria utilized includes, recurring episodes of indulge eating (a discrete episode of overeating during which the individual feels out of control of consumption) compensated for by excessive or inappropriate measures taken to avoid gaining weight. One type of bulimia is self-induce vomiting (usually by triggering the gag reflex) to rapidly remove food from the body before it can be digested, or use laxatives, diuretics, or enemas.

The second type is exercise or fast excessively after a binge to offset the caloric intake after eating. Purging-type bulimics may also exercise or fast, but as a secondary form of weight control. The effect on bulimics, are involve rapid and out-of-control eating, or the stomach hurts from over-extension, followed by self-induced vomiting. These can be repeated several times a week or in very serious cases several times a day. Here are some of the after effects of bulimics:

Chronic gastric reflux after eating Dehydration caused by frequent vomiting Electrolyte imbalance, which can lead to cardiac arrhythmia, cardiac arrest, and even death inflammation of the esophagus Oral trauma, in which repetitive insertion of fingers or other objects causes lacerations to the lining of the mouth or throat delayed emptying Constipation Enlarged glands in the neck, under the jaw line Peptic ulcers Calluses or scars on back of hands due to repeated trauma from incisors Constant weight fluctuations Severe dental caries the erosion of tooth enamel Swollen salivary glands

Patient’s physician may determine if the patient has an eating disorder.

anorexiaAnorexia is an eating disorder by extremely low body weight, distorted body image and an obsessive fear of gaining weight. It is also a result of starvation and the inability of stay in a minimal weight, that is consider normal for age and height and body built. People that have anorexia can be seen in different behaviors that are clues of the eating disorder:

A refusal to maintain body weight at or above a minimally normal weight for age and height, usually less than 85% of ideal body weight Fear of gaining weight or becoming fat Disturbance in the way one's body weight or shape is experienced, with denial of current low body weight Amenorrhea in post menstrual females of at least 3 menstrual cycles

People with anorexia should be questioned about their current weight, highest weight, lowest weight, exercise habits, and menstrual cycles. Further questioning should inquire with regard to eating habits, presence or absence of self-induced vomiting/binge eating, etc. Major depression disorder has been reported in up to 50% of people with anorexia. People with anorexia, often have these symptoms constipation, early satiety, hypothermia, nausea, hair loss, and fatigue.

People with anorexia may present weight loss. They may attempt to hide their weight loss by wearing bulky clothing or many layers. Anorexia has one of the highest mortality rates of all psychiatric disorders, with rates reported from 5-18%. Approximately 50% of people will recover with treatment and maintain a normal weight but often not without relapses and with the aid of multiple treatment modalities.

Mortality is often due to suicide and less frequently due to complications of starvation. Individual counseling can help someone with anorexia. If the person is young, counseling may involve the whole family. Support groups may also be a part of treatment. In support groups, patients, and families meet and share what they’ve been through. If any family member seems to know if someone has an eating disorder, please approach the situation with love, patience and an open mind.

Comments (1)add comment

Tom said:

Truly informative. My wife had gastric bypass surgery and has lost 110 lbs. Many of her health issues simply disappeared.
July 24, 2010
Votes: +0

Write comment
You must be logged in to post a comment. Please register if you do not have an account yet.