Treatment of eating disorders

Severe cases of anorexia require immediate hospitalization for rehydration and nutritional rehabilitation to start gaining weight. Medication is aimed at reducing binge eating, vomiting, treating depression or anxiety disorder associated with food. Treatment also includes education, and psychotherapy.

Nutritional education is made by the doctor who establishes a program, a routine meal, a good diet. Psychotherapy helps correct evaluation, identifies wrong beliefs and goals unconsciously behind compulsive behavior and emphasizing quality and strength. No man can use his skills if he is not convinced. Last but not least, the patient is taught to take care of himself, to have a regular schedule of meals, eating healthy foods, to take vitamins, mineral supplements and do regular exercise, but moderate.

Risk Factors

Gender: girls and young women are more prone to eating disorders than boys or men

Age: often around the age of 20 years;

Family influences: those who feel little secure in the family, whose parents or siblings who are extremely critical or tease them about physical features;

Heredity: disorders occur more often in people who have relatives suffering from bulimia or anorexia;

Emotional disorders: people with depression, anxiety disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Patients with anorexia have perfectionist traits, and those with bulimia have problems in controlling impulsivity;

Excessive physical exercise: the implication for competitive sports shows a higher risk of developing eating disorders.


Anorexia can cause more complications and has a much higher risk of causing death than bulimia. Both may equally affect health. If anorexia, IT is estimated 1 out of 10 patients will die from complications arising from this disorder.

Such complications can be:

-cardiovascular disease – irregular heart rhythm, decreased cardiac muscle size;

-hormonal changes – changes in reproductive hormones or thyroid hormones, leading to amenorrhea, infertility, developmental delays;

-unbalancing the supply of minerals and electrolytes. The body needs an adequate level of minerals, especially calcium and potassium to maintain heart rhythm;

-damage to nerve endings;

-digestive problems.

Complications of bulimia are:

-problems with the gums and teeth;

-low potassium levels;

-digestive problems – irritation of the esophagus and rectal wall;

-drug abuse.

And for binge-eating, complications include:

-high blood pressure;

-increased cholesterol;

-cardiovascular diseases;

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, one in a hundred girls, aged between 12 and 18 has anorexia. In the first year of high school, between 4.5 and 18% of girls have bulimic behaviors. Most fail to stop bulimic or anorexic behavior without professional help. Untreated, the disease can become chronic and can cause death.

Psychotherapy says that people with eating disorders use food and eating to communicate their feelings of inadequacy. And the feeling of inadequacy is due to their failure to manage to live with others.

Denial, avoidance and repression are associated with eating disorders and related characteristics of a series of defense mechanisms learned in family of origin.

Being preoccupied by food, body and exercise, an anorexic person can no longer focus on their feelings. This system protects her denial of responsibility to handle the demands of everyday life.

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