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Anorexia Nervosa Health Center

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Anorexia Nervosa - Topic Overview

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If your doctor thinks that you may have an eating disorder, he or she will compare your weight with the expected weight for someone of your height and age. He or she will also check your heart, lungs, blood pressure, skin, and hair to look for problems caused by not eating enough. You may also have blood tests or X-rays.

Your doctor may ask questions about how you feel. It is common for a treatable mental health problem such as depression or anxiety to play a part in an eating disorder.

All people who have anorexia need treatment. Even if you, your child, or someone else you care about has only a couple of the signs of an eating disorder, get help now. Early treatment gives the best chance of overcoming anorexia.

Treatment can help you get back to and stay at a healthy weight. It can also help you learn good eating habits and learn to feel better about yourself. Because anorexia is both a physical and emotional problem, you may work with a doctor, a dietitian, and a counselor.

If your weight has dropped too low, you will need to be treated in a hospital.

Anorexia can take a long time to overcome, and it is common to fall back into unhealthy habits. If you are having problems, don't try to handle them on your own. Get help now.

It can be very scary to realize that someone you care about has an eating disorder. But you can help.

If you think your child has anorexia:

  • Talk to him or her. Tell your child why you are worried. Let him or her know you care.
  • Make an appointment for you and your child to meet with a doctor or a counselor.

If you're worried about someone you know:

  • Tell someone who can make a difference, like a parent, teacher, counselor, or doctor. A person with anorexia may insist that help isn't needed, but it is. The sooner the person gets treatment, the sooner he or she will be healthy again.

Learning about anorexia:

Being diagnosed:

Getting treatment:

Ongoing concerns:

Living with anorexia:

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: August 27, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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