Anorexia Nervosa - Topic Overview
- Weigh much less than is healthy or
- Are very afraid of gaining weight.
- Refuse to
stay at a normal weight.
- Think they are overweight even when they
are very thin.
- Deny the seriousness of their low body weight.
- Base their self-esteem on how they view their body weight and shape.
Their lives become focused on controlling their weight.
- Obsess about food, weight, and
- Strictly limit how much they eat.
Exercise a lot, even
when they are sick.
- Vomit or use laxatives or water pills
(diuretics) to avoid weight gain.
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.
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