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Anorexia Nervosa

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What Is the Outlook for People With Anorexia?

Anorexia, like other eating disorders, gets worse the longer it is left untreated. The sooner the disorder is diagnosed and treated, the better the outcome. Anorexia can be treated, allowing the person to return to a healthy weight; although, many people with anorexia deny they have a problem and refuse treatment.

Although treatment is possible, the risk of relapse is high. Recovery from anorexia usually requires long-term treatment as well as a strong commitment by the individual. Support of family members and other loved ones can help ensure that the person receives the needed treatment.

Can Anorexia Be Prevented?

Although it might not be possible to prevent all cases of anorexia, it is helpful to begin treatment in people as soon as they begin to have symptoms. In addition, teaching and encouraging healthy eating habits and realistic attitudes about food and body image also might be helpful in preventing the development or worsening of eating disorders.

When Should I Seek Help for Anorexia?

If you suspect that you or someone you know has anorexia or another eating disorder, seek help immediately. Eating disorders can become increasingly dangerous the longer they go untreated. In severe cases, eating disorders can be fatal.

 

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WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg, MD on June 21, 2012
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