- May 3, 2020
AnorexiaNervosa refers to the persistentsearch for extreme thinness that meddles with the satisfaction ofobligations to the self and others since it creates an extreme andunreasonable fear of becoming fat. In the end, a pattern ofstarvation-initiated physical and mental changes affect a person’scontrol over eating and spurs more diligent endeavors to reduceweight. The outcome is a genuinely endless loop of hunger, weightloss, and fear that will result in a destructive trap if theprocedure is not recognized and reversed.
Whatcauses the fear of weight gain and a distorted perception has beendiscovered and explained through behavioral theories, for example,the “Family System`s Theory” (Moncrieff-Boyd,Byrne, & Nunn, 2014).The family is a very important contributor towards individual’ssocialization, and that can affect them in several ways. As Treasure(2016) wrote, “Families serve as the matrix of our identity” andthis is true families and interactions help individuals to developan idea of who they are and how to fit in. In the Family System`sTheory, there are two different types of families afflicted by thisproblem with eating disorders. In a family that has instability, itis believed that the adolescent may subconsciously develop thisdisorder as a coping mechanism, or as a way to bring two parents backtogether over a common concern, this concern being the adolescentMoncrieff-Boyd,Byrne, & Nunn,2014). The second type of family afflicted by this problem isopposite of the first type. It is when the parents exercise all ofthe control and power and are inflexible to change, which in turnleads to their child breaking away from the control by unknowinglydeveloping this disease.
Thesecond theory that explains alludes to methods usedin managing with four types of demands, which include the demandsduring adulthood, failure to accept one’s weaknesses, fear ofindependence from family, and sexual desires (Treasure, 2016).Instead of coming to terms with these challenges and obstacles,people face it by practicing excessive weight loss and compulsivefasting. By doing so, they prove to themselves and others that theywould not let anyone else dictate them. Weight loss becomesachievement, and watching others eat garbage while they exercisecontrol and willpower by eating nothing gives them pride. However, assad as it is, this may be the only sense of pride and achievementthese patients feel. Many Anorexics suffer from horrible mood swingswhich include depression and obvious self-doubt. According toStroe-Kunoldet al. (2016),anorexic patients are overly sensitive to comments made about theirweight or appearance. These patients often move into a depression,and overtime begin to withdraw from close relationships and haveisolated social interaction (EDV-Psychological Effects).
Throughtherapy and rehabilitation, patients are fortunately able to rebuildtheir social relationships and regress from their depression but itmay also cause brain abnormalities that cannot easily resolve. Thesebrain abnormalities, otherwise known as “cognitive deficits”impair the person`s ability to properly function mentally.
Researchersin recent years have discovered that these cognitive deficits mayalso be due to structural changes in the brains of anorexics (Naumannet al., 2014).With that being said, one clearly loses the capacity to think or formproper decisions on their own because of this saddening disorder.This disease can truly wreck someone`s life from the psychologicaleffects alone. It is devastating that there is much more damage thatis done than just psychological damage.
Anorexiacauses many problems in the body system. For instance, stomach aches,bloating, and constipation are very common gastrointestinal symptomsall of which lead to another discomforting symptom, reflux. This typeof reflux causes food to move into the esophagus and sometimes themouth this can increase the chance of developing bulimia. As far asthe previous medical concerns go, they may be the least of one`sconcerns. Anorexia may also lead to endocrine complications, such ashypoglycemia (Naumannet al., 2014).Hypoglycemia is defined as the dangerous lowering of one`s bloodsugar level. From a perspective of someone who has dealt with mildhypoglycemia, it is extremely exhausting and very scary. Fainting canoften occur when hypoglycemia, along with extreme shaking and drasticmood swings. After one`s blood sugar has returned to normal, theperson is still left with a dreadful migraine and intense fatigue. Ifsomeone can avoid dealing with this, I highly recommend it.Unfortunately, mild hypoglycemia is very common in this disease(Naumannet al., 2014).Anorexia may also produce amenorrhea, the absence of menstruation.The loss of menstruation conveys the message that these young womenare not ready to grow up yet, which strongly correlates with thebehavioral theory of the four demands.
Whileall these complications are dangerous, Osteopenia and Osteoporosisare among some of the most dangerous medical complications of. Early in the development of Anorexia, one maydevelop Osteopenia reduced bone density (Barbarich-Marsteller,2012).Adolescents facing this problem have a challenging time regainingbone density once they have recovered. Osteoporosis occurs afterOsteopenia has developed. It is a medical condition in which thebones become brittle and fragile due to hormone changes and in thecase of an anorexic, due to malnutrition. According toBarbarich-Marsteller(2012),over fifty per cent of anorexic women have been diagnosed withosteoporosis. This to me is an astoundingly large percentage,especially when one takes into account that someone suffering fromOsteoporosis may never make a full recovery from it. Either we needto find a cure for Osteoporosis or find a solution to save thetroubled minds of the young to help prevent them from ever dealingwith this. The reason why this disease so commonly occurs in anorexicwomen is that extreme weight loss may cause the debilitation of thebody`s function to produce estrogen which helps keep bones strong andhealthy. Fortunately, certain medications help restore bone density,but it is very unlikely that the bones will ever return to normal.
Thecauses and effects of this disease are huge, but they can be reversedusing various solutions. Throughout the country, there are thousandsof treatment facilities taking in new, sick patients and releasingrecovered patients each and every day. Many patients will be put in aresidential treatment facility these all have a wide range ofspecialists including MD`s, psychologists, nutritionists, and fitnessexperts. Patients will undergo three different types of therapypsychotherapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and family therapy(Moncrieff-Boyd,Byrne, & Nunn, 2014).All of which have proven very effective in mentally curing thesepatients. While there are no medications out there to cure anorexia,all physicians will prescribe medicines for the physical symptomsmost will also prescribe anti-depressants for these patients. Ifsomeone feels they may be in danger of anorexia, there are self-helpmethods proven to be effective. They include but are not limited to,staying away from fashion magazines, staying away from a scale,pampering oneself, and staying active. As terrible as this diseaseis, it is reassuring to know that those afflicted by an eatingdisorder can seek help. It is good to know that where there`s aproblem, there`s also a solution.
Thephysical and psychological symptoms and complications of thisdisorder seem to be never ending this disorder affects almost everysystem in our body in some way. The importance of this issue isoverwhelming. The fact that there are twenty million women in thiscountry who afflicted by this disease proves that there is asignificant need to raise more awareness. This statistic does noteven represent the number of males in the country that are affectedby this disease, or even the world population affected by thisdisease (Moncrieff-Boyd,Byrne, & Nunn, 2014).We need to strive for better and stop letting the meaningless mediaalong with other factors tell us what we should and shouldn`t looklike. Rome was not constructed in one day, but they were layingbricks every hour. It`s time we lay our bricks and defeat theever-so-powerful disease known as Anorexia.
Writingthis paper enabled me to see how anorexia is caused, the effects ithas on an individual, the effects it has on others and learn aboutdifferent kinds of help a person with anorexia could seek for theirdisorder. As I read about anorexia, I found out some very interestingthings from the different articles. All of the articles said thatanorexia usually occurs in teenagers and people in their twenties aswell as some people in their early thirties. The rate of women withanorexia is a lot greater than that of men. Several of the articlesdiscussed the risks of anorexia on an individual. Considering all ofthe health risks which I read about I defiantly realize now just howdeadly anorexia can be.
Barbarich-Marsteller,N. C. (2012). Anorexianervosa: Symptoms, treatment, and neurobiology.New York: Nova Science Publishers.
Moncrieff-Boyd,J., Byrne, S., & Nunn, K. (January 02, 2014). Disgust and: confusion between self and non-self. Advancesin Eating Disorders: Theory, Research and Practice, 2, 1,4-18.
Naumann,E., Tuschen-Caffier, B., Voderholzer, U., & Svaldi, J. (January01, 2014). On the role of sadness in the psychopathology of anorexianervosa. PsychiatryResearch,215, 3,711-7.
Stroe-Kunold,E., Friederich, H. C., Stadnitski, T., Wesche, D., Herzog, W.,Schwab, M., & Wild, B. (January 01, 2016). Emotional Intoleranceand Core Features of : A Dynamic Interaction duringInpatient Treatment? Results from a Longitudinal Diary Study. PlosOne, 11, 5.)
Treasure,J. (January 01, 2016). Applying evidence-based management to anorexianervosa. PostgraduateMedical Journal, 92, 1091,525-31.