Eating disorders are about much more than how much a person weighs or the self-image they have. Eating disorders can be the result of serious emotional or physical trauma that takes a team of qualified professionals to help patients work through to be healthy again. Eating disorders are the most deadly of all psychiatric disorders. Eating disorder counseling is available for both those suffering from these conditions and their family and loved ones.
The Severity of Eating Disorders
Eating disorders can affect people of all ages. To understand the severity of eating disorders, it is helpful to first know what kind of eating disorders exist.
Eating disorders can affect people of all ages, living in Arizona and every state throughout the country. To understand the severity of eating disorders, it is helpful to first know what kind of eating disorders exist.
Anorexia is perhaps the best known eating disorder, but few people understand how devastating it can be. Anorexia is characterized by having a very low body weight and a distorted image of body weight. People with this eating disorder typically restrict their calorie intake so that they eat very little and lose a dramatic amount of weight. People with this eating disorder may also exercise excessively and abuse diet pills, enemas or laxatives.
The physical effects of anorexia nervosa can include a slow heart rate, low blood pressure, fainting, fatigue, hair loss, and osteoporosis. Those who suffer from this eating disorder are also at an increased risk for heart failure. Left untreated by a qualified eating disorder counselor and other health professionals, anorexia nervosa can easily cost a person their life.
Like anorexia, those suffering from bulimia nervosa have a distorted body image. Those suffering from this eating disorder may secretly eat very large quantities of food in one sitting and then try to purge themselves of those calories by forcing vomiting. Others may force vomiting after each meal or even small snacks. Those suffering from bulimia may also misuse laxatives, diuretics, enemas and diet pills.
The health effects of bulimia can include an electrolyte imbalance that can lead to other health problems, irregular heartbeat, heart failure, tooth decay, peptic ulcer and pancreatitis.
Binge Eating Disorder
Binge eating is the third distinct eating disorder, and like bulimia nervosa, it involves bingeing, but does not typically involve purging afterward. Those with binge eating disorder feel an uncontrollable urge to eat large quantities of food in a very short period of time. These binging episodes may be followed by periods of intense guilt and shame.
Some of the health consequences of binge eating disorder can include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, elevated triglyceride levels, Type II diabetes mellitus, and gallbladder disease.
Besides the severe damage that eating disorders can do to a person’s physical health, they also have a long-lasting impact on mental health. Those with eating disorders get caught up in a cycle of shame and distorted body image that can be hard to break. Many become isolated as a result, which can further feed their self-hatred. Obsessive tendencies also become part of an eating disorder, including rituals around eating food or exercising. Soon, the eating disorder may become the primary focus, taking over every aspect of the person’s life.
Relationships with friends, family and loved ones suffer as the person suffering from the eating disorder becomes unable to participate in healthy expressions of love or friendship.
It is essential that those suffering from an eating disorder get the help they need as soon as possible, before the disorder has a chance to inflict further physical and emotional harm. Empowerment Treatment and Counseling provides services for people suffering from all types of eating disorders, as well as their family and loved ones. We offer treatment and counseling to help those suffering eating disorders to heal. Our eating disorder counseling aims to uncover the emotional wounds that are behind the disorders in order to heal them. Every dietitian and counselor on our team has extensive training and experience in helping people overcome eating disorders. Contact us in Arizona today to learn more about our eating disorder counseling and how you or a loved one can be freed from the life-threatening grip of these serious conditions.
Empowerment Treatment & Counseling
5490 W Union Hills Dr. Building D Suite 200
Glendale, AZ 85308