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The two main types of eating disorders are anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa; the third category mentioned above includes several variations of eating disorders, which, in some way, are similar to the two main types. Earlier, binge eating was defined as a separate eating disorder; today, however, it is regarded as one of eating disorders not otherwise specified. These days, in the United States, about twenty-four million of people suffer from an eating disorder, and among other mental illnesses, it is eating disorders that have the highest mortality rate (ANAD).
Causes of eating disorders are various and complex, and they include biological, genetic, psychological, behavioral and social factors (National Institute of Mental Health). Risk factors include having a history of eating disorders in a family as well as substance abuse and depression; being criticized for their weight, body shape, eating habits; having particular characteristics, such as an anxiety disorder having an obsessive personality, being a perfectionist etc.; having difficult relationship with friends and/or family members; experiencing stressful situations; having particular experiences, such as emotional or sexual abuse etc. (NHS Choices, 2015).
People who have anorexia nervosa try to keep their weight as low as possible by any means. This disorder is characterized by “emaciation, a relentless pursuit of thinness and unwillingness to maintain a normal or healthy weight, a distortion of body image and intense fear of gaining weight, a lack of menstruation among girls and women, and extremely disturbed eating behavior” (U. S. Department of Health and Human Services). People with anorexia nervosa perceive themselves as overweight and try to lose weight resorting to exercising, dieting, misusing diuretics, laxatives, and inducing vomiting. Such serious symptoms
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http://www.healthyplace.com (accessed April 23, 2012). This website gives an introduction about the eating disorders that have been on the rise following the twenty first century in today’s younger generation and in children born after the millennium. As the world became a global village, the rises of McDonald’s and KFC’s junk food have become popular.
These disorders occur due to a mix of several factors including personal, familial and cultural aspects. This paper will evaluate the major causes of these eating disorders, their prevalence in the population, their diagnosis as well as the recommended interventions and treatments.
This disorder is noticed in people of all age groups, all races and it affects both the sexes. Though this disorder is found in all races but its incidence amongst the whites is higher as compared to other races. It is more commonly seen in girls but about ten percent of the cases are boys.
They involve extreme attitudes towards weight loss and food issues. Unlike in the past, when eating disorders were considered to be largely the psychological concerns of teenage girls, it is now acknowledged that they are serious medical problems which affect physical and mental health, and can even be life-threatening.
Also, such individuals may concern about their body weight or body shape too much. Teenagers and young adults frequently have disorders of this kind; however, they can also develop in childhood or later. The most common eating disorders are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge-eating disorder, and the like.
There are many underlying causes that result in eating disorders and the most important causes include genetic factors, family influences as well as the role of the mass media. The treatment of eating disorders is based upon immediate management of the patient followed by pharmacological therapy and psychological and family counseling sessions.
People in the recent years place great importance on their weight and body shape which determine self-image for them. The physicians and health-care professionals in the contemporary world also emphasize the diminution of obesity and the control of eating disorders.
According to the report as adolescents gaze upon these images, many of them feel that their own image falls far below what is expected of them from society and the media. Eating disorders are “a group of serious conditions in which the individual is so preoccupied with food and weight that they can focus on little else.