Having food on our tables indeed is a blessing as many out there do not have this facility and are deprived of clean food. But there are also certain situations where “Eating” itself is a trouble for many. Teens nowadays face many different issues as compared to their previous generations. Eating disorder is one of them.
Children these days, be it teens or younger children, all of them are somewhat choosy about what they feel like eating. Many of them even start skipping their meals too. These habits grow into serious and challenging behaviors which can later cause serious health problems for children and teens. It can be life-threatening too!. According to health providers, these behaviors typically develop during adolescence years or early adulthood.
If you feel like knowing the eating disorder in detail, keep reading.
The Types Of Food Disorders
Any eating disorder can be a threat to children because it can lead to severe health complications and can also cost them their lives.
The three main types of eating disorders are:
It is a condition in which a person has a fear of becoming fat so they do not eat the required calories. This fear can lead them to be underweight.
In this specific situation, a person tends to eat a lot and later purges the food by consuming laxatives, force vomiting to avoid weight gain.
- Binge eating
Binge eating disorder leads a person to gorge rapidly on food, but without force vomiting and purging.
These conditions vary from child to another child, some children usually experience the shifts between periods of anorexia and bulimia.
What Are The Causes Of These Disorders?
By far, the healthcare providers/ doctors have failed to find the cause of eating disorders. According to them, these conditions are usually caused by either biological, behavioral, or social factors.
For example, many young people are impressed and influenced by cultural or fictional images that do not present a realistic phase of life. Most of them have been body-shamed or bullied throughout their lives. Whereas some teens a combination of many struggles and mental issues.
Some of them are:
- Excessive distress
- The constant fear of becoming overweight
- Helpless feeling and zero fitness activity
- low self-esteem
- Classical conditioning or constant body shaming
The teens or children suffering from these issues tend to find their own ways to cope up with the situation. Many of them are not guided well and may adopt harmful eating habits. It can later go hand-in-hand with other psychological issues, such as these:
- Anxiety Issues
- Substance/Self Abuse
Teens and children that suffer from anorexia are already somewhat upset mentally as the fear of becoming fat has taken over their mind. They still see themselves as heavy and overweight.
If you fear your child is suffering from anorexia, these are the symptoms you should be looking out for:
- Self Critical
- Perfectionist in eating
- Anxiety and Depression related to food
- Dieting even being underweight
- Excessive workouts and Overexertion
- Irregular periods or no periods
- Avoiding meals
- Eating in secret
To treat anorexia, doctors usually try to convince people to get back to healthy eating naturally. If it doesn’t work, they’ll have to depend on the long-term psychological treatments.
- Medication focusing on eliminating depression
- Cognitive Behavioral therapy
- Suggestions for support groups
How Bulimia Can Be Treated
Just like the teens and children who have anorexia, people who are bulimic are also extremely unhappy with their bodies and fear gaining weight.
They are said to eat repeatedly and too much in a short amount of time but later, they keep blaming themselves because of the overeating. Furthermore, they have a constant feeling of disgust about their bodies. Consequently, they try to prevent the weight gain by induced vomiting through laxatives, diet pills, diuretics, or enemas.
After taking out the food, they feel satisfied and relaxed, the symptoms of bulimia are:
- Drug abuse
- Medication and laxatives to prevent weight gain
- Excessive Anxiety
- Binging on food and regretting later on
- Not eating in front of anyone
- Having unusual eating habits
- Excessive exercise
- Overemphasis, Disgust, and dissatisfaction about physical appearance
- Lack of interest in food
Psychologists and doctors usually work on breaking the binge-and-purge cycle through the following methods:
- Medications which are antidepressants
- Modification of the behavior of patients suffering from bulimia
- Psychotherapies individually and with the family
Ways To Deal With Binge Eating
Bulimia and binge eating are quite similar. The difference is that in binge eating a person tends to eat amounts of food in a short span of time. Sometimes, even to the point of discomfort. However, the people who binge eat do not feel to purge the food through vomiting. Consequently, they become overweight and obese.
The treatments used for this health condition are:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
Get Your Child Examined Through Marham
If you are a worried parent being either your child isn’t eating, eating too much, or is having unusual eating habits, do not wait a lot. These habits can get uncontrollably worse. Before you feel the situation is getting out of your hands, consult a psychologist as soon as you can.
To find the right doctor around you, take help from Marham.pk. Install Marham’s mobile app to book yourself an online consultation and talk to a doctor without leaving your house.
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Javeria Adil Chughtai
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