Learn More About Bulimia

By: mikeherman1
One of the most common eating disorders within our society today is bulimia, which also known as bulimia nervosa.

Bulimia is a eating disorder that is often thought of as being a disorder that is brought simply because of the desire to have a thin body, i.e. a body image problem,but few realize that it's actually a mental condition which is causing the sufferer to behave as they do.

It's much different than anorexia nervosa, which is another common eating disorder in which individuals decrease the amount of food that they eat and undergo over-exercise or the use of laxatives in order to get their body as thin as possible. Bulimics are also concerned with getting their body weight as low as possible, but they often over-indulge in eating food before 'purging' it.

Those with the disorder may engorge themselves with heavy amounts of food, with some bulimics consuming as much as twenty thousand calories in a meal. This is known as the 'binging' phase of bulimia, which is quickly followed by a purging phase. Individuals with bulimia 'purge' their body of the nutrition that the foods that they eat supply them with by a variety of methods, most commonly through inducing vomiting.

Other methods of purging include the use of laxatives or diuretics, and even enemas to remove food from the body. The disorder is caused by a poor self-image in many cases, and those with bulimia are never satisfied with the appearance of their body. Even when they are at the pinnacle of low body weight, they may continue to try to lose weight, drastically damaging their body within the process.

Those that express high levels of concern when it comes to the appearance of their body and low self esteem, with a constant fear of being seen as fat are most often afflicted with the disease. Some individuals exhibit no symptoms or signs of the disorder, but one method of identifying symptoms includes eating with the individual and noting if they go to the bathroom immediately afterwards.

Long-term bulimics may exhibit a dental problems such as tooth decay due to stomach acids eroding the enamel of the teeth, or problems with the throat. The glands of the neck and the face may appear to be swollen and a general sense of weakness may be present.

The problem is very common within society, with a full ten percent of college-aged girls affected by the disorder. While weight loss may occur during the disorder, the damage that it does to the body is drastic and often irreversible.

Dehydration is a common side-effect, and the dental health of an individual is often drastically altered. Stomach ulcers may develop, and after an extended period of time with the disorder, an irregular heartbeat may occur.

Bulimics also face an increased occurrence of suicidal behavior. If you know an individual that you suspect may be suffering from the disease, confront them with love and compassion.

Expect to be rejected, but suggest that they speak to a counselor or a doctor about the problem to see what they can do about overcoming it.
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