Saturday, October 12, 2019

Anorexia Nervosa Essay -- essays research papers

Anorexia nervosa is a life threatening eating disorder defined by a refusal to maintain fifteen percent of a normal body weight through self-starvation (NAMI 1). Ninety-five percent of anorexics are women between the ages of twelve and eighteen, however, â€Å"†¦in the past twenty years, this disorder has become a growing threat to high school and college students†(Maloney and Kranz 60). Anorexia produces a multitude of symptoms, and if not treated, anorexia can lead to permanent physical damage or death. Anorexic behavior is complex because it is all about the need for control. Someone suffering from anorexia has a distorted body image of himself or herself. He/she believes to be overweight, even though twenty percent of the time he/she is not (Yancey 59). The image of being overweight causes a low self-esteem. Symptoms of low self-esteem are loneliness, inadequacy in talents, a lack of trust in people and themselves, insecurity, identification with a specific peer group, and sadness. The media displays the ideal human body as thin and beautiful. Anorexic’s lives are full of confusion and lack of control. To the anorexic, to be thin is to be in control. The state of control to the anorexic is the ideal life without confusion and difficulties. In most cases, the anorexic is intelligent; popular among his/her peers, athletic, talented, and viewed as a role model to most people he/she comes in contact with. In reality, the issues in daily living are too difficult for the anorexic resulting in a lack of control in his/her life. The anorexic’s answer to a confusing life is to starve the body. The behavioral symptoms of the anorexia are counting calories, eating little food, baking treats for everyone and giving them away in hope of controlling not only the anorexic’s intake of his/her food, but also others. â€Å"Playing† with food at meal times is common behavior of the anorexic. When the meal is complete, the anorexic has disguised food intake by pushing the food around on the plate and hiding food in napkins. To dress in layers to hide the distinct weight loss and to avoid social activities where eating is involved are common behavioral symptoms. Behavioral symptoms of the anorexic can go unnoticed by most people. These symptoms are very secretive and oblivious to outsiders because the behavior is not out of the ordinary. Although the behavioral symptoms of the anore... ...cising, reading, and establishing new friendships are encouraged when the anorexic’s mood rises to an unhealthy level. Voluntary self-starvation, anorexia nervosa, is physically and psychologically dangerous. Loss of the body fat from the severe weight loss can impair the body by putting stress on the bones from lack of calcium. Dehydration can be deadly because the body needs the correct water balance, and without this proper balance, the kidneys can shut down. Malnutrition can lead to brain damage. Amenorrhea can cause infertility and put stress on tiny bones making them prone to breakage. Amenorrhea can also produce an interference of the reproductive hormone that protects the body against heart failure and osteoporosis. Severe depression in anorexics occurs from hopelessness and shame and can lead to suicide. Even though the behavioral, nutritional, cognitive, interpersonal, and psychotherapy treatment for anorexia is a long-term process, it is crucial to the anorexic person to receive treatment, or the physical consequences and psychological consequences can lead to permanent damage and sometime s death. Notable research on the treatment of the anorexic continues worldwide.

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