Eating Disorders In Adolescents

1513 Words 7 Pages
Twenty million women and ten million men will suffer from an eating disorder at some point in their life (NEDA, 2015). Eating disorders are among the most common diseases in young adults and adolescents. Eating disorders are characterized by abnormal eating patterns, unusual fatigue, and weight changes. There are many types of eating disorders. The most commonly known and practiced eating disorder is anorexia nervosa, often referred to as anorexia for short. It is the third most common chronic illness among adolescents (ANAD, 2015). Over the years, anorexia has been the center of many studies. From these studies, we have learned more about the following: health risks and complications associated with anorexia, signs and symptoms commonly displayed, …show more content…
The most commonly know sign of anorexia is the refusal to eat. This can sometimes be hard to recognize since you are not with the person throughout their whole day. Individuals often make excuses saying that they are just picky about what food they eat, or they are not hungry because they have already eaten. However, not eating leads to extreme weight loss in the individual which is very noticeable. This is often how those with anorexia are identified. On top of their thin appearance, they also possess a bluish discoloration of the fingers, thin and brittle hair, and dry skin (Mayo Clinic, 2015). These are the main signs to look for when trying to determine if an individual is suffering from anorexia. They may also experience some emotional and behavioral problems. Those with anorexia often withdrawal themselves socially and begin to lack any emotion. This is due to the fact that they cannot concentrate on anything other than their weight. It is their obsession and therefore their only …show more content…
There are several small steps that can be taken. The first and most important step is to offer compassion and support. Individuals suffering from anorexia have a mental illness. It is not them being dramatic or wanting attention. It is a serious condition and they need others to be there for them to help them get over it. Another step to take is to set a good example for healthy eating, exercising, and body image. Doing this will show the individual that one can be successful without looking like the people we see on magazines or tv. Lastly, accept your limits. As a parent or a friend, there is not much to do without the individual realizing that they have a problem. Some individual may not see anorexia as an illness but rather a chosen lifestyle. The individual must first realize they have a problem. If not things will never change because they do not want to change. Although these steps may not seem like a lot, they are huge to those suffering with the disease. Every small step lets the individual know that someone does care and that it is a problem they need to

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