What are eating disorders?
Eating disorders are when a person has abnormal eating habits like eating too much food or not eating enough food. People with eating disorders also tend to have extreme concerns about their weight and body shape. The prevalence of eating disorders is about 9% for females, with males at a much lower rate. It typically affects female teenagers since they are more sensitive to comments about body weight/shape, peer pressure, and pressure to conform to societal standards of beauty.
Types of eating disorders?
There are two types of eating disorders: Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia.
- Anorexia Nervosa: Anorexia is seen more in females. They usually have low self-esteem and believe they are overweight no matter how thin they are. They have a continuous fear of weight gain and are usually high achievers or want to be perfect. This is typically seen in athletes and dancers. They tend to restrict eating food and/or exercise excessively. Although less common, they can also vomit after eating, abuse laxatives, or other diet medication.
- Bulimia. People with bulimia typically have normal body weight. They tend to worry about being overweight. They typically binge large amounts of food and have a sense of losing control. They have a high rate of purging after eating. They tend to use laxatives, diet medication, and/or exercise excessively.
What is the difference between anorexia nervosa and bulimia?
People with anorexia nervosa are typically underweight, while people with bulimia are often normal to overweight. The purging rate may also differ between anorexic and bulimic individuals, with less purging in anorexia and a higher rate in bulimia.
Are there any medical complications associated with eating disorders?
- Anorexia. People with anorexia can have medical complications.
- feeling tired
- poor sleep
- baby hair covering their body
- gets cold easily
- heart problem and lower heart rate
- seizure disorder
- lack of period in females
- bone loss
- death in some severe cases
- Bulimia. Medical complications from bulimia may include:
- tooth decay
- heart arrhythmia
- callus on knuckles
Any comorbidities associated with eating disorders?
Comorbidity with eating disorders are:
- Substance use
- History of trauma
Do insurance companies cover eating disorders?
Yes, most insurance plans cover eating disorders. The cost, however, will vary depending on what type of insurance plan you have, the severity of the disorder, and what state the insurance company is based in. If you would like to know more about how the Specialty Clinic of Austin can help you with eating disorders, please contact our office at 512-382-1933.