Warning Signs of Eating Disorders

Warning Signs of Eating Disorders

Recognizing when a loved has an eating disorder may not be as easy as you think. While a drastic weight loss or gain over a short period of time may be a more common and recognizable clue, it’s the more subtle signs that can tell you the entire story.

Anorexia Nervosa
As well documented as it is among eating disorders, no specific cause has ever been attributed to triggering anorexia nervosa and its accompanying obsession with thinness. While it most commonly affects adolescent females, males are also known to suffer its effects. Anorexic women also tend to be high achievers, and known for their pursuit of excellence. Other signs include:

• irritability or trouble dealing with other people
• obsession with food or developing food-related or eating rituals
• excessive exercise
• refusal to eat in public
• irregular menstrual cycle
• constipation
• always feeling cold

Bulimia Nervosa
While Anorexia sufferers tend to focus on less and less food, Bulimia victims will binge-eat excessive amounts of food, often only stopping when the pain becomes too much for them. Then they will purge their bodies through vomiting or using laxatives. They may also show signs of:

• low self-esteem
• gum damage and/or abnormal tooth decay
• going to the restroom immediately after meals
• sores on the knuckles or hands
• exaggerated focus on body shape and weight
• mouth or throat sores