Anorexia vs. Bulimia
Many people in today’s society are affected by eating disorders and their deadly side effects. Two of the most common eating disorders, anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa, are often confused with each other because they each share many of the same qualities; however, each disorder has its own distinct behaviors that make it quite different from the other. Because each disorder is serious and can be deadly, it is important for people to understand each one individually in order to be able to distinguish between the two.
Anorexia is a psychological disorder consisting of the refusal to maintain body weight at or above a minimally normal weight for one’s age and height. People with anorexia often have an intense fear of gaining weight or becoming fat even though they are underweight. Anorexia is diagnosed when there is an absence of at least three consecutive menstrual cycles. Its onset begins in mid-adolescence when diagnosed weight is considerably decreased. Binge-eating is a symptom present for nearly half of all anorexics. The mortality rate of those with anorexia is around five percent within ten years without treatment. Cardiovascular changes like decreased heart rate and decreased blood pressure are more prevalent with anorexics than with bulimics. The most effective method in anorexia treatment is family therapy in which the family members are consulted by the psychiatrist along with the patient.
Bulimia is a psychological disorder consisting of serious overeating followed by a sense of guilt. With bulimia, there are recurrent episodes of binge-eating, which is eating an abnormally large amount of food in a discrete and short period of time. Bulimia usually starts in late adolescence or adulthood. A person with bulimia will usually have a normal weight. Binge-eating is present in one hundred percent of all bulimics. It is typical for bulimics to have antisocial behaviors. Cardiovascular changes, skin changes,...