Bulimia and Anorexia Nervosa
As of 2016, eating disorders, including anorexia and bulimia, are still complicated, serious and potentially devastating for young adults. Our dentists in Plantation help people with Bulimia and Anorexia who may suffer from oral health problems as well. This is because many of the behaviors associated with anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa—such as binge eating, self-induced vomiting, and use of diuretics or laxatives—cause changes in the mouth.
For example, repeated episodes of vomiting, which is common in people with bulimia, release harmful stomach acids that pass through the mouth and can erode tooth enamel causing cavities, gingivitis, discoloration and tooth loss. Other problems, such as poorly fitting fillings and braces, are another byproduct of such eating disorders.
Brushing after episodic vomiting is actually more harmful than one would think. The best practice is to rinse thoroughly with a neutral solution such as baking soda and water.
Bulimia nervosa, commonly called bulimia, is a serious, potentially life-threatening eating disorder. People with bulimia may secretly binge — eating large amounts of food — and then purge, trying to get rid of the extra calories in an unhealthy way. For example, someone with bulimia may force vomiting or engage in excessive exercise. Sometimes people purge after eating only a small snack or a normal-size meal.
Bulimia is an eating disorder that occurs chiefly in females in which a large quantity of food is consumed in a short period of time, often followed by feelings of guilt, shame or depression.
Anorexia Nervosa, commonly called Anorexia, is an eating disorder that makes people lose more weight than is considered healthy for their age and height.
Persons with this eating disorder may have an extreme fear of weight gain, even when they are underweight. They may diet or exercise too much or use other ways to lose weight.
Many people with anorexia see themselves as overweight even though they are underweight. If people with Anorexia Nervosa were asked, they usually deny they have a problem with low weight. Often time they weigh themselves frequently, eat only small amounts, and only eat certain foods.
Binge eating disorder is a serious eating disorder in which people frequently consume unusually large amounts of food and feel unable to stop eating.
Almost everyone overeats on occasion, such as having seconds or thirds of a holiday meal. But for some people, excessive overeating that feels out of control and becomes a regular occurrence crosses the line to binge-eating disorder.
When people have binge-eating disorder, they may be embarrassed about overeating and vow to stop. But they feel such a compulsion that they can't resist the urges and continue binge eating. If they have binge-eating disorder, treatment can help.
They can overcome that out-of-control feeling with treatment. Talking with a specialist like a psychiatrist or psychologist who treats people with Binging Eating Disorder may help. For some people, taking medication also helps.
It also helps to have emotional support from family members and close friends. Their support makes it easier to change the way they think about food.
The physical signs and symptoms of anorexia nervosa are related to starvation. The symptoms of Anorexia also includes emotional and behavior conditions related to an unrealistic perception of body weight and an intense fear of gaining weight or becoming fat.
Common symptoms of anorexia include:
- Restricting food in general or types of food that contains any kind of fat or sugar.
- Having an extreme fear of gaining weight.
- Weighing much less than is normal or expected for their age, gender, stage of development, or physical health.
- Seeing their body as overweight, even when they are not underweight.
- Being secretive around food and not recognizing or wanting to talk about having a problem with eating or weight loss.
- A constant desire of exercising too much.
Bulimia Nervosa Symptoms
Bulimia symptoms can be hard to diagnose because people often keep unhealthy thoughts and behaviors secret and may deny that they have a problem. Often a person won't get evaluation and treatment until someone else notices the symptoms of bulimia and encourages the person to seek the help that he or she needs.
Bulimia signs and symptoms may include:
- Living in fear of gaining weight
- Worry with your body shape and weight
- Feeling that you can't control your eating habits
- Continue eating until the point of discomfort or pain
- Eating much more food in a binge episode than in a normal meal or snack
- Forcing yourself to vomit or exercise too much to keep from gaining weight after bingeing
- Misusing laxatives, diuretics or enemas after eating
- Restricting calories or avoiding certain foods between binges
- Using dietary supplements or herbal products excessively for weight loss