, Spain (PressExposure) October 25, 2007 -- The good news: anorexia and bulimia sufferers can, and do, get well however the number of people in the world suffering with eating disorders continues to grow; no one is really sure just what causes them, although there are many theories. An eating disorder tends to develop in late teens and many believe it could be connected with the physical and emotional changes that go along with puberty.
Some individuals who develop eating disorders can also be depressed or anxious. Experts also think that many may have obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). There is also evidence that eating disorders may run in families.
Whatever the cause, the effects can be damaging, devastating and occasionally life threatening. People who weigh at least 15% less than the normal weight for their height may not have enough body fat to keep their organs and other body parts healthy.
A person with anorexia can do damage to the heart, liver, and kidneys by not eating enough. The body slows everything down as if it were starving, causing a drop in blood pressure, pulse, and breathing rate. (For girls, this starvation mode may mean they stop getting their periods.)
People with bulimia often have constant stomach pain. Like girls with anorexia, girls with bulimia may stop getting their periods. And, most dangerous of all, the constant purging can lead to a loss of the mineral potassium, which can contribute to heart problems and even death.
Additionally there is the emotional pain inflicted on those suffering with an eating disorder, which often has a devastating effect on their families and close friends.
Treatment for Eating Disorders Fortunately, people with eating disorders can and do get well, often returning to strong, confidant and healthy individuals relatively quickly. Because anorexia and bulimia involve the mind and body, the treatment offered in Spain which incorporates CBT, hypnotherapy and NLP should only be undertaken after consultation with a doctor or medical practitioner.
With anorexia and bulimia one important factor is how quickly the disorder is recognized and addressed, â like all bad habits, unhealthy eating patterns become harder to break the longer a person takes part in them.
A small British clinic in Southern Spain is rapidly acquiring a reputation for its success in treating individuals suffering with anorexia and bulimia. There CBT based approach is highly focused and designed to ensure that they always treat the cause rather than the symptom of the problem: this may sound like a generalization, but it is often a common mistake made in treatment. People are not born with an eating disorder; something has happened in their lives at one level or another that has played a major role in its establishment. Often, once the cause is uncovered and understood, the improvement in the client can be dramatic. Where appropriate the clinic involves dieticians and nutritionists in the treatment plan.
The basis of psychological treatment is in forming a trusting relationship with the therapist and addressing pertinent issues to the person such as the thoughts, feelings and behaviours that lead to the development and maintenance of the eating disorder. This may include issues with anxiety, depression, poor self-esteem and self-confidence, difficulties with interpersonal relationships.
CBT has become a popular form of treatment for people experiencing eating disorders. Based on the premise that thoughts and feelings are inter-dependent, CBT encourages people to re-examine and challenge existing thought and behaviour patterns. Challenging distorted or unhelpful ways of thinking can allow healthier behaviours to emerge.
So how can you tell if a person has anorexia or bulimia? You can't only tell by looking, of course â someone who loses a lot of weight may have another health condition. But if you or a friend fits the patterns described below, you should seek help.
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