Welcome to Mom Please Help

This blog is for all eating disorder sufferers, where they can get help and useful information. It is run by William Webster BA. For Karen Phillips.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Anorexia Side Effects

Anorexia is not just about weight loss and refusing to eat. Anorexia has major side effects on the mental, physical and emotional state of a person.

Contracting anorexia means getting a new life style, new coping strategies, new relationships, new thought pattern and a whole new way of living and none of it is good.

You can say that a new sufferer becomes like a completely new person, different from what she/he used to be.

One of the very distinctive side effects of anorexia is a distorted perception about themselves. It is related to their own body image, their self being and also how they perceive other people as well.

The main measurement of all becomes how skinny they are. Anorexics perceive that their worth is directly related to their weight. They feel and think the same way about other people also.

For example a 19 year old anorexic girl I was talking to said once:" I know that the more weight I lose the better and stronger person I become. I understand that all overweight people are lazy, fat and no good".

But the meaning of being overweight for her is far away from reality. She perceives even normal weight people as overweight, including herself. She was already only 49 kg (height 164cm) but she still saw herself like a fat and overweigh person.

She sees this picture because of the other major side effect of anorexia called "broken eye syndrome". And because anorexics see a wrong picture of themselves and others they want to loose more and more weight and can't stop starving themselves and over exercising.

Their relationships with other people change a lot since they contracted their anorexia because they need to spend all their time counting calories, exercising and thinking over a new strategy to lose more weight. Plus anorexics become very judgmental and picky and loose interest in others and everything they did before. All these prevent them from having a normal relationship with others.

And the other side effect of anorexia is their changing respond to everyday stress. This encompasses everything that happens to them, anorexics respond by increasing their exercising time, cutting down on calories and withdrawing further away from other people.