The contemporary nature of psychological disorders includes a diversity of issues, which tend to have a negative influence on human development. In fact, society became an element of human life, which can have a significant influence on human behavior. The current paper analyzes the nature of an eating disorder, which continues to evolve, namely anorexia nervosa. This issue worries the contemporary healthcare system and thousands of psychologists claiming of a need to pay attention to the mentioned widespread eating disorder. The current paper is a description of the eating disorder, which became a disease on the international level. The following discussion reveals the basic facts concerning this eating disorder, its causes, symptoms, and factors, its connection to brain and emotions, and some facts about treatment of the patient.
The primary target of the disorder is teenage girls willing to be in fashion and be an iconic example of being skinny. Millions of girls all over the world suffer from anorexia nervosa in the name of fashion. The disorder starts from diets and can have a destructive force on human body. The point when parents should worry is when a girl has an obvious preoccupation with being thin. Eating habits, lifestyle, thoughts, and behavior have a serious transformation and become the first signs of the disease. In fact, the desire to lose weight becomes the biggest wish of the girl suffering from the disorder. Anorexia threatens not only teenage girls but also men and women of all ages regardless of their occupation, social status, or lifestyle. The problem is that anorexia damages health and can even result in death of devastation (NEDA, n.d.). The most crucial issue of anorexia is that it is impossible to help the patient until he realizes that the significant eating disorder requires professional assistance. In addition, it is frequently impossible to persuade the victim of the disorder that the problem should have its solution as soon as possible. Thus, parents, friends or colleagues should always pay attention to the individual with first signs of the disorder. It is important to take actions immediately in order to prevent the development of the illness and extension of its negative impact on human body.
Symptoms, Causes and Factors
First, it is necessary to admit that the focus of anorexia is not food and weight but loneliness, a pressure to be perfect, or depression. However, the signs of anorexia are always identic, which require a special attention of the victim’s surrounding environment in order to identify the problem. The primary signs of anorexia are the following: strict and extreme diets, lying about eating, preoccupation with dieting, obsession with nutrition and calories, dramatic weight loss, feeling fat while being underweight, and others. In addition, an individual may start eating diet pills or use laxative to lose weight (Dryer, Tyson, & Kiernan, 2013). Compulsive exercises can also be a sign to the illness of the individual striving to be as thin as possible. In particular, all the symptoms are reasonable, and it is important to understand the nature of the disorder. Psychological causes of the disease focus on perfectionism of the individual. It may become a trigger to follow all possible diets in order to have a perfect body. Parameters of the perfect body stream from fashion, which dictates what to wear and how to look. Family pressures regarding the activity of the individual such as ballet or modeling may also be the triggers of eating disorder (Forsberg et al., 2015). Biological factors may also take place in the development of the anorexia. For example, if a girl has an elder sister or a brother suffering from anorexia, she is most likely to experience the same problem. In particular, the behavior of siblings motivates the younger one to copy the same lifestyle. In general, the diversity of factors influencing the development of the disorder comes from the social segment, which dictates the standards of human body. In addition, the aforementioned causes interact with the factors motivating an individual to follow an unhealthy way of eating. Such factors mainly stream from communication with peers, media, family pressure, or society itself.
Whereas the discussed disorder streams from the psychological aspects of human development, the connection of anorexia to brain and emotions of the individual will be evaluated. The following discussion is an explanation of other reasons, which should push others to help the victims of anorexia.
Connection to Brain and Emotions
It is impossible to find a psychological disorder, which will not have an impact on other areas of human body. Anorexia hits brain function and affects emotional background of the patient. First, it is necessary to evaluate the effect of the disorder on brain since it is the center of human activity and an engine of all processes. Brain stops functioning in appropriate way due to a lack of nutrition under the influence of the extreme dieting. There are no resources, which can help brain generate the energy. Consequently, an individual often faints, has changes in brain chemistry that results in the development of bad memory and difficulties in thinking principles. The patient cannot focus or think about anything else rather than diet. In addition, there is a fear of putting on weight, which dictates the behavior of the individual. Such changes cause the transformation of the emotional background, which is another proof that anorexia is a dangerous eating disorder. An individual is irritated and sad all the time because his mind is filled with the only idea of losing weight (Smith & Segal, 2015). If someone seeks to convince him/her that there is no need to lose weight or that he/she has problems with eating habits, it is most likely to meet anger and even rage of disagreement. The victim becomes unpredictable due to the extreme obsession with dieting and cannot control emotions or have a positive mood. Lack of nutrition does not give any energy to the thinking processes. Consequently, the patient cannot perform with high concentration. It is obvious that people from the surrounding environment of the individual should be the first ones to notice changes in his/her behavior.
It is obvious that it is necessary to start treatment if nothing else helps to improve the eating habit. There should be three sections, namely getting back to normal weight, inclusion of more food in the meal plan, and changes of thinking about food and anorexia. First, it is important to regulate a nutrition plan in order to provide the body with a normal amount of carbs, fats, and proteins. It is necessary for the launch of the healthy processes in human body, which will start the regulation of brain function. The next step is working on the psychological perception of the problem. If an individual does not see the negative effect of dieting, it is most likely that there will be no understanding of the situation (Raftis, 2010). It means that anorexia may evolve after several months or years of treatment. A psychologist should be the one helping the patient to go through the difficult process of treatment, which may generate denial and even anger in the patient. However, there is a need to engage all available resources in order to help the person to handle the disorder. Finally, the process of treatment should include help and support from the family and friends. The patient should feel that his previous lifestyle was threatening his health and life. Otherwise, there will be no result of treatment.
The discussed topic has a significant meaning in the issue of psychological disorders. Anorexia nervosa will continue to ruin the lives of millions of people if the society does not avoid the creation of human body standards. The humankind should accept each individual regardless of his/her weight. However, the contemporary fashion still has a long way to go in order to accept new standards of the body, which also underline the human beauty. If the person feels that his/her mind focuses on a single idea of losing weight, it is important to share this fact with the nearest environment as soon as possible. However, anorexia is a complex disorder, which prevents an individual from accepting the fact that there are problems with eating habits. In general, the society should be aware of the primary signs of anorexia in order to help immediately the ones who suffer from it.