Anorexia – Personality Traits That Define Anorexics
Anorexia is a devastating illness that affects thousands of people in the United States. This condition is caused by several factors, including social, environmental, and genetic factors. However, treatment can be successful and recovery is possible.
Until recently, the role of genetics in anorexia nervosa was relatively unexplored. Studies of twins and families suggest that the disorder has a genetic component, but that genetic variation is likely due to other factors as well.
The genetics of anorexia nervosa may be linked to the nervous and metabolic systems. One study found that people with the disorder tend to have a low body mass index (BMI) and are more likely to consume fewer calories. These findings support the theory that anorexia nervosa is a metabolic disorder.
Another study found that people with the disorder tend to exhibit certain personality traits such as perfectionism and anxiety. These traits can be present in the years before the onset of the disorder.
Anorexia nervosa is very common in families, with more than half of the people with the disorder having at least one genetic factor. A large study of nearly 17,000 patients found eight genomic locations associated with anorexia. These include genes that code for proteins involved in the nervous system and metabolism.
Researchers also identified genes that were involved in the serotonin system and noradrenaline systems. These are proteins that regulate mood and appetite. Several other genes that code for components of the opiate and dopamine systems were assessed for their role in anorexia nervosa.
Researchers have found that a person’s risk for anorexia nervosa increases if there is a first-degree relative who has the disorder. Those who have a first-degree relative with the disorder are about 10 times more likely to develop the disorder than those who do not.
Unlike other psychiatric disorders, the onset of anorexia is not the result of a single cause, but rather a complex combination of genetic, environmental, and psychological factors. Symptoms can be experienced by individuals of any size, gender, and ethnicity.
Environmental factors include social, societal, and psychological factors. Among these, a number of studies suggest that peer pressure and cultural norms are the biggest environmental contributors to anorexia.
Other factors that have been shown to increase the risk of developing anorexia are stress, ill health, and childhood trauma. In addition, exposure to the media has also been linked to faulty body image. In fact, anorexia nervosa is a symptom of an autism spectrum disorder.
One of the most important factors affecting anorexia is the onset of a disorder in a family. The risk of developing anorexia in a family is 10 times that of a population without a history of the disease. In addition, people with a family history of anorexia are also more likely to have an eating disorder. Moreover, individuals with a family history of anorexia nervosa are more likely to die at an early age than individuals without a family history of the disease.
Several studies have found that there are several potential genetically transmissible factors that can increase the risk of developing anorexia. This includes a genetic disposition for low self-esteem. Other factors include childhood abuse and a strong desire to fit in.
Various social factors have been associated with the development of anorexia nervosa. A recent study showed that the Westernized world had higher rates of disease than the rest of the world. Some studies indicate that this is due to the growing pressures on women to appear thin and slender in order to fit into modern Western society.
One of the most important social factors that contribute to the development of anorexia is the absence of a social network. People with anorexia nervosa tend to report lower social support, fewer social activities, and fewer friends than those with normal weight.
Other factors include body image and the media’s promotion of a certain physical aesthetic. While these factors are important, they are not the only factors that determine the development of anorexia. The prevalence of the disease is higher in girls than in men. It is also more prevalent in minority communities.
The best way to explain anorexia varies from person to person. Some anorexics exhibit obsessive-compulsive personality traits such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). They may set unrealistic standards for themselves, have an unhealthy fear of weight gain, and have excessive body image concentration. The best way to combat the condition is to educate the public about the disease, including its signs and symptoms. Those at risk for the disorder will be more likely to get help.
A study by the National Eating Disorder Association found that many anorexics experienced a certain level of inflexibility as a child. This included poor social skills, such as the inability to assert themselves.
Identifying the traits that define anorexics may help you better understand and diagnose the disorder. While it’s impossible to fully understand a person’s mental makeup, some characteristics are more common than others. The following are some of the most commonly found personality traits in patients with anorexia nervosa.
Perfectionism is a major feature of anorexia nervosa. Perfectionism is defined as the tendency to place self-worth on achievement, rather than on appearance. Perfectionism may be a useful trait, but it’s also one that can be detrimental. If perfectionism is a trait you’ve found yourself struggling with, the best approach may be to identify what’s causing it and then find strategies to deal with it.
The need to have control is also a big component of anorexia nervosa. People with this disorder often try to restrict food in order to reduce their anxiety. It’s also common to see patients exhibiting a variety of obsessive-compulsive behaviors, such as excessive worrying, binge eating, or purging. These behaviors are merely symptoms of the disease, but they can lead to more serious health consequences.
The best way to identify these traits is to look at the patient’s lifestyle and family history. Eating disorders often co-occur with other mental health issues and may be a result of growing social pressures. In addition, the patient must learn coping skills, such as how to deal with frustration and how to control their emotions.
During nutritional rehabilitation, patients with anorexia nervosa are at risk of developing the refeeding syndrome. This is a potentially life-threatening condition that occurs when a malnourished patient uses carbohydrates as the primary energy source. It can result in a number of serious medical complications, including cardiac failure, coma, and Wernicke’s encephalopathy.
Refeeding syndrome was first reported in the late 1940s. It is considered to be caused by rapid increases in insulin. It can also lead to deficiencies in potassium and magnesium. It can also lead to rhabdomyolysis, which can result in death.
The initial goal of refeeding is to restore physiological stability by reintroducing nutrition. This leads to a transition from fat metabolism to carbohydrate metabolism. The reintroduction of nutrition also leads to an increase in insulin concentration. These changes can take weeks to fully normalize.
The American Psychiatric Association recommends a conservative approach to nutritional rehabilitation. This may include a low-calorie diet to prevent complications. However, low-calorie diets have been linked to poor weight gain and may not be sufficient for weight restoration.
Higher calorie refeeding has been suggested as an effective way to restore biochemical stability in severely malnourished patients. However, it has been linked to a prolonged hospital stay.
A 2015 study looked at 461 admissions to refeeding centers. It included severely malnourished adolescents and adults with BMIs of 15 kg/m2 or less. They found that patients were not at increased risk for refeeding syndrome when the calorie level was less than 1500 kcal/day.
Depending on the individual’s needs, treatment for anorexia can be varied. Treatment may involve a combination of medical, psychological, and nutritional therapy. Some people require hospitalization.
The treatment of anorexia depends on the patient’s age, the extent of the illness, and the stage of recovery. Treatment is designed to help anorexics return to a healthy weight. The treatment may also address underlying issues, such as depression and substance abuse.
During anorexia treatment, a medical team may include a psychiatrist or other mental health professionals. Some doctors will also use diagnostic tests to determine if a patient’s weight loss is due to physical illness. These tests can help evaluate the effects of weight loss on organs.
A medical team may also recommend medication, such as antidepressants, to help treat anorexia symptoms. These medications can also help treat symptoms of depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder. They can also help prevent relapse.
Another common form of treatment is Intensive Outpatient Treatment (IOP). IOP programs are flexible and can be cost-effective. These programs are a good option for people who cannot afford to take time off work.
Anorexia may also be treated with medications, such as Seroquel, Zyprexa, and Bupropion. Depending on the patient’s weight loss, they may need to be fed through an IV.
Another popular treatment for anorexia is cognitive behavioral therapy. CBT focuses on changing thinking patterns and beliefs. During CBT, patients learn about their thoughts and behaviors related to food and their body.
Health A to Z. (n.d.). HSE.ie. https://www2.hse.ie/az/
U.S. National Library of Medicine. (n.d.). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/
Directory Health Topics. (n.d.). https://www.healthline.com/directory/topics
Health A-Z. (2022, April 26). Verywell Health. https://www.verywellhealth.com/health-a-z-4014770
Harvard Health. (2015, November 17). Health A to Z. https://www.health.harvard.edu/health-a-to-z
Health Conditions A-Z Sitemap. (n.d.). EverydayHealth.com. https://www.everydayhealth.com/conditions/