The medical name of Bulimia is bulimia nervosa. This is an eating disorder. In this, people over eat and afterwards they have a feeling of guilt, and then they try to compensate the eating. It means they induce vomiting, use laxatives, enemas, diuretics, over exercising or fasting.
People suffering from this disorder eat abnormally and only stop eating when the other person stops them from eating or when there is severe feeling of stretching in the stomach due to overextension. These cycles are repeated many times in a week or in very severe cases many times in a day.
The disorder is more prevalent in women than in men and is seen commonly in adolescent girls.
This disorder can cause these diseases:
- Because of repeated vomiting, chronic gastric reflux after eating, esophagitis, erosion of tooth enamel by gastric acids and severe caries /cavities (because there is lowering of pH of mouth due to reflux of gastric acid during vomiting, which increases the susceptibility of teeth to demineralization) may develop over the time.
- Tearing or rupture of the esophageal wall (due to repeated vomiting force), Oral trauma (due to insertion of fingers), swelling of salivary glands, mouth ulceration may be seen in these patients.
- Due to repeated vomiting, electrolyte imbalance, dehydration and hypokalemia may occur. Electrolyte imbalance may lead to cardiac arrhythmia, cardiac arrest, and even death.
- Pancreatitis and peptic ulcers may be seen in these patients.
- Keeping overeating habits a secret
- Over activity
- Frequent weighing
- Feeling of overachievement
Bulimia can be caused due to psychological issues. In most of the cases patient has a feeling that they do not have any control on their lives. The causes may be:
- Society, or Cultural
They feel that the destructive eating habits may help them in getting a control over their life. The consumption can be as high as 20,000 calories. They tend to overeat when they are stressed. It is seen in acts where slimness of body is required.
- Attempts to relieve stress
- Prevent addiction
- Be careful about the overall behavior
- Control the craze for a certain profession
- Do not skip meals
- Control over eating
- Accept yourself the way you are
- Talk about the problems
- Join support groups
- Keep patience