Aug 23

Diet Pill Addiction

Diet Pill Addiction

Diet pills are any type of “medication” or supplement that is marketed to control or reduce weight. There are numerous diet pills that have been produced and promoted for weight loss but only one is actually approved by the FDA for long term use. Diet pills always claim to achieve weight loss by increasing the metabolism, altering appetite levels, or interrupting the normal rate of absorption when it comes to fat and/or calories. The majority of diet pills can be purchased at pharmacies, over the counter without a prescription. This is especially dangerous because not only are the diet pills not approved by the FDA but they also can be bought by minors. Diet pills usually contain large amounts of addictive substances such as ephedrine, caffeine, or herbal stimulants which can have severe side effects. This is especially true if the individual taking the diet pills develops a diet pill addiction.

A diet pill addiction can develop at any time throughout an individual’s lifetime. This means that all age groups are vulnerable to a diet pill addiction. The statistics about diet pill addiction are helpful in realizing and understanding fully, the fragility of a diet pill addiction and how to improve the treatment of it.

  • A study from the University of Minnesota’s “Project EAT (Eating Among Teens) found that high school-aged females’ use of diet pills nearly doubled from 7.5 to 14.2 percent.  By the ages of 19 and 20, 20 percent of females surveyed used diet pills.
  • Abuse of diet pills by individuals with eating disorders is well-documented clinically, with prevalence estimates reported as high as 50%.
  • According to a study published in Eating Behaviors, individuals with eating disorders associated with vomiting and other purging behaviors are more likely to use diet pills.

What is the cause of a diet pill addiction?

Many things can cause a diet pill addiction. Typically a diet pill addiction begins with the want for a a temporary or quick fix for weight loss. Individuals who use diet pills under a doctor’s care with a prescription may have an actual need for the drug. However, when diet pills are just used recreationally or for non-medical purposes, it becomes a diet pill addiction. Men and women alike, who struggle with body image, even at a normal weight may feel inclined to use diet pills as a method of controlling their weight or losing weight. Body image dysmorphia or the inability to see one’s body clearly can be one of the biggest causes of a diet pill addiction. For example, someone who is suffering from anorexia nervosa is very likely to have a diet pill addiction. Feeling the necessity or want to take diet pills stem from deeper and underlying issues which are all usually connected.

Signs of a diet pill addiction

Certain signs and symptoms will be evident if you or a loved one is suffering with a diet pill addiction.  Diet pill effects can range in severity and can impact a man or woman physically, psychologically, and socially.

  • Chest pain
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Mood swings
  • Nausea
  • Tremors
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Stomach pain
  • Rapid respiratory rate
  • Severe headaches
  • Blurred vision
  • Vomiting
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Liver/Kidney damage
  • Chronic mood swings
  • Blackouts
  • Memory loss

Someone with a diet pill addiction may also deal with the side effects physically, psychologically, and socially. For instance, unstable weight, headaches, tightness in chest, heart palpitations, dizziness, stroke, and mood swings, depression, and low self-esteem as well as, increased isolation, difficulty maintaining healthy relationships, and avoidance of social encounters.

 

Aug 16

Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified

Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified

Eating disorders, specifically anorexia and bulimia, are characterized by extreme emotions, attitudes, and behaviors surrounding weight and food issues. They are serious disorders and can have life threatening consequences. This is also the case for the category of eating disorders known as eating disorders not otherwise specified (ENDOS). These eating disorders can include a combination of signs and symptoms that are pretty typical for someone who has anorexia or bulimia.

Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia Nervosa is characterized by emaciation, a never ending pursuit to try and be thin and a total unwillingness to stay at a healthy weight. There is also a distortion of body image and an intense fear of gaining weight. Anorexia Nervosa is also characterized by a lack of menstruation among girls and women. The eating behavior is extremely disturbed. Some people with anorexia will try to lose weight by dieting and exercising obsessively. Other people with anorexia will induce vomiting, misuse laxatives, diuretics, or enemas.

• Deliberate self-starvation with weight loss

• Intense, persistent fear of gaining weight

• Refusal to eat or highly restrictive eating

• Continuous dieting

• Excessive facial/body hair because of inadequate protein in the diet

• Compulsive exercise

• Abnormal weight loss

• Sensitivity to cold

• Absent or irregular menstruation

• Hair loss

Bulimia Nervosa

Someone with bulimia nervosa will have regular moments of overeating which are always followed by a feeling of guilt, which can then lead to extreme crash dieting, doing lots of exercise and purging (self-induced vomiting.)

  • Binge-eating “repeatedly” – eating much more than most people normally do, together with a feeling that they can’t stop or control their eating
  • Repeatedly and inappropriately compensating for the over-eating, such as over-medicating with laxatives, fasting, exercising to exhaustion, or making themselves vomit
  • Frequent dieting
  • Been doing these two things (binge-eating and inappropriately compensating) repeatedly at least twice a week for the last 3 months
  • Overly judging themselves in terms of the weight and shape of their bodies

Eating disorders not otherwise specified

These are the most common examples of eating disorders not otherwise specified but every person experiencing eating disorders not otherwise specified may have varying symptoms.

  • Menstruation is still happening despite meeting all the criteria for either bulimia nervosa or anorexia nervosa.
  • All conditions are present to qualify for anorexia nervosa except for the individual’s current weight is in the normal range or above.
  • Purging or other compensatory behaviors are not occurring at a frequency less than the strict criteria for bulimia nervosa
  • Purging without binging which is sometimes known as purging disorder
  • Chewing and spitting out large amounts of food but not swallowing

An eating disorder not otherwise specified is simply put an eating disorder that meets all the criteria except for one or two things. Mainly all of the above have one thing in common and that is an obsessive preoccupation with weight to the point that affects the present day moment and the ability to enjoy life while being around friends, family, at work etc. A person with ENDOS or any other eating disorder will constantly be concerned about their weight and food.