According to the charity Beat, approximately 1.25 million people in the UK have an eating disorder. Of those affected, between 11-25% are male, with numbers increasing each year of both sexes across a range of age groups. And, while individuals are more likely to be diagnosed during adolescence, there is evidence to suggest that this may be due to a lack of understanding and awareness of eating disorders in other age groups. Eating disorders can develop at any time in a person’s life, from childhood through to old age.
Ask someone to picture someone with an eating disorder, and the likely image that comes to mind is of a thin, young girl – however in reality cases are not always so typical. Despite common opinion, eating disorders exist not just in young women, but in men and women of all ages. The charity MGEDT (Men get eating disorders too) is dedicated to raising awareness of how men too can get eating disorders, and emphasize just how importance it is that professionals recognise this. At Dr Julian, we ensure that no one feels ashamed or embarrassed, no matter what their problem, and our service is 100% confidential.
The top eating disorders listed by the DSM are anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorder (BED) – where anorexia has the highest mortality rate of all mental health issues. In every case, eating disorders severely affect the quality of life of the sufferer and those that care for them, however often individuals suffer for several years before their disorder is recognised. Often this is the case because, despite common opinion, you cannot tell if someone has an eating disorder just by looking at them. While those with anorexia often show dramatic weight loss, it may be difficult to identify whether or not weight loss is healthy, or accompanied by an eating disorder. Further, with eating disorders such as BED, symptoms may include gaining or maintaining weight; therefore it is impossible to determine simply from one’s appearance if they are suffering or not.
If you, or someone else you know may be suffering with a complicated relationship with food, or self-esteem issues, speak to one of our therapists today or check out the symptoms using our SCOFF criteria. Remember, you are never alone, and you CAN beat this.
Source: Dr Julian Existing Website feed