Though anorexia and bulimia are the eating disorders that most people know, there is another that often goes untreated. While anorexics and bulimics starve themselves and purge their meals, there are individuals who struggle with binge eating disorder. They are often caught in the vicious cycle of binge eating and depression, making the drive to overeating a difficult problem to overcome. But Brookhaven can identify the needs of these individuals and give them a plan that leads to healthier eating habits.
Binge Eating Disorder, or BED, is often used as a coping mechanism to deal with uncomfortable feelings. Some people speak of using the binging episodes as a method of numbing all that is going on around them emotionally. The amount and duration of food eaten can vary greatly for a person struggling with Binge Eating Disorder, but damage is done both physically and mentally.
Binge Eating Disorder may temporarily relieve the stress of certain unwanted feelings (such as stress, anxiety or other challenging emotions), but for the individual, these binging episodes are often followed by intense and overwhelming feelings of guilt, shame, disgust and further depression. For people grappling with BED, episodes usually occur in secret – much like a bulimic’s binge – and any evidence is often hidden from others.
Similar to people with anorexia and bulimia, individuals with BED are constantly struggling and unhappy with their weight and self-image. Often the number they read on the scale will determine how they feel about themselves. Constant dieting and the strict restriction of food becomes a way of life. In most cases, each diet ends in failure and any lost weight is quickly regained, throwing the individual into a devastating cycle.
Binge Eating Disorder (BED) is a disease and cannot be cured with willpower alone. If left untreated, BED can be fatal. If you or someone you know suffers from BED, contact Brookhaven Hospital today at 888-298-4673.
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