What Is Bulimia Nervosa?
Bulimia nervosa is a serious mental health disorder that requires comprehensive treatment at a bulimia nervosa treatment center like Selah House.
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), the following symptoms are present in almost all diagnosed bulimia cases:
- Recurrent episodes of binge eating, characterized by eating large amounts of food in a short period
- A sense of loss of control overeating behaviors
- Use of inappropriate, compensatory behaviors, such as self-induced vomiting, laxative, or diuretic abuse, fasting, and obsessive exercise
- Binge eating and compensatory behaviors that occur at least once a week for three months
- Self-evaluation is inappropriately influenced by the person’s weight and shape
- The disturbance does not occur exclusively during episodes of anorexia nervosa
Overview of Bulimia Nervosa
Bulimia Types and Criteria
Purging Type: An individual suffering from the purging type regularly engages in self-induced vomiting or the misuse of laxatives, diuretics, or enemas.
Non-purging Type: An individual suffering from the non-purging type regularly uses inappropriate compensatory behaviors, such as fasting or excessive exercise without purging behaviors.
Bulimia Symptoms and Health Risks
- Excessive concern about weight
- Strict dieting followed by eating binges (diet – binge – purge cycles)
- Frequent overeating, especially when distressed
- Binging on high calorie, sweet foods
- Use of laxatives, diuretics, strict dieting, vigorous exercise, and/or vomiting to control weight
- Leaving for the bathroom after meals and excessive requirements for privacy in bedroom or bathroom
- Being secretive about food/binges/vomiting
- Feeling out of control
- Impulse control problems in other areas
- Swollen neck glands or frequent sore throat
- Unusual or frequent dental problems
- Repeated excuses for not eating at regular meals with family and friends
- Electrolyte imbalance
- Irregular heart rhythms