Bulimia is a very complicated disorder that can cause both physical and emotional problems. If you're the parent of a teen, it is important to know the signs of bulimia; in most cases, treatment is more effective when there is early intervention. Bulimia is not something that typically goes away on its own-- a teen suffering from bulimia will need to see a therapist or stay at a bulimia treatment facility. Some of the most common signs of bulimia in teens include the following.
Bulimia involves a cycle of binge eating and purging. It is a good idea to pay attention to how much food your teen is eating at meal times. People suffering from bulimia often eat very large portions of food when they are binge eating. If you notice that your teen is eating portions that are significantly larger than normal, it could be a red flag signifying a problem.
Frequently Visiting Restroom After Meals
After binge eating a large meal, it is not uncommon for a person suffering from bulimia to feel guilty, anxious, and out of control. One way that people with bulimia deal with their binge eating is by purging shortly afterward. This typically involves visiting the restroom and inducing vomiting shortly after eating. When teens frequently visit the restroom immediately after a meal, it could be due to bulimia.
Obsessive Concern Over Weight and Body Shape
It is not uncommon for teenagers to be concerned about their weight and how they look. However, teens suffering from bulimia can become obsessed with their weight and body shape. Listen to your teen when he or she is talking about themselves-- continually expressing concern about how their body looks and how much they weigh is very common with bulimia.
Excessive Exercise Routine
Since weight and body shape is something that consumes the mind of a person suffering from bulimia, a bulimic teen often begins excessively exercising in an attempt to achieve the weight and body shape that they hope to have. While exercise is important for a teen, you may want to be concerned if your teen spends hours a day working out or blows off school work or plans with friends and family to go to the gym.
Some people suffering from bulimia rely on both vomiting and laxative use to purge their body. Unless your teen has a medical condition and has been advised to use laxatives by a doctor, there really is no reason to use them. If you ever discover laxatives in your teen's bedroom or bathroom, it may be a sign that he or she is suffering from bulimia.
For more information, contact your local bulimia treatment facilities.