The Effects of Eating Disorders on the Mind

The effects of eating disorders on the mindThere is no doubt that eating disorders like anorexia, bulimia, compulsive overeating or over-exercising can lead to serious problems in the body. Many people are not aware of how seriously eating disorders impact the mind as well. Take a look at some of these effects that eating disorders can cause both mentally and neurologically.

Hormonal Changes Caused by Eating Disorders

Eating disorders typically starve the body of essential nutrients and lead to key changes. One effect of this is a change in hormones. Changes in hormones may eventually lead to the following:

  • Infertility
  • Bone loss
  • Thyroid changes
  • Increased stress hormones

These changes may also lead to depression, anxiety, mood swings, deeper self-esteem issues and mental health problems.

Neurological Effects of Eating Disorders

Other major changes to brain function caused by eating disorders may lead to confused or disordered thinking, strange nerve sensations and seizures that can be life threatening. Neurological changes may lead to permanent brain damage and mental health problems. These neurological changes may rewire the brain to have a more difficult time overcoming the eating disorder once a pattern of disordered eating is established. People with eating disorders often struggle with more headaches, nausea and dizziness than the average person.

Suicide and Depression with Eating Disorders

When your body is missing nutrients and your mind is riddled with self-doubt and anxiety, you are at a much higher risk for suicide and depression. Most eating disorders are based around chronic anxiety, trauma or emotional problems. It is important to seek treatment that helps both your mind and body recover.

Low Self-esteem and Eating Disorders

It is common knowledge that eating disorders stem from and lead to lower self-esteem. People who struggle with eating disorders often make cruel comments to themselves which can become a habit that is very hard to remove. They may feel that they do not deserve to feel happy, and these feelings often lead to deep depression or psychosis.

Eating Disorders and Control

In other cases, a person may get a false sense of control from an eating disorder. When a person has little control over his or her life, an eating disorder may make that person feel more in control. This false sense of control often leads to more intense eating problems over time which can eventually lead to death. People with eating disorders often feel a large amount of guilt. They may feel guilty for surviving a traumatic incident or for not meeting perfectionist goals. They may feel guilty for things that they have no control over.

Eating Disorders and Addiction

Eating disorders and addiction often go hand-in-hand. What often begins with amphetamine (speed) abuse to help lose weight often turns into a full-blown addiction before the person seeks help. Other addictions that act to numb pain or hunger are common among people with eating disorders.

Find Help for Eating Disorders and Mental Health Today

You don’t have to struggle with an eating disorder on your own. There is a wide network of people who are waiting to help you get through this situation. Whether you or someone you love is struggling with an eating disorder, we can get you the information and help you need. Call us any time, 24 hours a day, to learn more. All of our calls are toll free and completely confidential. Find out how we can help you now.