Anorexia Nervosa (Purging Type)

Anorexia Nervosa (Purging Type)

The mortality rate for Anorexics in the (purging type) category is twice as high as those in the restricting category because people within this subtype are at an even greater risk for medical complications. This is because the purging behaviors (self-induced vomiting, laxative abuse, diuretic abuse) associated with this subtype can lead to serious physical consequences such as electrolyte imbalances, cardiac problems, and damage to the esophagus and teeth. Additionally, the malnutrition caused by restrictive eating can cause multiple organ failure and other health complications.

Anorexia nervosa (purging type) is a subtype of anorexia nervosa, a serious eating disorder characterized by extreme weight loss, a distorted body image, and an intense fear of gaining weight. The purging type is defined by the presence of self-induced vomiting or the misuse of laxatives, diuretics, or enemas, in addition to restrictive eating. People with anorexia nervosa (purging type) may have a distorted body image and a strong drive to be thin. They may have an intense fear of gaining weight, and may have an abnormal or distorted perception of their own body size or shape. They may also have a distorted view of their own worth and may base their self-worth on their ability to control their weight and shape.

Individuals with anorexia nervosa (purging type) may also be more likely to have co-occurring mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression, which can further complicate treatment and recovery. People within this subtype, anorexia nervosa (purging type)  tend to exhibit behavior that is more impulsive. Individuals with this subtype may engage in binge-eating and purging behavior, which is characterized by the consumption of large amounts of food followed by self-induced vomiting, laxative abuse, diuretic abuse, or excessive exercise. These behaviors are often impulsive and may be driven by feelings of distress or guilt.

Impulsivity is also seen in other areas of life, and people with anorexia nervosa (purging type) may be more likely to engage in risky behaviors, such as shoplifting, self injury, substance abuse or promiscuous behavior. They may also be more likely to experience mood swings and difficulty regulating emotions. There is a strong association between anorexia nervosa (purging type) and Borderline Personality Disorder. The “binges” in anorexia are usually different from the binges that will be later being discussed in the sections on Bulimia Nervosa and Binge Eating Disorder.  The difference is that the Anorexic person does not usually consume a significant amount of food or calories during these subjective binges.  A “true binge” is as least 1,000 calories.

Treatment for anorexia nervosa (purging type) is typically a combination of therapy, counseling, and in severe cases, hospitalization to address the physical effects of the disorder and help individuals develop healthy eating habits. Medications may also be used to help with related symptoms such as depression and anxiety.

It’s important to note that anorexia nervosa (purging type) is a serious disorder that can have severe medical and psychological consequences if left untreated. Early detection and intervention are essential for recovery.

You do not have to recover alone from Anorexia Nervosa (Purging type) alone. Help is available at The Center For Growth. We are located in Center City Philadelphia PA, Ocean City NJ, Mechanicsville VA and Santa Fe NM.  We also work virtually with clients living in Delaware, Georgia, and Florida