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Adolescent Support Clinic
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"Supporting young people and families in Southend and Essex"

ASC Eating Disorders Service

“ a persistent disturbance of eating behaviour or behaviour intended to control weight, which significantly impairs physical health or psycho- social functioning.”

Fairburn

 

Our service provides specialist care for the full spectrum of disordered eating for Males & Females of all ages:

  • Anorexia Nervosa
  • Bulimia Nervosa
  • Binge Eating Disorder (BED)
  • Obesity
  • Atypical Eating Disorder

Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia is an intense and persistent desire to lose weight, or maintain a weight that is below the minimum expected for your age and height.

You may have an extreme fear of gaining weight and your view of your body may be markedly different from how your friends and family say they see you.

You feel that if you lose weight you will be happier and you may have begun skipping meals or hiding food. You might punish yourself if you eat a ‘bad’ food or don’t lose enough weight. You might have certain rituals or obsessive behaviours around food.

You might use Laxatives or exercise excessively.

Some Physical symptoms of Anorexia

  • Severe weight loss
  • tiredness
  • Dizziness
  • Feeling cold
  • Poor Concentration
  • Growth of downy hair all over your body (Lanugo)
  • Periods cease (amenorrhea)
  • Hair loss
  • Quick to anger and mood swings
  • perfectionism
  • reduction in social activity

Bulimia Nervosa

Bulimia is more common than Anorexia but often goes unnoticed for longer because you might remain at an average body weight.

With Bulimia you are trapped in a cycle of eating large amounts of food (often secretively and devoured at rapid speed) then make yourself sick (purge) afterward or severely restrict food intake for a few days to compensate.

You may also use laxatives and take excessive doses. You may feel out of control, guilt ridden and depressed.

Some Physical symptoms of Bulimia

  • Sore throat
  • mouth infections & dental problems
  • Irregular periods
  • Dry or poor skin
  • Poor sleep
  • Dehydration

Binge Eating Disorder (BED)

If you binge eat, you may eat large amounts of food in a short period of time . You may eat more rapidly than normal. You may feel compelled to eat until you are in pain or uncomfortably full only then can you feel satisfied.

You may eat large amounts even when you are not hungry and feel guilt or disgust.

Binge Eating can often (but not always) lead to Obesity

Obesity is a concern because of the long term health risks and association with medical conditions such as:

  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension (high blood Pressure)
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Respiratory dysfunction
  • Increased risk of certain cancers

Males and Eating Disorders

Symptoms are as those above though effects on the male reproductive system manifest at a more gradual rate –resulting in lowered sex drive due to reduced testosterone.

You might also exercise obsessively and though muscular you may be highly restrictive in your eating patterns and perhaps make use of anabolic steroids.

Atypical Eating Disorder

You might notice that some of the details listed above are familiar but you might not fit clearly into one diagnosis.

For example you may restrict but have regular periods. Your binges might be infrequent and you may only purge occasionally.

Eating Disorder is a complex presentation.

Whether you have a clear diagnosis or just some niggling concerns it is important that you address any worries early. Many of us use food in differing ways to cope with feelings that are difficult to express. Struggling in silence can leave you feeling even more unhappy and depressed.

We have specialist experience in working with Eating Disorders in both inpatient and outpatient settings.
We will support you alongside your GP or Medical Practitioner.

We can also direct you to nutritional advice from a registered Dietician if appropriate.

07765 390614

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