Is Anorexia a Mental Health Disorder | Aster Springs Blog

Is Anorexia a Mental Health Disorder?

When the average person hears the term “anorexia nervosa,” they immediately think of it as an eating disorder and nothing else. People focus on the physical symptoms of the condition and not the underlying causes that affect how people think, behave, and interact with their nutrition regimens. Since anorexia has such a profound impact on a person’s mental state, does that mean anorexia is a mental health disorder?

Classifying Anorexia

The average person may have heard of anorexia nervosa, but how many know what this condition truly means? Anorexia remains one of the most prevalent eating disorders in the world, affecting countless around the globe at a given time. Anorexia involves restricting your food and caloric intake to have more control over your body image, usually in a quest to reach a specific target weight or body type.

This particular eating disorder can lead to a high mortality rate as people dealing with the condition restrict their nutrition regimen more and more, sometimes leading to starvation. When you seek eating disorder treatments, you want to ensure you’re treating the totality of the issue, not just some of the symptoms. While some people may imagine eating disorders occupy their own specific category, their effect on the person’s brain tells a different tale.

Anorexia and Mental Illness

Mental health disorders come in all shapes, sizes, and severity. They cover a wide range of people, behavior patterns, and disordered thinking that can have a significant negative impact on a person’s life. One of the commonalities between the different types is how they rewrite your brain chemistry and change how we think, feel, and emote. For people suffering from Anorexia, their thoughts surrounding food and their body weight have been altered and have a far-reaching impact on their mental health.

These people have issues with gaining weight, weight loss, and body image, but unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there. One of the most prominent symptoms of anorexia involves their thoughts and feelings about the amount of food they eat and its effects on their body. 

Symptoms That Drive Anorexia

Living in a society driven by the quest to look as thin, muscular, or aesthetically pleasing as possible can skew how someone views themselves. If someone decides to model their look after a celebrity or someone they admire, it can lead them to follow their popular nutrition regimen and workout routine to achieve the same results. If following those ideals doesn’t lead to the desired outcome, their goals can quickly spiral into an obsession that leads to an eating disorder like anorexia.

This obsession with reaching that ideal body type can quickly lead to low self-esteem, poor body image, and severely restricting the kind of foods you eat changes your brain chemistry. These alterations mean that this eating disorder has much in common with mental illness and can benefit from similar treatment options in the right environment.

How Psychotherapy Can Help Anorexia Treatments

The recovery process for any eating disorder is rarely a straight line. Some days will be better. Others will see you will experience some bumps in the road. An experienced eating disorder treatment center can help you take the necessary steps towards your recovery.

One of the most effective ways to combat anorexia comes in the form of psychotherapy. Talking with a professional in a safe and controlled setting allows you to take a step back and assess your situation as best you can. Aster Springs provides our patients the tools they need to learn more about their conditions, get to the root of their issues, and develop personalized treatment plans to help with their recovery. Find the location nearest you to learn more about the levels of care we provide and how we can help treat anorexia today.


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