Eating Disorders and Middle Age
Eating disorders like anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa are the bane of many people both men and women. These are cruel disorders which in the most extreme cases of anorexia can lead to death. This we all know, we also “know” that this tends to be an issue for the young, adolescents and young adults primarily. What we now know is that these conditions are growing at an alarming rate in the middle aged as well.
A recent study in the BMC Medical Journal claims that one in twenty eight women aged 40 to 50 have an active eating disorder. As startling as this is, the fact that less than three in ten ever seek treatment is a terrifying statistic. This lack of treatment anecdotally shows that there is a lack of understanding of these conditions by both the sufferer as well as those in place to treat and help these people.
It is far too easy to say that these conditions revolve around vanity and the body beautiful gone wrong. Very often these conditions are the result of difficult psychological traumas in the sufferers life. Abuse, divorce and death are common causative factors in these conditions. It is essential that all of us working with the emotionally and psychologically distressed get on the same page when it comes to identifying and working with sufferers of eating disorders no matter what their age.