Eating disorders and alcohol addiction are two of the most common mental illness affecting many people, especially the young, today. These may be products of the drastic change of lifestyle among the people nowadays or the influence of media. Also, traumatic experiences from the long-ago could greatly add in the occurrence of these mental illnesses. The family, being the basic unit of society, all the more has the greatest impact on both the occurrence and the possible treatment of these problems.
A distortion of one’s self-image is the main reason why a person resorts to eating disorders. You can actually partially forget eating habits and food intake. This comprises a negative mind set towards one’s physical appearance. People with eating disorders are not |essentially fat. Usually for people with anorexia, the patients are thin and pale. Anorexics tend to think that they are very plump that they should exercise more and eat lesser, even though in reality they tend to be very thin to the point of becoming malnourished. People who have anorexia intentionally miss out meals and almost eat nothing. They feel guilty when they eat. Even worse, just the mere action of thinking about food makes them faulty. They become obsessed of eating less or nothing. On the contrary, another eating disorder called bulimia entails binge eating. Habitual binge eating and forceful vomiting characterize bulimia. Usually, bulimic are not skinny rather, that could be normal in weight only their view of their body weight is distorted.
Various factors could contribute to the occurrence of eating disorders. One primary factor would be the powerful influence of media. Media dictates the standards of society. Media materials produce a picture of a beautiful woman through a skinny model and a hot and handsome guy through a male model with full abs and biceps. Undeniably, people watch T.V. more than they do their household chores. It may be an overstatement but the point is people watch television almost everyday. Thus, what media shows, psychologically, registers into their mind set and later on affects their behaviors. Moreover, peer pressure is also one possible cause of eating disorders, most especially among teenagers. We all always have the need to belong. It is during this phase that young boys and girls are still in the route of knowing their selves and trying to find their place in society. And the people that surround them matters so much that most likely, they end up giving efforts to be accepted. Lastly, traumatic experiences during the past may add to the occurrence of an eating disorder. People, when they are in a very stressful episode which they feel they could no longer face, usually opt to doing unhealthy behaviors. Traumatic experiences such as being sexually abused could greatly lessen one’s self-esteem. Lower self-esteem in turn makes the person to feel negatively towards the self- a very likely candidate for anorexia or bulimia.
Another resort for traumatic experiences is excessive and unhealthy alcohol intake. With alcohol addiction, a glass of wine a week becomes a glass of wine a day or worse. Alcohol is a sedative-hypnotic drug that acts on the human brain akin to other sedative-hypnotic drugs such as the barbiturates and benzodiazepine tranquilizers. Alcoholism can be blame on one’s heredity but there can be more reasons. Other factors such as the influence of family, friends, and traumatic experiences could contribute to alcoholism.
Treating both eating disorders and alcoholism is not as easy as treating someone with cough or colds. These disorders need breaking a sort of habit. For anorexics and bulimics, the obsession for weight loss and negative self regard should be eradicated. As for alcoholics, the habit of excessive drinking should be discontinued. How are these dealt with? Usually, treatment and rehabilitation centers give medical and psychological treatment. Withdrawal symptoms are handled by providing substitute drugs that would decrease the symptoms. Cognitive and behavioral therapies are also given for a full recovery. The patient should not only be able to end the behavior but also should be able to stop the negative thoughts and the distorted mind constructs. Here, the patient is given a possibility to start a new life free from addiction and very low self-esteem.
Eating disorder and alcohol addiction are great problems that needs very good treatment.