Nowadays, two of the most widespread mental illness affecting people particularly the young ones are eating disorder problems and alcohol addiction. These may be products of the severe alteration of lifestyle among the people nowadays or the influence of media. Also, traumas from the past could greatly add in the occurrence of these mental illnesses. As a basic unit of our society, our families can give 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 makes up 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 skinny and pale. Anorexics are likely 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 are anorexic intentionally miss out meals and almost eat nothing. They feel at fault when they eat. Even worse, just the mere action of thinking about food makes them guilty. They become obsessed of eating less or nothing. On the other hand, 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 insight of their body weight is distorted.
The reasons of eating disorder occurrence can be attributed to many factors. One important factor would be the potent influence of media. Media dictates the standards of society. Media materials create 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, records into their mind set and later on influences their behaviors. Moreover, peer pressure is also one likely cause of eating disorders, most especially among teenagers. We all always have the need to belong. It is during this stage 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 contribute 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 choose to doing unhealthy behaviors. Traumatic experiences such as being physically abused could greatly slow down one’s self-esteem. Lower self-esteem in turn makes the person to feel pessimistic towards the self- a very likely candidate for anorexia or bulimia.
Alcohol intake can also give anyone trauma for taking in excessively. 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 makes the human brain similar 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.
The idea of treating eating disorders and alcoholism is not as treating someone with a headache. These disorders involve breaking a sort of habit. For anorexics and bulimics, the fixation for weight loss and negative self regard should be eliminated. As for alcoholics, the habit of excessive drinking should be discontinued. How are these dealt with? Usually, treatment and rehabilitation centers supply medical and psychological treatment. Withdrawal symptoms are taken care of 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 treatment requires discipline which also needs in treating alcohol addiction.