What does your daughter need from you in order to get well from anorexia? She needs you to learn the strategies ED will use to get you and her off track when you sit down to the table. One tactic ED uses is he is always looking for a loophole. Wikipedia defines a loophole as "a weakness or exception that allows a system to be circumvented or otherwise avoided." One example of a loophole could be a breach in a security system. A thief spends time observing a house and learning a person's routine in order to find an area of weakness that he can exploit. The eating disorder is similar in that he also is very observant. ED sees where the weaknesses are as you work toward restoring your child's weight.
Stomach bacteria is not a subject that we like to talk about much, yet such subjects are of much more importance than many realise. In fact, bacteria, or germs, that cause stomach ulcers and and are also responsible for a large proportion of gastric cancers. These could also be giving us bad breath. For the first time, scientists have found Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) living in the mouths of people who are not showing any signs of stomach disease. Bacteria are divided into two main categories - good bacteria and bad bacteria; the harmful bacteria are known as pathogenic bacteria. They compete with the good bacteria both for living space and for food.
The simplest definition of family dynamics is it is the way family members relate to each other. When your child develops anorexia it impacts the whole family and anorexia actually changes or intensifies family roles. Let's say you're anorexic child has a younger sibling. This sibling has had a predictable relationship with you. He is used to being the center of attention because he is the baby in the family. The anorexia comes along and he is dethroned and is now taking a back seat to his ill sister. For example: You are all sitting at the table trying to get your daughter to eat more. The younger sibling puts up with this for part of the meal; but by the end he is running circles around the table and pestering the other kids.
In Part One I defined family dynamics as ways in which family members relate to each other. These relationships are often altered when you have a child with an eating disorder. Issues may even intensify between family members. Let me give you an example of this. Perhaps you're anorexic child has an older sibling. This sibling has had a conflicted relationship with you. He is often non-compliant, ignoring his curfew and verbally abusive at times. The anorexia comes along and his issues may either intensify or get put on the back burner due to his ill sister. At mealtime you are interacting with your daughter and attempting to get her to increase her calories.
When you are re-feeding your child at home sometimes you feel like you are walking on egg shells. The reason for this is when you require your daughter to eat you are actually provoking the eating disorder (ED). He reacts and you see angry emotion and behavior from your daughter. One of the most important aspects of being able to help your child is to separate her from the eating disorder. There is a healthy, whole, non-eating disordered child being held captive by ED. The daughter you once knew is in there somewhere; but she is being drowned out by the voice, thoughts, feelings and behaviors of ED. She is being bullied but not by some kid at school or someone outside herself.
When your child is diagnosed with an eating disorder your life gets turned upside down. Your relationship with your spouse changes in ways you never could have imagined. How does your relationship with your spouse change? We all know that with each child you have, there is less time and energy for your spouse. What about when one of your children develops anorexia? For one thing you are both thrown into circumstances that you have no idea how to deal with. You both may have opinions about how this happened, how serious it is, and what you should do about it if anything. An eating disorder can divide parents almost quicker than a physician can say the words.
Even as I wrote this article title I had the thought, "Oh my gosh, that sounds so mean." Here your child is crying and begging to not eat any more and you continue to stand firm on what you expect her to eat. Some would say this is mean and cruel. I've come to believe it is the exact opposite. It is saving your child's life. Why have I come to believe that this is not cruel and mean? Because I have seen girls' weight restored and families come together against all odds to help her get better. Does this work for everyone? Of course not; no one treatment works for everyone. Every child and family is different. Each family brings its own strengths and challenges to the table.
It is very common for a parent or family member to have difficulty accepting that a person they love is ill. They have a lot of questions and concerns to work through. One reason might be that like with the diagnosis of any serious illness, denial is often the first reaction. It is our mind's way of protecting ourselves from overload and the pain of intolerable emotion and information. We don't want to face the fear of what this may mean for our loved one. "Could she really die? How could I not have known this or seen it coming? Surely there must be some mistake or someone is over-reacting. It can't be true." After the initial thoughts and feelings about your child, the next thoughts may be for yourself.
When someone in your family is diagnosed with anorexia it can feel like you are all held hostage to the eating disorder. Everything starts to revolve around your ED child, food, and getting her to eat. Often, however, this laser like attention is not a productive kind of focus. One of the things I love about the Maudsley Approach is the ED is discussed openly with every family member present. Each family member gets educated about what is about to happen. It doesn't mean there are not age-appropriate considerations; but for the most part all are on an equal playing field as far as education is concerned. The other aspect of the Maudsley Approach I like is every family member has a role to play.
Loss of appetite is a very common disorder these days. Anorexia is the medical term used for loss of appetite. This disorder is most commonly caused due to unhealthy lifestyle and faulty eating habits. A person suffering from this disorder must concentrate on lifestyle and eating habits which may be the cause for loss of appetite. Also, loss of appetite remedies is quite effective and may help in the anorexia treatment. There are some physical and psychological causes due to which a person may lose appetite. Physical causes may include faulty eating habits, usage of certain medications and unhealthy lifestyle. Firstly, skipping meals, intake of high-fat foods, excessive use of spices or oil and dieting are some of the inappropriate habits.