- Bulimia is a relatively frequent eating disorder. This problem arises when a large amount of food is ingested and then followed by a feeling of fear of getting fatter, which leads later to elimination behaviours of ingested food, such as the induction of vomiting, intense physical activity, and ingestion of laxatives and diuretics. Bulimia is often a silent pathology, given that the individual conceals this problem, due to shame or fear of being misunderstood. While an anorexic person denies having this disease, a person suffering from bulimia is embarrassed and often hides the problem. The individual often understands the existence of the problem, however has difficulty controlling the exaggerated intake of food. Generally, bulimic individuals are not overweight since they use mechanisms to maintain their weight. In order to address this psychopathology, psychological support is recommended.
How can psychological support help?
- Psychological support aims to help individuals to explore and integrate their emotions. In particular, it may help to understand their rationale and feelings regarding the deviant eating behaviour and other associated behaviours, such as isolation, unwellness and despair; understand the relationship with the individual’s internal psychological dynamics; and foster healthy eating behaviours. Other health professionals may complement the intervention, since during the use of induced laxatives and vomiting, in addition to excluding food, gastric acid is also expulsed, which can lead to damage in the mouth and oesophagus, causing physical health problems.