Anorexia Nervosa

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Anorexia Nervosa
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    Overlapping Autistic and BPD Traits

    Sensitivity to Abandonment

    Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria is common among Autists and Adhders. Rejection sensitivity is an intense sensitivity to rejection or perceived rejection. People with RSD often go to great lengths to avoid situations that cause them to feel rejected. They also have strong reactions when they perceive themselves as being rejected.

    A Diffuse Sense of Self

    A diffuse sense of self. A core feature of BPD is a “diffuse sense of self” or lack of “self-identity,” often resulting from early childhood development/trauma. High-masking autists, who learn to socialize through copying/becoming chameleons, often lack a true social identity

    Chronic Feelings of Emptiness

    These feelings are commonly reported among high-masking autistics. This likely is related to diffuse identity due to social masking. Many autists also experience a sense of emptiness during burnout and when not actively engaged in a task

    Social Difficulties

    Social interactions & maintaining long-term relationships can be challenging for both groups. However, the core reasons behind difficulty often have different origins and must be considered.

    Emotional Dysregulation

    Emotional dysregulation is a core feature of BPD. Autists also struggle with emotional dysregulation due to the autistic brain wiring/chemistry. Sensory overload and sensory meltdowns can also lead to emotional dysregulation

    Depersonalization and Derealization

    Depersonalization involves the sensation that a person’s body/self is unreal or altered in a strange way.

    Derealization involves the experience of the external world being bizarre, unreal, or dream-like.

    Insecure Attachment Style

    BPD is characterized by an insecure attachment style (typically anxious/preoccupied)

    Autistic people often experience insecure attachments. Autistic people are more likely to have an avoidant attachment style: One study found a higher rate of avoidant attachment styles among Autistic individuals. No association was found between anxious attachment and autistic traits

    Eating Disorders

    Both have a high % of eating disorders (may function as a method of self-soothing/gaining a sense of control)

    One study found that 53.8% of people with BPD met the criteria for an Eating Disorder (21.7% anorexia nervosa and 24.1% bulimia nervosa) (Salters-Pedneault).

    While the rates vary, most researchers agree that about 23% of people diagnosed with anorexia nervosa are Autistic. However, it is likely an underrepresentation due to the fact Autism often goes undiagnosed within this population

    Co-occurring Mood Disorders

    Both groups have an elevated risk of having co-occurring mood disorders such as depression and anxiety.

    According to one study, 79% of Autists met the criteria for a co-occurring psychiatric tradition at least once in their life (Lever and Geurts).

    Major depressive disorder and PTSD commonly co-occur with BPD. One study reported 83% of those with BPD would meet the criteria for Major Depression at least once in their life


    Do things improve? #TreatmentresistantDepression #Anxiety #PTSD #AnorexiaNervosa

    When do things improve? I finally went back to a psychiatrist for med adjustments after a few years due to multiple bad experiences. My regular doctor was prescribing, but didn’t know enough about the meds. I see a therapist weekly. This episode of depression isn’t lifting. It has been months. Not being hungry has caused an increase in my anxiety. How I get up and to work is a huge challenge. I also have SI. I am a Special Education teacher with a student that has many of the same diagnoses. She is a huge trigger to me. Over the weekend she attempted suicide - she is 13. I am very glad she did not succeed. I know she needs lots of help and is getting it long before I ever did which is a positive. Is it bad to think at least she had the determination to try suicide?

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    Emotional and behavioral symptoms

    Select all that apply
    9 days left
    Severely restricting food intake through dieting or fasting
    Exercising excessively
    Bingeing and self-induced vomiting to get rid of food,
    Denial of hunger or making excuses for not eating
    Eating only a few certain "safe" foods,
    Not wanting to eat in public
    Fear of gaining weight
    Frequent checking in the mirror for perceived flaws
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    CBT for body dysmorphia


    Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is an often-severe disorder that usually begins during early adolescence and appears to be common in youth. BDD consists of preoccupation with a nonexistent or slight defect(s) in physical appearance that causes clinically significant distress or impairment in functioning; the symptoms are not better accounted for by another mental disorder (e.g., anorexia nervosa). BDD is characterized by substantial impairment in psychosocial functioning and markedly high rates of suicidality.

    However, despite its severity and description for more than a century, BDD remains underrecognized in both youth and adults.

    Because BDD usually begins during early adolescence, is often chronic, and causes substantial morbidity in youth, early intervention is critical. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is the best tested and most promising psychosocial treatment for adults with BDD. However, CBT has not been developed for or tested in youth.

    In fact, no evidence-based psychosocial treatment of any type is available for youth with this common and severe illness. Thus, there is a pressing need for an efficacious psychosocial treatment for this age group. A BDD treatment practice guideline from the United Kingdom’s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence underscores the paucity of treatment research on BDD and calls for more treatment research, especially in youth.

    You can refer to this:

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    BPD + Anorexia Nervosa

    Anorexia — is an eating disorder characterized by an abnormally low body weight, an intense fear of gaining weight and a distorted perception of weight. People with anorexia place a high value on controlling their weight and shape, using extreme efforts that tend to significantly interfere with their lives.

    To prevent weight gain or to continue losing weight, people with anorexia usually severely restrict the amount of food they eat. They may control calorie intake by vomiting after eating or by misusing laxatives, diet aids, diuretics or enemas. They may also try to lose weight by exercising excessively. No matter how much weight is lost, the person continues to fear weight gain.

    Anorexia isn't really about food. It's an extremely unhealthy and sometimes life-threatening way to try to cope with emotional problems. When you have anorexia, you often equate thinness with self-worth.

    Anorexia, like other eating disorders, can take over your life and can be very difficult to overcome. But with treatment, you can gain a better sense of who you are, return to healthier eating habits and reverse some of anorexia's serious complications.#MentalIllness #MentalHealth

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