How Are Eating Disorders and Drug Abuse Connected?

How Are Eating Disorders and Drug Abuse Connected?Eating disorders and addiction will open the door for the other, which will worsen the preexisting condition. The rapidly changing personality and unpredictable mood swings of any California drug addict make them perfect targets for developing eating disorders. Someone with an eating disorder may turn to drugs as a way to deal with an unrealistic body image, or someone striving for a perfect body may take a drug that curbs appetite.

The Causes of Eating Disorders and Addiction

The two most common causes for eating disorders are very similar to the causes of an addiction. Inherited genetics and biochemical changes may be responsible for either an eating disorder or an addiction. Consider these factors in the following ways:

  • Genetics – a person whose family has a history of eating disorders or substance abuse is more likely to develop the same disorders as a result of sharing the same genes. This means that if a California resident has a family member that struggles with one of these issues, he is more likely to have this problem as well.
  • Biochemical – serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine are chemicals the brain uses to send signals between neurotransmitters. For example, emotions like happiness have their own chemical message that is sent throughout the brain. Even simple changes can disrupt this delicate balance, such as stress, insomnia or inactivity. With this in mind, it’s no wonder that an extremely bad diet or chemicals from substance abuse may cause psychological changes.

If a California resident struggles with any of these problems, he should seek professional help.

Types of Eating Disorders

The four most common types of eating disorders are listed below:

  • Anorexia nervosa: An obsessive need to lose weight by not eating
  • Bulimia nervosa: Overeating with the intention of self-induced vomiting or purging, commonly followed by depression (as well as guilt or shame) and fasting
  • Binge eating disorder: Eating large amounts within a short amount of time followed by periods of fasting
  • Compulsive overeating: Eating more than necessary, causing guilt and more overeating

These problems are devastating and require professional treatment for recovery.

How Eating Disorders Are Similar to Addiction

With each binge meal or popped pill your body experiences pleasure. This is because your brain’s reward pathway has just given you a chemical treat. Dopamine is usually the culprit, sending messages of euphoria across neurotransmitters to make you feel happy for a short time. However, the good feelings don’t last long as they give way to guilt, shame and depression in people with an eating disorder or substance abuse problem. Both an eating disorder and addiction will continue for the same reasons: an overpowering, unexplainable need for drugs that perpetuates the problem. Declining mental, emotional and physical health worsen the condition. Eating disorders and addiction both cause secrecy, isolation and other problems for many California residents.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment for Co-occurring Disorders

If an eating disorder and an addiction are present simultaneously, both conditions must be treated at the same time to avoid relapse. Dual Diagnosis patients may experience multiple co-occurring disorders, meaning that a mental health issue, such as depression, is coupled with a substance abuse problem, such as oxycodone addiction. Patients will then need treatment for both issues.

California Addiction Help

By calling our toll-free helpline, you can begin your recovery from substance abuse. There is absolutely no cost and we’re waiting 24 hours a day to connect you with treatment options that are right for you. When you call ask about how your insurance may cover the costs of your treatments in rehab.

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