The American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder, or DSM, is a classification of mental disorders with associated criteria designed to facilitate more reliable diagnoses of these disorders (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). DSM started in America but is now widely used by students and psychologists to accurately diagnose mental disorders.Bulimia Affects More Women than Men
There are many psychological conditions that affect more women than men such as depression and anxiety. One that is less known is eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia. Eating disorders are defined as an abnormal change in eating habits that can greatly affect a person’s mental health. Hsu (1989) found that bulimia nervosa is more common among woman as they are more self-conscious about their bodies so will turn to dieting to help control their weight. The media could be a heavy influence on them as celebrities are known to keep in shape for award ceremonies and photo shoots. WebMD has stated that, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, patients diagnosed with bulimia have a history of depression. This shows there is a link between depression and eating disorders. This essay with look at the impact of bulimia nervosa and how it affects more women than men.Bulimia Affects More Women than Men
Bulimia nervosa is very common amongst adolescent girls and young women. Their behaviours can range from episodes of binge eating to over-consumption. By preventing weight gain, women can pick up on other inappropriate behaviour such as self-induced vomiting, misuse of certain medications, fasting or over-exercising. Women are so adamant about their weight and body shape that it can lead to suicide. Crow, Peterson, Swanson, Raymond, Specker, Eckert and Mitchell (2009) conducted a longitudinal study to see if eating disorders are associated with increased mortality and suicide levels. They assessed 1885 patients, using the National Death Index, who had attended a specialised eating disorder clinic within the last 8 to 25 years. They found that mortality and suicide rates were elevated in people suffering from bulimia nervosa. The limitations of this study include no real age range and only including participants from a specific clinic. It lacks population validity and can’t be generalised. Nevertheless, a longitudinal study has many benefits as people are observed over a long period of time, resulting in more accurate and natural results, as stated by Caruana, Roman, Hernandez-Sanchez and Solli (2015).
Unlike anorexia nervosa, people with bulimia nervosa tend to maintain a normal and healthy BMI. This is due to them either overeating or undereating. They are known to experience episodes of binge eating, where they can consume between 1,000 and 2,000 calories, followed by self-induced vomiting to cancel out what they have eaten (Barlow, 2014). To be diagnosed with bulimia nervosa, the patient must show symptoms of repeated episodes of binge eating ranging from once or twice a week to several times a day for a minimum of 3 months. Women can also suffer from other internal problems such as menstrual irregularity or gastrointestinal symptoms. A serious problem is cardiac arrhythmias, although this is rare (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). Due to some patients abusing alcohol and drugs, this can lead to them possibly being diagnosed with borderline personality disorder.Bulimia Affects More Women than Men