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Running head: TYPES OF EATING DISORDERS 1 Types of Eating Disorders Marly Harris Liberty University TYPES OF EATING DISORDERS 2 Abstract Eating disorders are becoming alarmingly more prevalent in todays society. They are defined by multiple characteristics such as disturbances in eating behavior, self- perception, cognition, social emotional functioning (Harrison, Tchanturia, Naumann, & Treasure, 2012), body image distortion, and an overwhelming fear of gaining weight (Kanel, 2012). These disorders diminish the physical and mental health of the individuals who suffer from them. Individuals may experience impaired brain function (i.e. cognitive flexibility, problem solving, decision making). There are three clinically defined types of eating disorders: (a) anorexia nervosa, (b) bulimia nervosa, and (c) eating disorder not otherwise specified. Specific characteristics of each type of eating disorder distinguish them from one another, yet similar symptoms can and do appear in each type, making it harder to diagnose and treat. Treatments have been semi-successful, and researchers are working to create more specific techniques for each disorder in hope of raising long-term recovery rates. TYPES OF EATING DISORDERS 3 Types of Eating Disorders Eating disorders are quickly rising to be an unsettlingly common disease in the world today. Eating disorders are defined by numerous characteristics, such as disturbances in eating behavior, self-perception, cognition, social emotional functioning (Harrison, Tchanturia, Naumann, & Treasure, 2012), body image distortion, which includes a disturbance in the way the way in which one's body weight or shape is experienced, undue influence of body weight or shape on self-evaluation, or denial of the seriousness of current low body weight (Castellini et al., 2012, p. 1), and overwhelming fear of gaining weight (Kanel, 2012). The American Psyciatric Association (APA) (2000) and Hudson, Hiripi, Pope and Kessler (2007) claim eating disorders are prone to begin in a persons life during adolescence and young adulthood (as cited in Keel, Brown, & Heatherton, 2012). Consequently, female adolescents and young adults suffer the most from eating disorders (Stein et al., 2012), affecting 10% of this particular population (Stice, Rohde, Durant, & Shaw, 2012) . About 90% to 95% of persons afflicted with an eating disorder are women (Kanel, 2012). Roughly 7 million females and 1 million males suffer from some form of an eating disorder (Kanel, 2012). The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4 th ed.; DSM-IV ; APA, 1994) recognizes three types of eating disorders (a) anorexia nervosa, (b) bulimia nervosa, and (c) eating disorder not otherwise specified (as cited in Thomas, Vartanian, and Brownell , 2009). As these disorders are becoming more prevalent problems in todays society, researchers are investigating the mechanics causing eating disorders and how to better treat them (Stein TYPES OF EATING DISORDERS... View Full Document

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