A new study published by the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders revealed that up to 70% of those with eating disorders don’t have the more commonly known disorders like anorexia or bulimia. They have what is called “eating disorder not otherwise specified,” or EDNOS, which is characterized by traits of anorexia and bulimia but don’t necessarily meet the DSM criteria for either.
EDNOS can be more deadly with a 5.2% mortality rate, which is higher than anorexia and bulimia. The increased mortality rate is because the disordered eating behaviors vary from one person to another, making harder to detect, diagnose and treat. Therefore the lag time between the onset of the disorder and treatment for eating disorders increases. Also, most sufferers flip flop between anorexia and bulimia and binge eating, which can give the illusion of a healthy body weight despite the inner damage and strain on vital organs like the heart. Other health effects are compounded by various EDNOS behaviors such as compulsive exercise, laxative use, binge eating and food restricting include loss of menstruation, fainting and heart arrhythmia.
Eating disorders are known to have the highest mortality rate of any psychiatric diagnosis – including alcoholism and addiction to dangerous, overdose prone drugs like heroin. This makes eating disorder treatment more crucial and timely to the person suffering from any eating disorder - be it anorexia, bulimia or EDNOS.
There are excellent treatment centers for eating disorders that help those struggling restore their physical well being while simultaneously tackling the psychological characteristics the underlie the eating disorder. If you or a loved one is in the grips of an eating disorder, Passport to Recovery has hand picked some of the most reputable eating disorder treatment centers to help you on your road to recovery.