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Bulimia Diagnosis

Bulimia Diagnosis
Bulimia nervosa
Causes and Risk Factors

If you suspect that a friend or loved one has bulimia, providing support the right way is an important step before seeking a diagnosis from a doctor. Avoid dictating actions, creating shame or making light of the situation. Be sure to address the issue in privacy and make sure that there are no interruptions. Additionally, a person who is experiencing bulimia may not admit or recognize that they have a problem, so support might be needed over time. Express your concern about their health, and urge them to see professional care.

Medical exams
Sometimes dentists are the first doctors to notice symptoms of bulimia through routine examinations. Once you are ready to seek help, however, you can schedule an appointment with your family doctor. Your doctor will use a variety of methods in order to confirm or exclude a bulimia nervosa. Some of diagnostic tests may include:

Dental exam - A dental exam may show signs of cavities, gingivitis, or other gum infections. Teeth enamel will show signs of exposure to stomach acids in vomit with pitted or eroded enamel.

Physical exam - Some people who are diagnosed with bulimia may show signs of being underweight, perhaps due to an accompanying eating disorder, such as anorexia. Your doctor may also look for dry skin, and examine vital signs as well as listen to the heart and lungs.

Psychological exam - You may be referred to a psychologist or psychiatrist and be given a questionnaire to examine beliefs and behaviour regarding eating, and body size and shape.

Other tests: The chem-20 test shows electrolyte imbalances and dehydration. Additionally, your doctor may order other tests to examine your heart for irregularities, such as an electrocardiogram or a complete blood count to check the blood for abnormalities.

In order to be diagnosed with bulimia nervosa, a person must have at least two complete binge and purge cycles per week for 3 months or more; be extremely concerned with body weight and size; and appear to not have control over eating behaviour.

Once your doctor makes a diagnosis, you can begin treatment. To learn more about treatment for bulimia nervosa, read here for more information.

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Tags: being underweight, infections, gingivitis, diagnosis, treatment, symptoms, address, stomach, weight, acids, heart, admit, skin, anorexia bulimia nervosa, anorexia eating disorder, dry skin treatment, anorexia bulimia, about bulimia, anorexia information, anorexia treatment
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