Dec 04, 2019 07:35 AM EST
Eating Disorders Common Among College Students Around the World
Eating disorder can happen to teenagers, and even in young children. But when they hit the college years, young people, especially young women, are most at risk of having this condition.
The challenges and responsibilities of college life add pressure to the underlying mental health issues. These situations trigger the body to have an eating disorder like anorexia and bulimia.
The changes in routine occur when the realities of college life-increased assignments, less structure, and more focus on peers-collide with learning issues, productivity, anxiety, and poor self-esteem. A young woman who knows how to manage stress and stay focused during high school with a lot of hard work and support from her parents can still find herself confused in the complicated world of college.
Eating disorders are developed by a stressful environment and the need to feel control over it is channeled through food restriction, over-exercise, and an unhealthy focus on body weight.
College can be a moment of excitement, stimulation, and also a lot of stress. It is the time that requires young people who are not yet adults to act in a very adult way, especially if they're dealing with mental illness and suddenly have to begin managing it on their own whether the like it or not.
The stress of a college schedule, handling a new social environment, and coping with independent living can trigger re-emergent anxiety or other mental health issues. If you have extreme anxiety and you're in a social environment that is exposed in the ideal body looks, that's a perfect moment where the convergence of factors that can drive a vulnerable individual to experience eating disorder.
These eating disorders typically start between 18 and 21 years of age, based on the study of the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA). The association estimates that between 10 and 20% of women and 4 to 10% of men in college have eating disorders and the rates are continuously rising.
A need for control
Kids who are at danger for anorexia or bulimia might have attacked with factors to make them perfectionist every day even before entering college. Breaking down when homework wasn't perfectly done, or feeling terrible about their capabilities when activities didn't go as planned are some of the emotions they may show.
Since college life is substantially more difficult to manage. It's not just the increased workload and the disruption of an overloaded schedule. It's also a whole new set of unpredictable people, starting with a new roommate (and that roommate's love of funky things and death art, or late-night visits from her lover emo).
Managing your food intake in college is really hard. The most popular midnight pizza runs and eat-all-you-can buffets are just two of the major temptation. Irregular and unhealthy eating can cause problems for anyone, but for students struggling with eating issues, it can cause confusion on self-control and self-esteem.
Sometimes the freedom to eat at different times won't do any good to you. It is a risky environment, especially for people who are likely to have eating disorder. If you experience these symptoms or you know someone who might have it, immediately consult your doctor for assistance.
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