Related to Caregivers


Related to Caregivers
Q: Why the bulimic patients eat normally in front of their family which seems that they do not have such problem?
A: Bulimic patients will not have sudden increment in pounds as they have compensatory behaviors for their food consumption. It is therefore difficult for their friends and even their family members to discover their illness. Besides, patients will choose to eat alone secretly while pretending to eat normally or even eating less in front of others. It is therefore important for family members and friends to aware of one’s psychological and behavioral symptoms of BN.
Q: Will Anorexia Nervosa (AN) problems be solved easily by eating more?
A: AN is a psychosomatic illness, in which patients try to vent out their psychological problems by eating. They lose control and do not feel hungry. The illness must be treated by psychotherapy, in order to tackle the patient's psychological concerns; merely forcing the patient to eat will not work.
Q: My daughter refuses to eat. Should I ask her to eat?
A: Whether to eat or not becomes a question annoying not only patients but also their caregivers. For normal situation, we usually do not recommend family members to struggle for the matter of food consumption with patients, particularly when the patients start receiving psychotherapy. Actually such arguments do not have constructive meaning and also deteriorate the relationship between the patients and their family members. Caregivers actually play an important role during the process of the psychotherapy. A negative relationship between patients and their family members may cause avoidance of the normal contact which eventually affects the treatment process.
Q: Does treatment of eating disorders require hospitalization?
A: The need for hospitalization depends largely on the patient's physical conditions (indicators such as weight, blood pressure and pulse rate) and emotional stability. Anorexic patients are normally considered for hospitalization due to their underweight. It is usually recommended by a doctor following an assessment of the patient's normal functioning. For a patient whose condition is marginal, it is his/her personal choice to stay outpatient if the support from his/her family members is enough for any accidental cases, such as sudden fall. It is difficult to say that whether hospitalization is the best choice, however, the only thing can be for sure is patients’ physical conditions are monitored by professional bodies if under hospitalization. As for bulimic patients, they normally receive outpatient treatments and are seldom hospitalized. However, when their compensatory behaviors (such as self-induced vomiting) cause other complications (such as gastritis) or if their mood is so unstable that there is a suicidal ideation, they need to be hospitalized.