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What Are Side Effects of Purging?

Learn about the side effects of purging disorder from Allegra Broft, M.D. in this Howcast video about eating disorders.


So the side affects of Purging disorder are similar to the sides of effects from eating problems where purging is prominent like Bulimia nervosa. Purging, typically in the form of vomiting, possibly also laxative abuse, diet pill use, and other ways of compensating for ingestion of calories can be loaded with side affects. So what you're doing with most of these compensatory behaviors like vomiting or laxative use is, you're moving fluids in and out of the body, water and electrolytes. You're not really accomplishing that much as far actually changing the amount of calories that sort of stay in the or not. This we actually know.

And so what you're doing as far as creating side effects is, you're creating the effects of being dehydrated. So in Purging disorder you might feel light headed. You might feel dizzy. Your blood pressure might go down. And you can also have other side effects that can be related to electrolyte fluctuations. Low potassium is one of the big medical signs in purging types of problems. And low potassium can have a whole consolation of symptoms including feeling weak and crampy. In severe cases can lead to things like heart arrhythmia.

So these types of side effects from Purging disorder are not to be taken lightly. There are also the psychological effects of engaging in something like Purging disorder. So the after effect of doing something in secret so regularly, which means, you're staying in isolation, you're probably withdrawing from friends and family, and keeping secrets, and that can't feel good either, can lead to feelings of low self esteem, isolation. So lots of side effects that come from Purging disorder, and I can't overstate how important it is to try to get help for Purging disorder, other types of purging problems like Bulimia nervosa. And good help is out there.

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