In a study comprised of nearly 2,500 individuals with an eating disorder, nearly 60% had an anxiety disorder. While it’s common to see a co-occurrence of eating disorders with depression and substance use, anxiety is actually the most common of all the disorders co-occurring with anorexia. These comorbidity findings are beginning to raise important questions about the very nature of eating disorders, and their treatment.
Honoring your body and treating it with respect starts with the understanding that there is a natural diversity of body sizes and shapes. Healthy isn’t “one size fits all.” There isn’t one height, weight, or shape that is healthy.
Imagine a world where you encountered your biggest fear, day in and day out, sometimes for hours on end. If you can do that, you can just start to empathize with someone living with an eating disorder. In the United States, 20 million women and 10 million men suffer from a clinically significant eating disorder at some time in their life. Eating disorders are real, complex, conditions that can have devastating consequences for an individual’s health and wellbeing.
When you’re faced with overwhelming sadness or anxiety so all-encompassing that it’s impossible to do simple, everyday activities, reaching out and talking with someone about it can help. Giving a voice to your feelings can be cathartic, and it can help you to feel less alone. It’s important though, to think before hand about who you want to open up to. To help you decide, we’ve put together a list of characteristics that may make someone an ideal support.
Social media has become an integral part of our lives. We use it to share photos and funny stories, talk about our political viewpoints and catch up with friends. It can also be a place where we feel comfortable talking about our struggles or our pain. It may be easier to write about how we feel behind a screen than sharing it with someone in person. When we’re struggling, we may isolate ourselves and social media becomes one of our only connections to others.
The creative arts can provide numerous benefits for people living with mental health conditions. Research has shown that engaging in any creative process is healing. Whether you make a sketch in your drawing pad, choreograph dance moves to your favorite song, or spend some time learning a new instrument, the arts can help you to lower stress and anxiety, feel calmer and more relaxed, and can give you a sense of accomplishment.