Characteristics of Childhood eating disturbances

Childhood eating disturbances

Characteristics of Childhood eating disturbances are metioned below:

Anorexia Nervosa:

  • Determined food avoidance
  • Weight loss or failure to gain weight during the period of preadolescent growth (10-14years) in the absence of any physical or mental illness
  • Any two of the following:

1. Preoccupation with body weight.

2. Preoccupation with energy intake.

3. Distorted body image.

4. Fear of fatness.

5. Self-induced vomiting.

6. Extensive exercise.

Bulimia Nervosa:

Binge eating followed by purging, restricting, or excessive exercise.

Food avoidance emotional disorder:

  • A primary emotional disorder resulting in avoidance of food.
  • Weight loss, or failure to gain developmentally appropriate amounts of weight.
  • No preoccupation with weight and shape.
  • Absence of body image distortion.
  • May have comorbid medical disorders/diseases.

Selective eating:

  • Food intake limited to a very small number of foods.
  • May be rigid about the brand of food or its place of purchase.
  • Food choices tend to be carbohydrates.
  • Selective eating hinders participation in social situations that include eating.
  • Attempts to increase variety in diet are met with extreme resistance.
  • Age appropriate gains in weight and shape.
  • Absence of body image distortion.
  • No fear of chocking or gagging

Restrictive eating:

  • Characteristically eats a smaller than normal amount of food.
  • Disinterested in eating.
  • No intentional food restriction.
  • Normal balance of carbohydrates, proteins and fats in diet.
  • Absence of mood disorder.
  • Height and weight within normal limits but at the lower end of percentiles.
  • May have difficulty meeting increased energy requirement during puberty.
  • Absence of body image distortion.

Food refusal:

  • Episodic, situtional, or intermittent food refusal.
  • Absence of body image distortion.
  • Emotional issues, such as unhappiness or worry, may be understanding cause.

Functional dysphagia:

  • Food avoidance, particularly foods of a certain type or texture.
  • Fear of swallowing, vomiting, chocking.
  • An aversive event may precipitate the disorder.
  • No preoccupational with weight and shape.
  • Absence of body image distortion.

Pervasive refusal syndrome:

  • Profound and pervasive refusal to eat, drink, walk, talk, or engage in self-care.
  • May be underweight and dehydrated
  • May be a form of post traumatic stress disorder.
  • Rare but potentially life threatening.
  • Usually requires hospitalization.

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