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Old 03-26-08, 05:59 PM
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Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

Teen girls who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder may have a much higher risk of developing eating disorders than girls without ADHD, a new U.S. study suggests.

Symptoms of ADHD can include a short attention span, a low level of organization, excessive talking, aggressive gestures and irritability. It affects five per cent of school-age children, according to the study's authors.

The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Virginia, found that girls with ADHD were more likely to develop eating disorders such as bulimia nervosa, in which a person first binges on food and then vomits to prevent weight gain.

"Girls with ADHD may be more at risk of developing eating problems as adolescents because they already have impulsive behaviours that can set them apart from their peers," Amori Yee Mikami, the lead author, said in a release issued on March 13.

"As they get older, their impulsivity may make it difficult for them to maintain healthy eating and a healthy weight, resulting in self-consciousness about their body image and the binging and purging symptoms."

The study involved 228 girls in San Francisco, 140 who had been diagnosed with ADHD and 88 girls without the condition. They were first assessed when they were between the ages of six and 12 and then five years after.

Affected 5-10% of girls with one type of ADHD

ADHD was divided into two types: one type included both inattention and hyperactivity/impulsivity and the other included inattention only.

The study found that five to 10 per cent of girls with the combined type of ADHD showed "clinically-concerning eating pathology," according to the authors. This included at least one binge-eating episode in the previous year and inappropriate purging to prevent weight gain.

Only one per cent of girls with the inattention form of ADHD and none of the girls in the control group engaged in these types of eating patterns.

Girls who had ADHD were more likely to have received critical parenting as kids, to have had a more difficult time relating to peers and were more likely to be overweight.

Mikami also said that parents should be aware that girls with ADHD may be more likely to use their medications to achieve weight loss.

"An additional concern is that stimulant medications used to treat ADHD have a side-effect of appetite suppression, creating a risk that overweight girls could abuse these medicines to encourage weight loss, though we have not yet investigated that possibility," Mikami said.

The study is published in the February issue of the Journal of Abnormal Psychology.
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Old 03-26-08, 06:28 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

yea oka
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Old 03-27-08, 12:05 AM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

this is EXACTLY what i was trying to talk to my doctor about but he made me seem like i was a drug-seeking lunatic. this is not the first article i've seen on this topic, but good to know it is becoming more of interest. thanks!!
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Old 03-27-08, 12:18 AM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

yea t'is true.
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Old 04-07-08, 06:57 PM
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Lightbulb Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

Eating disorders are more common in people with a need for control, but who do not have control over a large part of their lives. This helps them feel like they are achieving control over one part. It's easily imaginable that ALL ADHD/ADD girls feel like they have no control...
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Old 04-07-08, 07:22 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

There's been published books about this, like "Pieces of a pussle" på Carolyn Piver Dukarm. There's definitely a link between eating disorders and ADD.
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Old 04-12-08, 09:56 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

Thank you so much for bringing this up.

Girls are one of the most overlooked & either/or under/misdiagnosed groups out there.

What I've read indicates that hyperactivity /impulsivity in girls can often be manifested in risk taking behaviors;one of which is Eating Disorders.

For boys, look no further than "Beavis & Butthead" or "*******."

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Old 06-14-08, 06:48 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

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Originally Posted by naturechick80 View Post
This helps them feel like they are achieving control over one part. It's easily imaginable that ALL ADHD/ADD girls feel like they have no control...
That is sooooooooo true! I've always felt so OUT OF CONTROL. I have a confession to make. I often resent anorexics because the ones I've come into contact with are the overachieving Little Miss Perfect types who get straight A's and have a long resume of grand achievements. Basically, they seem like the types who are already in total control of their lives. So when they say they want more control it makes me want to scream, "F you! You're already a perfect golden girl. You wanna know what it's like to feel out of control???!!!! Try having ADHD!!!!!"

I know it's wrong and I'm ashamed for being so heartless toward anorexics. I wouldn't be surprised if the mods deleted this post. I just wanted to get it off my chest. I apologize if I've offended any anorexics.
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Old 06-14-08, 07:08 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

Quote:
Originally Posted by scarygreengiant View Post
That is sooooooooo true! I've always felt so OUT OF CONTROL. I have a confession to make. I often resent anorexics because the ones I've come into contact with are the overachieving Little Miss Perfect types who get straight A's and have a long resume of grand achievements. Basically, they seem like the types who are already in total control of their lives. So when they say they want more control it makes me want to scream, "F you! You're already a perfect golden girl. You wanna know what it's like to feel out of control???!!!! Try having ADHD!!!!!"
Anorexics are as crazy as the rest of us though. Its possible from your random sampling of them you mostly oberseved the 25% that just had anorexia as their primary problem.


Psychiatric comorbidities among female adolescents with anorexia nervosa.




Quote:
This study investigated current comorbid Axis I diagnoses associated with Anorexia Nervosa (AN) in adolescents. The sample included 101 female adolescents treated at a psychiatric unit for primary DSM-IV diagnoses of AN. 73.3% of the AN patients were diagnosed as having a current comorbidity of at least one comorbid Axis I diagnosis, with no differences across AN subtypes. Mood disorders (60.4%) were most commonly identified, followed by the category anxiety disorders without obsessive-compulsive disorders (OCD) (25.7%), OCD (16.8%) and substance use disorders (7.9%). Two specific diagnoses differed across the two subtypes of AN. Substance use disorder was 18 times, and the category anxiety disorder without OCD was three times as likely to co-occur with AN binge-eating disorder and purging type than with AN restricting type. Clinicians should be alerted to the particularly high rate of psychiatric comorbidities in adolescents suffering from AN.
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Old 06-16-08, 02:23 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

I can see the dilemma in medicating females with EDs, though.

What doctor in their right mind is going to give ADD treatment (_an appetite suppressing medication_) to someone with a BMI of 17 ?

:S

IME, people with eating disorders can be very deceptive and secretive (like an addict) about their [lack of] eating too, so this is another barrier to assessment AND treatment.

I really see the disorder as an addiction (people 'get high' from self-starvation), and as an way of exerting "control" over their bodies. To me, it is another form of self-abuse, and sometimes, a form of slow suicide.

I have a friend who has a 30 year history of anorexia, and she chronically wants to die. (You'd want to, too, if you had her monster family.)

NB Some of the inattention/dissociation may COME from the starvation, too. Not eating is a good way to fry one's cognitive abilities.
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Old 09-18-08, 11:53 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

Quote:
Originally Posted by scarygreengiant View Post
That is sooooooooo true! I've always felt so OUT OF CONTROL. I have a confession to make. I often resent anorexics because the ones I've come into contact with are the overachieving Little Miss Perfect types who get straight A's and have a long resume of grand achievements. Basically, they seem like the types who are already in total control of their lives. So when they say they want more control it makes me want to scream, "F you! You're already a perfect golden girl. You wanna know what it's like to feel out of control???!!!! Try having ADHD!!!!!"

I know it's wrong and I'm ashamed for being so heartless toward anorexics. I wouldn't be surprised if the mods deleted this post. I just wanted to get it off my chest. I apologize if I've offended any anorexics.
Oh my ... I've been bulimic, anorexic & a binge eater at different points in my life... wow that was rough to admit! My point at my thinest anorexic state I felt the same way about 'text book' anorexics ... I may have resembled them on the outside but just stop by my house unannounced or check out my car and you'd say 'Hmmm that's odd an anorexic that lives in a pigsty?'

Then again I think I been jealous & frustrated by anyone who could effortlessly keep their life organized (even if it only seems effortless)
Anyway, don't feel bad .... we all think crazy irrational thoughts about others. Saying it with such honesty helps work out the feelings ... irrational or not
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Old 09-24-08, 05:57 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

Quote:
Originally Posted by QueensU_girl View Post
I can see the dilemma in medicating females with EDs, though.

What doctor in their right mind is going to give ADD treatment (_an appetite suppressing medication_) to someone with a BMI of 17 ?

:S

IME, people with eating disorders can be very deceptive and secretive (like an addict) about their [lack of] eating too, so this is another barrier to assessment AND treatment.

I really see the disorder as an addiction (people 'get high' from self-starvation), and as an way of exerting "control" over their bodies. To me, it is another form of self-abuse, and sometimes, a form of slow suicide.

I have a friend who has a 30 year history of anorexia, and she chronically wants to die. (You'd want to, too, if you had her monster family.)

NB Some of the inattention/dissociation may COME from the starvation, too. Not eating is a good way to fry one's cognitive abilities.
Well there are many other eating problems other than anorexia. My main problem right now is over eating. Especially since I have no job and no school...I just eat all day. I have been anorexic before, and a non purging bulimic too (aka restrict/binge/restrict/binge). I think if adhd is the reason why I have had an obsession with food my whole life, then adhd medication could help..even with anorexia. Even though these pills can cause weight loss, if you are anorexic due to adhd taking these pills may STOP your need to be anorexic.
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Old 10-15-08, 03:25 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

Yea, I would not call myself anorexic in High school but I didn't eat much. Breakfast was tea and toast then I ate after school, I was about 100lbs..Now I have a binging problem. Medication helps A LOT. Before medication I wished I could purge but I could never make myself throw up...soo yea...
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Old 10-31-08, 10:21 PM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

One of the many differences between males & females is the way the symptoms are manifested.

For girls with ADHD, they internalize their symptoms via anxiety & depression.

Whereas boys, we're more likely to immitate Beavis & Butthead meet *******.

ADHD is truly a lifespan disorder in which the symptoms change over time.

For example, a hyperactive child may develop into a restless & bored adolescent.

For girls, in particular, the adolescent manifestation of ADHD ( in addition to restlessness), is talking excessively.

Girls may also display disinhibited behavior via risk taking behaviors such as eating disorders, use of alcohol, tobacco and substance abuse ( as do boys), as well as promiscuity ( same for boys as well).

While some of those behaviors obviously also apply to boys, there are distinct differences.

That's why that,in addition to age referencing, it's absolutely critical to include gender referencing as well.

My impression right now is that both of those are in the works for the DSM-V.

ED's are out of my area(s) of expertise.

What I've seen though over the past 31 years is that they are among the most, if not THE most, difficult disorders to treat.

All of you are to be saluted for your courage and resilience.

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Old 11-01-08, 05:54 AM
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Re: Girls with ADHD more likely to develop eating disorders:study

^^ Good, detailed post.

Ever since I was 12, I've been in and out of Eating Disorders(mainly bulimia and anorexia), but compared to then, I don't make myself sick god knows how many times a day anymore and I do eat. But I have days where I don't or I restrict, or I have a slip up and make myself sick. It's very hard. Very, very hard. But it's like home to me.
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