Statistics about Anorexia & Bulimia
Eating Disorders have the highest death rate of all mental illness. They are very serious.
How Many People with an Eating Disorder?
1.7*per cent of the New Zealand population suffer from an eating disorder which means approximately 68,000 New Zealanders will develop an eating disorder sometime in their life time. Bulimia is twice as common as anorexia.
The Eating Disorder Foundation of Australia believes up to 5 per cent of all Australians have an eating disorder.
*NZ Mental Health Survey 2006
How many people die of it?
Anorexia has a much higher mortality rate than bulimia. One in 100 with anorexia who have sought treatment die each year and, up to 20 per cent die over a 20 year period as a result of complications bought on by the illness and suicide.
Who gets it?
Females represent approximately 90 percent and males 10 percent of all eating disorders.
Average age of onset?
The average age for the onset of an eating disorder is 17 years, although the age of people getting anorexia appears to be dropping with cases being diagnosed in girls as young as 10 years.
Bulimia usually affects women in their late teens and 20's. Amongst 15-24yr old females, anorexia and bulimia are the third most common chronic illnesses after asthma and obesity.
It typically takes 5-6 years of treatment to recover.
60 per cent fully recover, 20 per cent partially recover and 20 per cent never recover.Typically recovery from bulimia is faster and has higher sucess rates than people with anorexia.
How Common is Co-morbidity
Co-morbidity is very high for people with eating disorder. This means a person with an eating disorder often suffers from related mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, fear and isolation. Suicidal thoughts and strong feelings of self loathing are also common. The NZ Mental Health survey 2006 found bulimics had 47.8 per cent serious co morbidity against 22.7% for all other mental health illnesses.
Long term effects
The long-term effects of anorexia on the body and mind can be alarming and severe with infertility and osteoporosis not uncommon.
Adjusting to a normal diet and gaining weight can be stressful and alarming creating mood swings, anxiety and depression.
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