COVID-19 pandemic is triggering eating disorders: Health ExpertsTop Stories

September 16, 2020 15:32
COVID-19 pandemic is triggering eating disorders: Health Experts

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Along with a lot of other health issues, COVID-19 also triggers eating disorders but gets unnoticed according to the experts.

The coronavirus pandemic has proved to be deadlier than one has ever imagined. People are so petrified that some of them are locking themselves in their homes and stepping out only when necessary.

Meanwhile, the vaccine for COVID-19 is not going to be in our hands in anytime soon. The latest news on the virus that is doing rounds is that patients are showing some other side effects post-recovery and the experts have predicted that these symptoms can last up to 2 months.

While the isolations, self quarantines, and institutional quarantines are still in place to curb the spread of the infection, they come with a cost.

According to a report in Sydney Morning Herald, stress about contracting the coronavirus, changes in routine during the lockdown, and empty supermarket shelves have triggered eating disorders among people.

According to Sydney’s Herald, the national helpline to treat eating disorders is flooded with calls in such volume that the counselors cannot take every call as it comes.

This helpline in Australia has counselors and mental health professionals including psychologists and social workers with specialist training in eating disorders.

From March to August, the helpline has received 15,835 calls regarding eating disorders and body image problems which are 43 percent higher when compared to the previous year.

This number has been heightened in Victoria since the second wave of coronavirus and stage 4 restrictions in Melbourne.

The experts at the helpline say that eating disorders spike when in isolation for a longer period of time.

While some people have reported with this issue for the first time, some of the already-affected people have developed severe symptoms this time.

85 percent of the calls which were received during the lockdown period was from the first time callers while 15 percent have already suffered from the same but aggravated this time.

Not just Australia, the entire world is facing the same issue. A recent survey found out that 62 percent of the people in the US who have experienced anorexia, an eating disorder, have reported worsening symptoms after the pandemic started.

According to health experts, eating disorders thrive in anxious times and can also pose a lethal threat.

According to the Indian Journal of Psychiatry, a study was carried out in 2015 and the experts concluded that the eating disorders in Indians seem to be caused due to psychological triggers related to family or achievement or the feeling of being a failure or not being able to reach parental expectations.

As it is a shame in India to reach psychiatrists for help, the issue always went unnoticed.

By Gayatri Yellayi

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COVID-19  eating disorder  Sydney  Australia  US  India