Bulimia Physical Effects happen both inside and outside your body. Today I am focusing on the side effects of bulimia that can make you feel ugly.
I suffered from bulimia for 10 years. It's amazing how it ravages your looks. I had gray bags under my eyes, my skin looked dry and flaky... I had ugly sores around my mouth and my teeth were rotten!
After suffering from the nasty bulimia physical effects for a long time... I eventually managed to recover. It was amazing how the life returned to my face. I realized something that I hadn't realized for years... I was pretty.
'Bulimia Teeth' is the name that I give to the teeth of a bulimic person. I call them bulimia teeth because I have no other name for teeth that deteriorate so quickly!
Fillings, crowns, root canals... The mouth of a bulimic is often full with all of these. I have had 6 root canals, 30 fillings and 2 veneers...
At the age of 17 I spent my entire savings of $6000 to get all that work done... What an amazing holiday I could have had with that money!
Bulimia teeth and gum disease aren't one of the most serious dangers in bulimia... But they can cause you a lot of emotional and financial strain. I remember feeling an immense amount of stress and anxiety about all the dentist bills I had to pay.
I was also terrified that my dental problems would make people realize that I was bulimic.
Mouth sores look ugly and boy, are they painful! They are caused by a combination of two things...
The first is poor nutrition. Bulimics often have a fatty and sugary diet, low in all the nutrients needed for good health. They also throw up a lot of their food... which effects the absorption of essential nutrients. Being low in all these things makes the body weak and susceptible to mouth sores.
The second cause of mouth sores in bulimics is stomach acid. When we throw up, stomach acid is forced into places it's not supposed to go. Stomach acid is strong stuff. It damages the soft tissue in and around your mouth, giving your sores... Big, red and painful sores.
Have you ever suffered from chipmunk cheeks? If you're bulimic.. chances are that you have.
Chipmunk cheeks make your face look round and puffy. They make you face appear swollen and overweight. Chipmunk cheeks are caused when your Lymph nodes, Salivary glands and Parotid glands swell up after lots of bingeing and purging.
Chipmunk cheeks aren't one of the permanent bulimia physical effects... They should gradually go down once you begin your bulimia recovery.
Anemia is one of the nasty side effects of bulimia. It makes even the easiest things seem like absolute chores! But what I found worse than that was how anemia made me LOOK!
Anemia will make you white and sickly. It also gives you gray bags under your eyes. It pretty much makes you look like you haven't slept for a month.
A simple blood test will tell you if you are anemic or not. If you are - then iron supplements with vitamin C will be able to get your iron levels back on track :)
Lanugo is one of the very embarrassing bulimia physical effects! It's when you grow extra hair (to keep warm) because of starvation and malnutrition...
And when I say extra hair... I don't mean beautiful shiny locks on your head. I mean facial hair, back hair and extra thick leg hair.
I've always had bushy eyebrows (thank goodness for Huda - my beautician who threads them!) But I'm sure that when I was bulimic, they were much, much bigger! I was looking at photos the other day and they almost joined up with my hairline! This could have been the early stages of Lanugo.
The pressure from forcing yourself to throw up can cause you to pop a blood vessel in your eye. This is quite scary looking... and will give you the fright of your life!
This can take a long time to heal (normally about 1 month) and will most likely leave you feeling very embarrassed.
One of the awesome girls in the online Bulimia Recovery Program and support community that I run experienced this just before she joined my program. In her words...
"I looked completely demonic and people were properly scared of me. It also was the reson my mum found out I had bulimia."
Don't panic. There are things you can do to help restore your looks.
The first is to dive into your bulimia recovery. It's pointless trying to fix your looks without fixing the cause of the problem. In my free e-book below I teach you the 10 steps I used to recover from bulimia.
Once you recover from bulimia, the life should return to your face...
If you eat a healthy diet, your anemia and chipmunk cheeks will fade in time. You'll stop getting broken blood vessels in your eyes and eventually your body hair will return to normal.
Your mouth sores will go away when you stop vomiting and start eating healthy foods. I haven't had a mouth sore for over 5 years now!
The one thing that unfortunately won't return to normal is your bulimia teeth. For advice on fixing bulimia teeth, click here.
Article by Shaye Boddington
Author of your-bulimia-recovery.com
and creator of The Bulimia Recovery Program and Community