Markapura (markapura) wrote in ed_ucate,

Self Diagnosis, Information and Hyper-wanarexia

It concerns me deeply that there are many people within ED communities that are satisfied with their self-diagnosis - usually incorrect as far as I can make out. I can see links to DSM-IV criteria for ED's as a useful tool to give an indication as to what the problem is: but not as a tool for final diagnosis because one "feels" ana or mia. Just because someone hasn't eaten for 28 hours does not make them on a "fast" or anorexic. Just because there have been a few episodes of binging with guilt to follow, doesn't eventuate a diagnosis of Binge Eating Disorder. I think you follow. Even so, if these people were actually as worried as they make out in their posts, surely they would see a doctor to provide assistance? eg. One that had allegedly purged massive amounts of clotted blood, and posted on the internet about it, but didn't seek medical help. And obviously, there are others like it every day.

I also believe that the flux of correct information also allows these wanarexics to "talk" symptoms that they don't actually have. The wondrous psychological fraternity are calling these types, cyberchondriacs. We all are aware (even if loosely) what a hypochondriac is. Just add the internet and we have a cyberchondriac. For a cyberchondriac this access to information is gold. There is so much at their fingertips, and with seemingly consummate ease they can troll into a genuine sufferers diary and "lift" their feelings from the screen - and make them their own. They can then infuse these symptoms into their psyches, leading to incorrect diagnosis by their GPs, due to the convincing nature of their words.

I am not knocking any communities, but just had a thought as to the rise of Hyper-wanabes, and in my opinion this has something to do with it.

I am not saying that the communities should stop providing this information. It's sorely needed amongst all the other crap that is posted around ED communities. A light at the end of a very tedious tunnel to be honest. There is always a danger in providing information. Some know how to use it correctly and others feed on it to create symptoms that don't exist. Worse still, use the information, incorrectly comprehended, and offer it as advice to their community members. I could name a user, but I am aware that those that "know" me, will totally understand who it be that I am referring to.

Anyway. Just a thought.

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