What Is Selective Eating Disorder ?

You must have come across picky eaters at some point of your life. Many complain about particular varieties of food. Unfortunately, many of them are suffering from Selective Eating Disorder. This is an eating disorder of choosy eaters. Moreover, how has picky eating become a disorder ? Let’s find out.

Selective Eating Disorder

It is also known as Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID). In this, a person is not willing to eat a selective category of foods. It may be possible that they might eat chocolates but hate cakes, maybe due to their creamy or fluffy texture. Moreover, they could avoid foods due to the smell, appearance and more. As a result, this could lead to lack of nutritional fulfilment from that concerned food in the body. Clearly, it is a mental disorder that needs urgent treatment. 

Symptoms Of Selective Eating Disorder

This eating disorder is something that people suffer at any stage of their life. Some may suffer from it in their childhood. While the others develop it in their adulthood. They show some symptoms by which one can predict it to be ARFID. Hence, here are a few symptoms of Selective Eating Disorder.

  • ARFID patients tend to not eat only a ‘certain’ type of food.
  • They could get an aversion to almost any kind of food. This could happen due to their appearance, taste, fragrance, etc.
  • Furthermore, some people can even avoid the entire fruits and vegetables. This could lead to a severe nutritional deficit.
  • However, some people could maintain a healthy balance in their bodies’ nutritional values.
  • There are many people who are badly affected because of this. Consequently, this could cause vomiting, screaming, gastric problems and many other aftereffects.

Types Of Selective Eating Disorder

  • Avoidant is a common type of ARFID. In this, a person avoids some food items. They get sensitive to certain foods.
  • Aversive is a situation in which they develop hatred towards some foodstuffs. This gives rise to vomiting, fear of being in front of them and many more.
  • Restrictive disorder is in which they have low appetite. They tend to eat less. Their bodies are very low in nutrients.
  • Adult ARFID is common in adults. For instance, they tend to have this disorder since their adolescence phase.
  • ARFID ‘Plus’ is the experience of more than one type of ARFID. Not only food intake, but they may suffer from other fears as well. These include weight gain and weight loss, body shape, fat deposition and other related stuff. They are more likely to avoid foods because of a constant fear that they might gain weight. 

Treatment Of ARFID

Despite the fact that this condition gets cured with time, it still needs treatment. There are various treatments for Selective Eating Disorder. Also, they are different for children and adults. For adults, Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy is common and effective. On the contrary, it is different for children. For example, the treatment for them is Systematic Desensitization.

REFERENCE: Eating Recovery Center

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