Polyphagia (overeating)

General or Other | General Practice | Polyphagia (overeating) (Disease)


Polyphagia refers to excessive hunger; increased appetite. An increase in appetite can be a normal physiological response that occurs, for example, in children and adolescents during periods of growth or following strenuous activity or excessive caloric demand.

While most commonly it is used to describe a symptom of diabetes, it actually is used to describe the same symptom in a number of different diseases. For example, diseases such as Prader-Willi Syndrome (compulsive eating) and Kleine Syndrome (hyperthalmus disorder) have excessive hunger as a symptom.

Polyphagia is used to describe a symptom of eating disorders such as anorexia. Pregnancy and low blood sugar may also cause a person to experience excessive hunger.

Causes and Risk factors

In some case, an increase in appetite can be a sign of an abnormal condition, such as some endocrinologic conditions. Increased appetite may also be seen in certain emotional or psychiatric conditions, as well as a response to stress, anxiety, or depression. Certain prescription drugs can also increase appetite. It is important to take into account the context and any related emotional or physical factors when determining whether one has an abnormally increased appetite.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Since Polyphagia is more of a symptom of certain disorder or illness applicable treatment varies on the medical condition. Therefore the treatment should be directly applied to its cause. For those who have excessive eating because of diabetes insulin and other medications that can regulate blood sugar should be taken. For those with hyperthyroidism there are also prescriptive medications that can be taken. In some cases, radioactive therapy and surgery can be done depending on the level of the disease.

What is important to note is that Polyphagia is not a contagious disease. This can be treated and can be controlled.

It will always be good to consult your medical doctor or physician immediately for any disorders that you may feel. ...