Sunday, May 8, 2011


What is Pica ?

Pica is a medical disorder non nutritive in nature, it may be caused due to some psychological issues of the individual, characterized by an appetite for substances which are usually not eatable and have are non nutritive (for example clay, metal, coal, sand, dirt, soil, toothbrushes, soap, mucus, ash, gum and things which are available in powdery form or the ingredients from the food source (for example salt, flour, potato, rice, starch, ice cubes). The word Pica basically comes from a latin word magpie a bird that is reputed to eat almost everything. pica can be seen in people of all ages but most commonly seen in pregnant women,children and the people with developmental disorders.
Most commonly pica is seen in women and children, it is found in those children who have habit of eating dangerous things like lead, plastics and steels and other things which are poisonous.

Causes Of Pica Syndrome :

Pica syndrome is disorder of appetite cause due to mineral deficiency like take iron deficiency which results in celiac diseases or certain hookworms infection, the individual eats those minerals in pica form in which he is having deficiency in his body. It is usually seen that some mental health conditions like obsessive compulsive disorder can easily cause this disorder, it is also researched that traumatic stress are also lead to pica, individuals having pica disease have some sort of family problem, child abuse and some other factors too.

Symptoms Of Pica :

1. When it is diagnosed that the individual eats non nutritive foods or metals.
2. Eating those things (non nutritive) again and again by an individual.
3. Although eating poisonous or dangerous things without any hesitation.
4. Addiction of non nutritive or harmful food ingredients and also the metals.

Treatment Of Pica :

1. Treating the deficiencies of minerals in body.
2. Family advice
3. Consulting a doctor which can guide and can handle the psychological problems regarding this.
4. The therapy and medication such as SSRIs are commonly used throughout the world.
5. Zinc is successful at treating pica.
6. Behavior therapies.

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