Children as young as 8 being treated for eating disorders
According to the Department of Health, up to 12 children under the age of 10 have been hospitalised for eating disorders over the past three years.
Ann McCann from the Eating Disorders Association has blamed the rise in eating disorders on the unattainable body-image ideals promoted by the media. Children exposed to images of skinny women are learning to associate thinness with attractiveness and power.
An eight year old girl was recently admitted to hospital with an eating disorder after experiencing bullying at school for being slightly overweight.
“It seems to be the ultimate insult now for children to call each other fat. It’s a word that they choose in the playground,” Ms McCann said.
Children are beginning to lie to parents and teachers about eating their lunches, which can eventually lead to a ‘starvation diet’.
Ms McCann has emphasised the need for GPs to identify the early symptoms of eating disorders in children in order to prevent the later need for hospital treatment.
Eating disorders can have a terrible effect on the body. They can cause organ failure, deficiencies, bowel problems, dental problems and mental health problems.
To find out how a nutritionist can help with anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorder, please follow the link to our Eating Disorders page.
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