Eating disorders are complex and can feel overwhelming or defeating. While asking for help is key to recovery, there are also a few key pieces of advice you can follow that may help you cope as you seek treatment.
Understand size diversity
Everyone has a unique genetic composition that influences their bone structure, body size, weight, and shape differently. Your body can be healthy across a wide range of weights. It is normal for health to look different in different people.
Try to stay away from comparing your body with your friends’ bodies or celebrities on TV and social media. Remember, we are all naturally different.
Ask yourself how you are feeling
Have you noticed any physical health effects or emotional effects of your eating behaviors? What changes are you willing to make in your life to establish a healthy relationship with food? What do you gain from your current eating habits?
When you start to notice your eating habits are affecting your life, mood, and ability to concentrate, it is important to talk to someone about what you are going through. This can be with your parents or guardians, or another trusted adult. Remember that it is never too early to ask for help!
Get professional help
Getting help from a team of professionals, like your doctor, a therapist and a dietician can help you understand and manage your feelings and behaviors. You can contact the National Eating Disorders Helpline at (800) 931-2237 or text “NEDA” to 741741 for immediate support.
If your child expresses thoughts of wanting to harm themselves or others, call 9-1-1 or visit the nearest Emergency Department.
Text “NEDA” to 741741
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMA) www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/eating-disorders
National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA)
National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD)