Eating disorders: what you can do to spot and prevent them

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Teachers can often be the first to spot the signs of anorexia or bulimia in their students. But if you have concerns, what should you do? And is there any action schools can take to minimise the risk of a child developing one of these life-threatening conditions? Zofia Niemtus reports

Eating disorders: The telling signs that a student is struggling

Among the many mental health issues that can affect young people, anorexia nervosa has the highest mortality rate. The condition brings the risk of serious long-term health damage – to the brain and other vital organs – as well as a high risk of suicide.

As a result, there has been “a huge transformation in eating disorders services in England over the past few years”, explains Dr Tara Porter, a clinical psychologist and eating disorder specialist at the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, despite cuts to other mental health provision for young people.

“There are a lot of problems ...

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