Habla de los desórdenes alimenticios con tu hijo(a) adolescente - MUIR DIABLO OCCUPATIONAL MEDICINE

Sep 23, 2021

Talking to Your Teenager About Eating Disorders

As a parent, it is crucial to have open and honest conversations with your teenager, especially when it comes to sensitive topics like eating disorders. At MUIR DIABLO OCCUPATIONAL MEDICINE, we understand the importance of discussing these issues and providing valuable guidance to help you navigate this challenging territory.

Recognizing the Signs and Symptoms

Before discussing eating disorders with your teenager, it's essential to familiarize yourself with the signs and symptoms. Look for changes in eating habits, sudden or extreme weight loss, obsession with calorie counting or body image, excessive exercise routines, and emotional distress surrounding food. Keep in mind that these signs may vary depending on the type of eating disorder.

Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia nervosa is characterized by an extreme fear of gaining weight, leading to severe food restriction and self-starvation. Individuals with anorexia often exhibit a distorted body image and may engage in excessive exercise to control their weight. If you notice your teenager avoiding meals, restricting food intake, or expressing intense dissatisfaction with their body shape, it's crucial to address these concerns promptly.

Bulimia Nervosa

Bulimia nervosa involves episodes of binge-eating followed by compensatory behaviors such as self-induced vomiting, excessive exercise, or the misuse of laxatives. Teens with bulimia may try to conceal their behavior, making it challenging to identify. Watch for frequent trips to the bathroom after meals, evidence of purging (e.g., hidden food wrappers), or unusual tooth erosion that may indicate excessive vomiting.

Creating a Safe and Supportive Environment

When approaching the topic of eating disorders with your teenager, it's crucial to create a safe and supportive environment. Choose a quiet and comfortable setting where both of you can have an open conversation. Avoid judgmental or accusatory language and focus on expressing your concern and love.

Choosing the Right Words

The language you use when discussing eating disorders can greatly impact your teenager's response. Use phrases that emphasize the importance of health, self-acceptance, and well-being. Encourage your teenager to share their feelings and validate their experiences to build trust and understanding.

Emphasizing the Importance of Professional Help

While having a supportive family environment is valuable, it's essential to emphasize the significance of seeking professional help for eating disorders. Mention the role of medical experts, therapists, and nutritionists in providing specialized care. Offer to assist your teenager in finding a qualified healthcare professional who can guide them through their recovery journey.

Providing Educational Resources

At MUIR DIABLO OCCUPATIONAL MEDICINE, we understand the value of comprehensive education when it comes to eating disorders. We have curated a list of resources on our website that can help you and your teenager gain a deeper understanding of the causes, effects, and treatment options available. Take advantage of these resources to build a knowledgeable support system.


Open communication about eating disorders is crucial in helping your teenager overcome these challenges. By recognizing the signs, creating a safe environment, using appropriate language, emphasizing professional help, and providing educational resources, you can ensure that your teenager feels supported and understood. Remember, your actions as a parent hold significant influence over your child's well-being, so make the effort to have these important conversations.

Tom Givan
¡Excelente artículo! Es vital hablar abierta y honestamente sobre los trastornos alimenticios con nuestros adolescentes. 👍👪
Oct 17, 2023