Rise in eating disorders among teens

04 Jun 2015 UK SIC

This week the BBC reported that the number of hospital admissions across the UK for teenagers with eating disorders has nearly doubled in the last three years, according to figures from the NHS.

They increased from 959 13 to 19-year-olds in 2010/11 to 1,815 in 2013/14.

Lucie Russell, director of campaigns at YoungMinds, said:

“The reasons behind why more children and young people have eating disorders are complex but the situation is made much worse by the onslaught of pressure that they face to have the ‘perfect body’.”

The Royal College of Psychiatrists said much of the increase is down to social pressure made worse by online images. Spokesperson Dr Carolyn Nahman said

“We’re getting increasingly concerned about the pressure of social media. Literally with one click of a button very vulnerable young people are able to access 10,000 images of ‘perfect looking’ people which places them under a lot of pressure. Young people who look at these images often develop body image dissatisfaction, quite low self esteem, because they’re constantly comparing themselves to these perfect images. This is a risk factor for disordered eating and more serious eating disorders which can prove fatal.”

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