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Hatton asked...

Struggling with body image.

Tags: diet

My daughter is 22, successful, good-looking and has an amazing personality. However, she has struggled with her body image from practically starving herself to binge eating and excessive exercise. She keeps so busy to stop herself thinking about her body and feels guilty whenever she does not meet her calorie/exercise targets even though she enjoys her food.

She is curvy but not overweight. She has such a bright future if she can deal with her issues now. Please can you help.

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The answer

From your description of symptoms; it would appear that your daughter has an eating and body image difficulty which she has been coping with for some years.

The first step is for her to recognise that she has a problem and for your daughter to ask for help. This is a big step for her to admit defeat and will be made easier with your support and guidance. Sometimes these behaviours can be triggered by social media, peer pressures or a significant life event.

To formerly diagnose whether this is an eating disorder, your daughter should see her GP who may discuss her weight loss, daily dietary and exercise routine and any concerns she may be experiencing.

Ongoing treatment involves support from a specialist counsellor, dietician, nurse, GP and also a psychiatrist. Most treatment can be offered as an outpatient although occasionally some people have to be admitted for intense therapy. There is also support available for family members to understand and cope with your daughter’s body image and self-esteem.

Answered by Health at Hand nurses.

 

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