National Eating Disorders Awareness Week 2013, taking place from February 24-March 2, is designed to increase awareness and education about eating disorders and body image issues. Ninety five percent of those who have eating disorders are between the ages of 12 and 25.
With the glamour of the Academy Awards on the minds of many teens it is fitting that this year, the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders is challenging teens to give themselves the “Freeedom To… The freedom to pass by a mirror or window of a shop without critiquing my looks, body shape or weight. The freedom to focus on health and wellness rather than the size of my jeans or the number on a scale. The freedom to exercise for enjoyment and health rather than by compulsion. Freedom to not participate in fat talk no matter how easy it is to get in the cycle. And, the freedom to help others who are suffering so that they can find their own freedom and live their life with positive body image, confidence, and passion.
There are many ways for teens and parents to get involved and make a real difference in the life of someone who is suffering from an eating disorder.
For teens who are concerned that they might have an eating disorder, the National Eating Disorder Association has partnered with Screening for Mental Health, Inc. to allow people to take free and anonymous self-assessments to determine if they might have an eating disorder. Teens in Los Angeles can take the anonymous screening at any of the following LA screening websites.
At the end of the screening the individual is provided with information and resources in the event they appear to have an eating disorder.