Anorexia can be difficult to understand. Use the following approaches to help someone who suffers from this eating disorder.
- Step 1: Offer support and friendship. Leave treatment to a professional counselor who is trained to deal with eating disorders. With patience and professional help, the anorexic can recover and lead a normal life.
- FACT: About 8 percent of female middle and high school students have problems with eating disorders, according to a study.
- Step 2: If they refuse to seek help, don't push. Let them know that you are there for them if they ever want to talk.
- Step 3: Suggest they seek professional help. Offer to help them find a doctor, and to accompany them to the appointment.
- TIP: Pushing food on an anorexic person may only increase their anxiety.
- Step 4: Talk to them about your concerns. Avoid making judgments – anorexia may make you angry or uncomfortable, but it doesn't help the anorexic to hear these views.
- Step 5: Accept that anorexia can't be fixed overnight. Avoid simple solutions, such as trying to feed the person, telling them they're too thin, or saying, "You just need to eat."