Stories about: eating disorder

Reading to teach and heal: More books for 8-12 year olds

Middle-schooler reading book in winter

The holiday season is a time to reflect, find gratitude and show kindness, especially to those who may be struggling. It’s also a great time to escape the chaos and hunker down with a good book.

Why not do both?

Today, there are more and more books about children and teens coping with physical and mental health issues that help young readers empathize with these characters but also relate, especially if they’re faced with a similar condition. We’ve selected five books that will not only make great gifts for the kids on your list, but also will stay with them long after those holiday decorations are put away.

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5 things parents should know about eating disorders

Dr. Sara Formandirector of Boston Children’s Hospital’s Outpatient Eating Disorders Program and Dr. Tracy Richmonddirector of the PREP weight management program in Adolescent Medicine, share five things parents should know about eating disorders.

Kids don’t have to be really thin to have an eating disorder.

Not everyone with an eating disorder looks like he or she has an eating disorder. The condition is often hidden in secret habits or obsessions. For example, binge eating and bulimia — or binging and purging — are common eating disorders not necessarily associated with thinness.

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From eating disorders to obesity: The thin and thick of talking to your kids about their weight

I really don’t want my children to be overweight. I know this because I see the consequences every day in my practice, consequences like high blood pressure, impending diabetes, or poor self-esteem.

At the same time, I really, really don’t want my children to have an eating disorder. I know this because I had one.

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Talking to your kids about new developments in Demi Lovato’s hospitalization

Have you been following the story of teen pop sensation Demi Lovato? According to reports Lovato recently dropped off a world tour because of “physical and emotional issues,” but sources close to the singer say a recent break up caused her to engage in risky behavior like drinking, drug use, as well as previously reported instances of cutting and an eating disorder. At the moment all reports are speculation, but that doesn’t mean her legions of teen and tween fans won’t be exposed to the story and have to process the information that their child idol is dealing with some very adult issues.

Last week media expert Michael Rich, MD, MPH, answered questions about how to talk to young Demi fans about the media coverage surrounding her condition, but in light of new developments in her story it seems appropriate we re-run the piece. In addition to Rich’s commentary, please click on the following links for information parents can use when talking to their children about the challenges Demi is facing, as well as the type of treatment that’s available to her.

Eating disorders; cutting and self-harm; drinking; drug use

Michael Rich, MD, MPH

Q: My 6-year-old adores singer/actress Demi Lovato: She watches her Disney Channel show, “Sonny with a Chance” (with supervision), listens to her albums, and went to see Demi as her first concert this summer. But now the media are reporting that Demi just checked into rehab for “physical and emotional issues” that may involve an eating disorder and cutting issues. My daughter shares a playground and bus ride with older kids who are bound to be talking about this. There’s almost no way we can keep her away from the story, so how do I even begin explaining concepts like rehab, eating disorders and cutting to a 6-year-old?

Star-Struck-Down Dad in Boston, MA

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