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Your Healthy Family: Spotting eating disorders early in children

Posted at 3:22 PM, Feb 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-28 17:22:46-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — In this Your Healthy Family, this week is National Eating Disorder Awareness Week. Calls to a national hotline more than doubled during the pandemic and many of these disorders first present during adolescence.

In response, doctors and experts at Children's Hospital Colorado, want the community to know that help is available for kids.

Shelten, is an ambassador for Children's Hospital Colorado who we met up with in Colorado Springs. Shelton says he developed an eating disorder during the pandemic that caused him to suffer from depression. He said he also didn't have much contact with his friends. He hit rock-bottom when he faced a depletion of nutrition that was so bad it forced his mother to call an ambulance.

Shelton says about his recovery with the help of those at Children’s Hospital, "They were really supportive of me. They didn't ask questions, they were just ready to support me whatever I was going through. Also, my coaches were very supportive just being there for me and helping me become a better person. I also now want to help people with mental health in general and just encourage them to break the stigma, that mental health isn't something that should be kept in the dark."

Shelton also says It took him three weeks to become stable at Children's.

There are many signs parents can watch out for in their children that can be early warning signs of an eating disorder. Such as, excessive weight loss, or gain. Also look for unusual eating habits, hair loss, and even cavities.

If you're having concerns about the your child's health for any reason make sure to follow up with your doctor.

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