Integrated Family Community Services 3370 South Irving Street, Englewood, CO 80110-1816 Ph: 303-789-0501

Worried For Your Teen? 4 Signs Of An Eating Disorder

There are issues that your teen faces that you might not understand or even know about. It’s normal for teens not to want to talk to their parents about health concerns or what is going on in school and with friends. That’s why it’s important for you to recognize the signs that something might be wrong, such as an eating disorder. Once you see signs that are there, then you can get the help that is needed for your teen.

Odd Rituals

One of the early signs of an eating disorder is different ways of eating. The teen might cut food into smaller pieces to not eat as much but to make it look like it’s the same amount. Another common ritual is to put food in patterns so that it can be eaten a certain way. You might notice that the teen only eats a certain kind of food. These are often signs of anorexia, a condition where the teen doesn’t eat enough to support the body.

More Liquids

The teen might think that drinking more liquids or using more condiments is alright, but this isn’t healthy for the body. Pay attention to what the teen drinks, such as water or soft drinks. If the teen appears to be drinking beverages to stay awake, then there might be a test or an issue at school that the teen wants to stay awake for in order to complete. They also could be using the caffeine to stay awake if they’re not providing their body with enough nutrients. A recovery center, such as Center for Change, can sometimes be a good resource in this situation as there are counselors and others who can talk to the teen about issues that are present.

Weighty Issues

When you see that the teen is concerned about the weight and trying to look good for friends or trying to wear new clothes that are smaller, it’s a sign that there is an eating disorder. There could be an obsession with eating only healthy foods or exercising more than eating. Repeatedly weighing themselves is another sign that you want to pay attention to as this could indicate that the teen is concerned about numbers.


Your teen should be talking to people, even if it’s a few close friends. When the teen begins to stay quiet and refrain from talking to family and friends, it can become an issue with eating and the body. The disorder that is present takes over the life and the daily habits, leading to complete isolation.

Teens often focus on eating and the way that they look over anything else at times. There could be people at school who are bullying the teen about weight or other issues with looks. This is a time when you want to sit back and look at the little clues that signal a disorder so that you can get help.


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