Posts Tagged ‘Anorexia’

Parents Failing to Protect their Young Children from Porn

December 9, 2012

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The internet has made the job of parents a great deal harder:

More than four in ten parents say that their children have been exposed to internet porn, an official survey reveals.

Almost a third say their sons or daughters have received sexually explicit emails or texts and a quarter say they have been bullied online or on their phones.

Many others have been exposed to websites promoting anorexia, self-harm and even suicide.

The frightening insight is contained in a round-up of responses to a Department for Education consultation on parental internet controls obtained by this paper.

Click on the link to read A Case of Parenting at It’s Worst

Click on the link to read The Most Popular Lies that Parents Tell their Children

Click on the link to read Dad’s Letter to 13-Year Old Son after Discovering he had been Downloading from Porn Sites

Click on the link to read A Parent that Means Well Doesn’t Always Do Well

Click on the link to read A Joke at the Expense of Your Own Child

 

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Our Young Children Shouldn’t Even Know What a Diet Is?

November 28, 2012

Message: Negative imagery painted with words like these are looked at by 500,000 people per year, a study has found

Our generation took body consciousness to a whole new level, with quite devastating results. We were taught to judge others not by the breadth of their character but by the size and shape of their bodies. It saddens me that this obsessive desire to look a certain way has seemingly overridden the desire of being a good person, resisting to gossip, being truthful and loyal to the people around us and acting with integrity. We live in a society where people would sell their souls for a preferred dress size and confidence is based on form and complexion over character development.

What has this philosophy provided us with?

Depression, peer pressure, cosmetic surgery addiction, diet crazes, suicide, bullying, anorexia and bulimia.

And what are we doing about it?

Passing the sickness on to our very young:

The internet is awash with pro-anorexia websites which thousands of girls – some as young as six – are using to compete against each other in deadly starvation games, a study has found.

More than 500 of these ‘gruesome’ sites exist and encourage vulnerable young women to barely eat and just drink coffee, smoke and take diet pills to look like a ‘goddess’.

Using the phrase ‘starving for perfection’ they say users should eat no more than 500 calories a day – the recommended level is 2,000 for women and 2,500 for men.

They also include ‘thinspiration’ sections with images of super-slim women and in the last year 500,000 girls have admitted visiting them, and one in five were aged between six and 11.

University Campus Suffolk in Ipswich has carried out research into the issue and found than many of these websites are set up by people with anorexia and other eating disorders.

‘It starts with an individual who wants to share their experience and as they get a following they set themselves up as almost Goddess-like,’ researcher Dr Emma Bond, senior lecturer in childhood and youth studies said.

‘When I started this research last January I came across a website set up by a girl who was disgusted with herself because she had put on a few pounds at Christmas. She planned to fast for three days and regain control.

‘In under two hours, she had 36 followers saying things like “You’re wonderful, you’re an inspiration to me, I’m only fasting because of you”.’

Some of the people are even posting pictures of themselves in very few clothes on thousands of blogs and on social media like Twitter.

Official figures show that one in 200 women and one in 2,000 men have anorexia – which means they starve themselves or exercise excessively to stay slim – although some experts believe the true number is much higher.

Around eight per cent of women and one per cent of men develop bulimia at some point. They binge on excessive amounts of food then make themselves sick or use laxatives to stop gaining weight.

Many sufferers of eating disorders hide their problem from family and friends by pretending they have already eaten to avoid meals and wearing baggy clothes to conceal their skeletal shape.

Doctors believe that anorexia or bulimia is more common in people who are perfectionists, tend to worry a lot or are often depressed.

Click on the link to read Charity Pays for Teen’s Plastic Surgery to Help Stop Bullying

Click on the link to read Most People Think This Woman is Fat

Click on the link to read It’s Time to Change the Culture of the Classroom

Click on the link to read Sparing Young Children the Affliction of Body Image

It’s Time to Change the Culture of the Classroom

January 5, 2012

I have a confession to make. As driven as I am to help my students master the curriculum, there is something more important to me than their academic achievement. I would not be even remotely satisfied if my students were at or above the national standard in numeracy and literacy if they also happened to be bullying, bullied or struggling to cope with everyday life. Conversely, if my students were below national standards but were functioning well and getting along with each other, I would be far more satisfied.

That’s not to say that I don’t understand that a vital function of my job is to educate. I know that all too well. It’s just that I wont let that distract me from my mission in setting up a classroom that is caring, friendly and allows each child to express themselves in their own unique way.

I am sick and tired of reading about how bullying is causing kids as young as 7 to diet. It infuriates me that so little is done by teachers to protect young kids from this stigma and prevent bullies from causing distress. I know what I am claiming will be seen as a gross generalisation, but how many teachers are prepared to overlook a hurtful comment about weight or ignore the activity by the “in-crowd?”

No classroom should have an “in-crowd”. In-groups cannot exist without a readily defined “out-group”. It is a teacher’s job to foster a classroom environment without such divisions. It is more important than any equation or scientific experiment.

We Are Looking at the Anorexia Generation

December 30, 2011

I thought we had enough awareness of anorexia and such diseases long ago to have made inroads in the prevention of this debilitating and tragic condition. It seems unacceptable that rates of anorexia in children have risen. I think that it is partially due to the perception that if you look a certain way you feel a certain way. Weight must only ever be seen to be an issue of health when it comes to children. It saddens me that children who have diverse skills and talents feel worthless because they don’t match up to the often unattainable physical attributes flaunted by the media.

KIDS should not have a care in the world – particularly about how skinny they look. But a shocking report yesterday revealed hundreds of children are being treated in hospitals for anorexia every year.

Two six-year-olds and four seven-year-olds were referred for life-saving care in one area alone. Horrifyingly, one child who got help was just three.

Health bosses yesterday warned the problem was the tip of the iceberg and only one in five young sufferers are having treatment. They also highlighted the growing pressures on children to be skinny, particularly from the celebrities they idolise.

Child psychiatrist Dr Malcolm Bourne said: “I estimate we only deal with 20% of the children who suffer from eating disorders. Long term eating disorders have the worst death rates in child mental health.

“Around 5% die from them eventually, people can be very resistant to treatment. There is no straight forward fix.”

Dr Dasha Nicholls, an adolescent expert, added: “For a minority of children it may be the start of a severe and enduring illness, with death rates comparable to some forms of leukaemia.”

The report yesterday showed 125 children under 18 were treated for anorexia or bulimia by the East Lancashire Child and Adolescent Service since 2007. The majority of those – 109 – were aged 12 to 16.

But many were under 10 including the three-year-old, who was helped earlier this year. Overall, 102 girls and 23 boys were treated by the service.

Childhood Eating Disorders on the Rise

November 8, 2011

I was hoping that since there hasn’t been a great deal of coverage about childhood eating disorders recently, that the numbers suffering this serious disease had dwindled.

It turns out that I was mistaken:

Doctors at the Westmead Children’s Hospital in NSW have told the ABC that child admissions for eating disorders, particularly anorexia, have tripled in the past decade.

Children as young as eight are being admitted, some of whose lives are at risk.

Like other articles on childhood anorexia, fingers are pointed to the media when it comes to metering out the blame:

The head of the hospital’s adolescent medicine department, Susan Towns, suspects the media is to blame.

“Media portrayal can affect the development of body image in young people and this can happen at a stage and an age where children and adolescents aren’t able to conceptualise things in a complex and abstract way and they can take these messages in a very concrete way,” she said.

Whilst I don’t like blaming the media for everything.  I couldn’t help but reflect on the damning study conducted in Fiji, where they found that within three years of introducing television cases of eating disorders among children rose significantly.

The Harvard Medical School visited Fiji to evaluate the effect of the introduction of television on body satisfaction and disordered eating in adolescent girls.

In 1995, television arrived and within three years the percentage of girls demonstrating body dissatisfaction rose from 12.7 per cent to 29.2 per cent.

Dieting among teenagers who watched TV increased dramatically to two in every three girls and the rate of self-induced vomiting leapt from zero to 11.3 per cent.

 


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