Think You Have an Eating Disorder? This Is How To Talk To Your Doctor About Your Eating Disorder

Eating disorders might be hard to talk about, or even to admit to yourself. If you know, or if you even suspect, you have an eating disorder, there is one person you should talk to: your health care provider.

Why It's Important

Maybe you think your eating disorder is not that bad, and you have it under control. Perhaps you haven't had any serious health scares yet, or previous check-ups didn't detect any abnormalities, so you think your problem is mild.

Please don't risk it; by the time you begin to feel it, or routine health care exams begin to detect it, a lot of damage can occur. Your doctor needs to do a more comprehensive health check than a routine annual physical to assess if you have any issues.

What Will Happen?

Your health care provider will listen to your concerns and ask you some questions about your habits. She may recommend additional tests or assessments to check your metabolism, bone density, and organs that might be at risk. Your provider will probably refer you to a specialist for a more comprehensive assessment and to discuss treatment.

Treatment will depend on the severity of your case. Treatment may involve therapy, nutritional counseling, medication, or exercise. You may also need treatment from your doctor for any physical issues that your eating disorder may have caused.

Go Prepared

Before you discuss your possible eating disorder, be prepared so that nerves don't cause you to draw a blank. Bring a list of questions with you. Your doctor won't mind; in fact, she'll probably be happy to see you're proactively seeking help.

You may want to write down a list of your symptoms and ask your doctor about those first. Question your doctor about tests you should have done and what kind of treatment she would typically recommend for your disorder. You may want to do some research before you go to help you think of any concerns you can discuss with your provider.

If you have a friend or family member who you can entrust with your condition, it is a good idea to tell him about it. Bring him with you when you talk to your health care provider. A loved one can lend moral support and may think of questions that didn't occur to you. It's also good to have a second set of ears take in the information the doctor gives you, and your friend can help you sort through it all after the office visit.

Sources: Winchester Hospital, Beating Eating Disorders

Photo: Pixabay

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