• To enhance your understanding of the experiences of young people with anorexia who receive hospital treatment
• To recognise the importance of addressing the emotional needs of young people with anorexia in addition to their physical needs
• To identify how you can improve your practice when caring for young people with anorexia
Anorexia nervosa is characterised by significantly low body weight, a fear of weight gain and persistent efforts to prevent the restoration of normal weight. It has potentially life-threatening physical and psychological complications, and many young people with anorexia present to hospital in a seriously compromised physical condition. While their physical symptoms require urgent treatment, addressing their emotional and psychological needs is equally important if they are to progress towards recovery. However, the conflicting thoughts common in anorexia mean that young people often feel highly ambivalent about treatment, which makes the disorder particularly challenging to treat.
This article details a literature review undertaken to explore the perceptions and experiences of young people who have received hospital treatment for anorexia, with the aim of offering children’s nurses insights into how they can optimally support these patients. The findings demonstrate the importance of listening to young people, treating them as individuals and understanding their experiences, in addition to addressing their physical health needs.
Nursing Children and Young People. doi: 10.7748/ncyp.2020.e1313Peer review
This article has been subject to open peer review and has been checked for plagiarism using automated softwareCorrespondence
Williams R, Smith M, Wright D (2020) Anorexia: a literature review of young people’s experiences of hospital treatment. Nursing Children and Young People. doi: 10.7748/ncyp.2020.e1313
Published online: 07 December 2020
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