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Special Issue "Eating Disorders and Associated Disorders in Adolescents"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Global Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2021) | Viewed by 7951

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Karin Waldherr
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
FernFH - Distance Learning University of Applied Sciences, Ferdinand Porsche Ring 3, 2700 Wiener Neustadt, Austria
Interests: public health; health promotion; prevention and treatment of eating disorders and associated disorders; E-Mental-Health; evaluation and implementation research
Prof. Dr. C. Barr Taylor
E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
1.Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA
2.Center for m²Health, Palo Alto University, Palo Alto, CA 94304, USA
Interests: online preventive and clinical interventions for eating disorders; technology; public health; screening
Prof. Dr. Andreas Karwautz
E-Mail Website
Assistant Guest Editor
Medical University of Vienna, Department of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, Eating Disorders Unit, Waehringer Guertel 18-20, 1090 Vienna, Austria
Interests: clinics; course; etiology; treatment; anorexia nervosa; bulimia nervosa; childhood eating

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Eating disorders (anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, other specified feeding and eating disorders, unspecified feeding and eating disorders) in their full and subclinical manifestations are serious, potentially life-threatening, mental illnesses. They can affect people of all genders, socioeconomic backgrounds, and age groups across the globe. However, the peak onset is during the vulnerable life period of adolescence, and often, they take a severe and protracted course. Eating disorders are associated with other psychiatric (e.g., depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder) and medical (e.g., obesity, type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases) comorbidities. Previous research has identified multiple interacting risks contributing to the development of eating disorders, including biological, psychological, and sociocultural factors. In view of the severe and long-lasting sequelae of eating disorders and their impact on the quality of life both of sufferers and their relatives, they are a serious public health issue.

This Special Issue titled “Eating Disorders and Associated Disorders in Adolescents” in International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (IJERPH) seeks original papers, reviews, and meta-analyses dealing with the epidemiology, etiology, prevention, treatment, course, and outcome, as well as the economic burden, of eating disorders and associated disorders in adolescents. We especially encourage the submission of papers dealing with environmental risk factors and public health approaches to prevention targeting the environment.

If you consider to submit a review paper (systematic review or meta-analysis) we kindly ask you to submit an abstract at least one month before the submission deadline for the special issue. All papers will be subjected to a peer-review process.

Dr. Karin Waldherr
Prof. Dr. C. Barr Taylor
Prof. Dr. Andreas Karwautz
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2500 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • eating disorders
  • adolescents
  • risk factors
  • prevention
  • treatment
  • public health
  • environment

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Article
Body-Related Attitudes, Personality, and Identity in Female Adolescents with Anorexia Nervosa or Other Mental Disorders
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2022, 19(7), 4316; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19074316 - 04 Apr 2022
Viewed by 588
Abstract
The psychological integration of body-related attitudes (BodyRA) is a critical developmental task in adolescence. Adolescents must adapt to their changing body image and body satisfaction. For young people, BodyRA (body dissatisfaction, bulimia, and drive for thinness) are connected to insecurities, which can disturb [...] Read more.
The psychological integration of body-related attitudes (BodyRA) is a critical developmental task in adolescence. Adolescents must adapt to their changing body image and body satisfaction. For young people, BodyRA (body dissatisfaction, bulimia, and drive for thinness) are connected to insecurities, which can disturb identity integration and personality development. Our goal was to evaluate the importance of BodyRA also for other mental disorders other than anorexia nervosa (AN), and the association between BodyRA with temperament and personality traits and identity diffusion. Data for the period of 2012 to 2019 were retrospectively analyzed from a convenience sample of patients in a child and adolescent psychiatric hospital (n = 114). The patients were 13 to 17 years of age and had a BMI of 11.9–36.1 kg/m2. As expected, BodyRA were found to be more pronounced in AN, as well as in borderline personality disorder (BPD), depression (DD), and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). BodyRA correlated significantly with internalizing problems in patients with DD (r = 0.428–0.565, p < 0.01) and BPD (r = 0.680, p < 0.01) as well as with BMI (r = 0.404, p < 0.01) in patients with DD. Moreover, we detected significant correlations with impaired identity development in patients with DD (r = 0.482–0.565, p < 0.01) and BPD (r = 0.681–0.703, p < 0.01). BodyRA also correlated significantly with the personality traits of harm avoidance (r = 0.377–0.541, p < 0.01) and self-directedness (r = −0.537–−0.635, p < 0.01) in DD. These personality traits and bulimia were used as predictors for identity diffusion in the investigated disorders of this study. We conclude that BodyRA, harm avoidance and self-directedness are associated with identity development in adolescent females with mental disorders. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Eating Disorders and Associated Disorders in Adolescents)
Article
Exploring Social Media Recruitment Strategies and Preliminary Acceptability of an mHealth Tool for Teens with Eating Disorders
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(15), 7979; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18157979 - 28 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1986
Abstract
(1) Background: The current study leveraged social media to connect with teens with EDs to identify population specific characteristics and to gather feedback on an mHealth intervention. (2) Methods: We recruited teens with EDs from social media in two phases: (1) Discovery Group, [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The current study leveraged social media to connect with teens with EDs to identify population specific characteristics and to gather feedback on an mHealth intervention. (2) Methods: We recruited teens with EDs from social media in two phases: (1) Discovery Group, (2) Testing Group. The Discovery Group (n = 14) participants were recruited from Facebook/Instagram and were asked to review the app for up to one week and provide qualitative feedback. After incorporating feedback from the Discovery Group, we refined our social media outreach methods to connect with 30 teens with EDs to pilot this mobile app. Recruitment from a variety of platforms on social media was successful, with the majority of enrolled participants in the Testing Group coming from Snapchat (60%) and a large percentage of participants belonging to gender and sexual minority groups (63%). (3) Results: Participants from both groups experienced extremely high rates of depression (100% Discovery, 90% Testing) and/or anxiety symptoms (100% Discovery, 93% Testing) in addition to ED symptoms, and noted this as a possible barrier to app engagement. (4) Conclusion: Use of social media for recruitment of teens with EDs is feasible and may connect with groups who may be more difficult to reach using traditional recruitment methods. Among the Discovery Group there was high acceptability of and interest in an app to support ED recovery, and characteristics of both groups demonstrated need for support in other mental health domains. Future studies should evaluate the preliminary efficacy of such tools among teens to determine the effects of such interventions on ED symptoms and other mental health outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Eating Disorders and Associated Disorders in Adolescents)
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Article
Does a Skills Intervention for Parents Have a Positive Impact on Adolescents’ Anorexia Nervosa Outcome? Answers from a Quasi-Randomised Feasibility Trial of SUCCEAT
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(9), 4656; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18094656 - 27 Apr 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1282
Abstract
Skills trainings for caregivers of patients with anorexia nervosa (AN) have been proven to be effective in improving caregiver skills and reducing caregivers’ psychopathology. The effects on patients, especially adolescents, are largely unknown. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness [...] Read more.
Skills trainings for caregivers of patients with anorexia nervosa (AN) have been proven to be effective in improving caregiver skills and reducing caregivers’ psychopathology. The effects on patients, especially adolescents, are largely unknown. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a caregivers’ skills training program (Supporting Carers of Children and Adolescents with Eating Disorders in Austria, SUCCEAT, workshop or online version) on adolescents with AN delivered as workshops (WS) or online (ONL). Outcomes are Body-Mass-Index (BMI) percentile, eating psychopathology (Eating Disorder Examination, EDE), attitudinal and behavioural dimensions of eating disorders (Eating Disorder Inventory-2), motivation to change (AN Stages of Change Questionnaire), emotional and behavioural problems (Youth Self-Report) and quality of life (KINDL). All outcome variables significantly improved across both SUCCEAT groups (WS and ONL) and were sustained at 12-month follow-up. The online and workshop delivery of SUCCEAT were equally effective. Most effect sizes were in the medium-to-high range. Full or partial remission was observed in 72% (WS) and 87% (ONL) of patients. Caregiver skills trainings, either delivered as workshops or online modules, are highly recommended to complement treatment as usual. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Eating Disorders and Associated Disorders in Adolescents)
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Article
Impact of COVID-19 Confinement on Adolescent Patients with Anorexia Nervosa: A Qualitative Interview Study Involving Adolescents and Parents
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(8), 4251; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18084251 - 16 Apr 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2250
Abstract
COVID-19-related restrictions may have a serious impact on patients with eating disorders. We conducted semistructured interviews with female adolescent patients with anorexia nervosa (AN) (n = 13, 13–18 years) currently receiving inpatient or outpatient treatment and their parents (n = 10). [...] Read more.
COVID-19-related restrictions may have a serious impact on patients with eating disorders. We conducted semistructured interviews with female adolescent patients with anorexia nervosa (AN) (n = 13, 13–18 years) currently receiving inpatient or outpatient treatment and their parents (n = 10). We asked for their experiences during COVID-19 confinement regarding everyday life, AN symptoms, and treatment. We used thematic analysis to interpret the data. The main themes identified from the patients’ interviews involved restrictions of personal freedom (i.e., leading to tension between patients and family members, reduced motivation to work on recovery), interruption of the treatment routine (emerging risks through self-monitored weight, challenges/opportunities of teletherapy), changes in AN symptoms (more exposure to triggering situations), COVID-19-related fears, and compulsions but also potential opportunities (less stress, better family relationships). The parents discussed changes in daily routines as negative (challenges in maintaining day structures) and positive (more family time, “slowing down”). They expressed reservations about reduced outpatient monitoring and increased teletherapy and discussed challenges in keeping contact with the child and clinicians during inpatient treatment. Moreover, the parents discussed deteriorations and improvements in the patients’ psychopathology. Clinical implications from these in-depth insights include the importance of strengthening communication between changing staff cohorts, patients, and parents; motivational work; and joint weight monitoring with the therapist. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Eating Disorders and Associated Disorders in Adolescents)
Article
Risk and Protective Factors of Disordered Eating in Adolescents Based on Gender and Body Mass Index
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(24), 9238; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17249238 - 10 Dec 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1194
Abstract
The current study aimed to identify potential psychosocial risk and protective factors contributing to eating disorders in adolescents, and observe any differences between genders and Body Mass Index (BMI) categories. A cross-sectional survey was carried out with a total of 2605 (1063 male) [...] Read more.
The current study aimed to identify potential psychosocial risk and protective factors contributing to eating disorders in adolescents, and observe any differences between genders and Body Mass Index (BMI) categories. A cross-sectional survey was carried out with a total of 2605 (1063 male) adolescents, who were assessed for disordered eating, body-image satisfaction and investment, appearance/weight-related anxiety, situational dysphoria, media influences, self-esteem, and body appreciation. The results revealed that weight/appearance-related anxiety and situational dysphoria were the most significant risk factors for both genders. Pressures from the media posed a significant risk only for males and the internalization of the thin ideal only for females; however, the internalization of the athletic ideal did not pose as a significant risk factor. Compared to gender, these risk factors did not differ based on BMI. Additionally, body appreciation was found to be a robust protective factor (unlike global self-esteem) for both genders, and across all BMI groups. The findings indicate that the most significant risk and protective factors of eating disorders do not differ largely for male and female adolescents or different BMIs. Intervention and prevention programs would therefore benefit from the inclusion of exercises that reduce the constructs of weight/appearance-related anxiety and situational dysphoria, and promote body appreciation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Eating Disorders and Associated Disorders in Adolescents)
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