Information for the public

What should happen next?

Being referred for specialist treatment

If your GP thinks you may have an eating disorder they should arrange an appointment for you to see a professional who specialises in eating disorders. This will usually be at an eating disorder clinic or centre in your area. If you are under 18 you should be seen at a clinic for children and young people.

There are lots of different signs that can point to an eating disorder. Your GP should think about everything that is affecting you when deciding whether to refer you for treatment, and not make a decision based on one particular problem (such as a low BMI).

Planning your support and treatment

It is common for eating disorders to go together with conditions like depression, anxiety, self-harm, alcohol or substance misuse, or obsessive-compulsive disorder. Sometimes an eating disorder is picked up when people are having care for one of these other conditions. The healthcare professionals you are seeing should explore if you need any other support, so that all your needs can be included in your treatment plan. You can find out more about treating other conditions alongside an eating disorder in managing other conditions.

What treatments are there?

Treatment usually involves psychological therapy, also known as talking therapy. There is more information about the different types of therapy recommended in the separate treatment sections. You should also have tests and regular checks of your physical health (see looking after your physical health).

You shouldn't be offered medicine on its own for your eating disorder.

Treatments for children and young people

Treatments are described in separate sections for adults and for children and young people.