Learn the Signs

Early detection and intervention are key factors in recovery from eating disorders. School professionals can help implement early intervention through awareness of these common eating disorder behaviors and characteristics:

  • Noticeable weight loss or extreme thinness
  • Finding excuses to skip lunch
  • Unusual eating behaviors - ritualistic eating; Unusual concern about school performance - earned grades are never "good enough"
  • Oversensitivity to criticism

  • Unusual concern over change in routine - not flexible or adaptable
  • Tendency to be a perfectionist
  • Closed communication; usually very proper, polite; may appear tense or too animated.
  • Unusual concern about appearance; very neat, "not a hair out of place"
  • Withdrawal from friends and activities; an unusual immersion in an activity to the exclusion of other activities"
  • Amenorrhea (absence of menstrual cycle)
  • Unusual, compulsive behaviors, particularly having to do with food
  • Mood swings
  • Very controlled behavior; able to hide feelings
  • Conversation largely about food and weight
  • Intolerance of others
  • Low self-esteem (may not be initially apparent)



Related Story: Things Coaches Can Do

Encourage others to make peace with their size and shape, share information about the top warning signs. Print our flyer for school health fairs and special events.

Learn More About the Laureate Eating Disorders Program

Please call us with questions at 918-491-3702. If you’re outside the Tulsa metro area, please call 800-322-5173. There is no cost for the screening call and no obligation to proceed with treatment.