Hospital admissions for girls aged 16 and under with anorexia rose by 80 per cent over the decade to mid-2007, new statistics from the UK show. The figures for 2006-2007 range from141 admissions for 15 year olds to five admissions for under-10s. Relatively few boys suffer from anorexia: there were 306 hospital admissions among boys under 16 during the decade.

Authorities are being cautious interpreting the figures — there may be more admissions but not a higher incidence in the community — but they are in line with rises in other bad statistics for British youngsters. In 2007 there were 6707 under-18s in alcohol treatment programmes (up from 4781 in 2006) and 953 of those were 12- to 14-year-olds (up from 592 in 2006). Young girls accounted for just under 60 per cent of all under-age hospital admissions for alcohol in 2007. Use of illegal drugs also put more than 1200 under-16s in hospital in 2006/2007.

Hospital admissions are just the tip of the iceberg representing teenagers who abuse their bodies. ~ Daily Telegraph, Feb 17


Carolyn Moynihan

Carolyn Moynihan is the former deputy editor of MercatorNet