by: Sarah Cody
GUILDFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — “Kids and adolescents are still really struggling. The world is still really struggling,” says Rebekah Bardwell Doweyko of Walden Behavioral Care, an eating disorder clinic in Guilford.
She says problems with unhealthy eating patterns continue during this global pandemic.
“I think for a lot of people, an eating disorder is a maladaptive coping skill when folks feel like there’s something out of their control,” she says, noting that kids picked up on talk of dieting and shedding “the COVID-19” weight gain during isolation.
“They themselves can get wrapped up in those sorts of routines and hear that messaging,” she said.
They’re getting messages at home and oftentimes on social media where a focus on “appearances” is ever-present.
“What we know is that the dependency on likes releases dopamine which feels really good,” Bardwell Doweyko said. “And then more and more likes are needed to continue those feel-good feelings.”