Eating disorders develop over a long period of time. Although there are signs an symptoms that with awareness, knowledge and education can be recognised, parents and guardians of young people face a hard task to spot the early warning signs. 

To parents, adolescence means their child is growing up, moving into adulthood. However, to the child, adolescence equates to harrowing and sometimes despairing experiences. 

Adolescence for the young person means: 

* discovering themselves

* becoming independent

* experiencing physical changes

* confusion, fear and stress

* pressure from society's norms