What is an eating disorder?

Eating disorders’ is a term used to describe a range of psychological disorders characterised by unusual eating habits. Eating disorders are more common in children and adults, but can develop at any age. It is normal for someone to be unaware or in denial that they have an eating disorder. Take a look at the types of eating disorders we treat.

Eating disorders are complex mental illnesses and are often diagnosed with other mental health problems, creating a dual diagnosis. Our mental health nurses and psychologists are trained to help a child or adult with an eating disorder manage a dual diagnosis.

Take a look at the common mental health problems associated with eating disorders.

Taking the first step.

We encourage that you talk with your child to see if they recognise or understand their eating behaviours. It can be scary for parents to bring up the subject, especially if it is the first time you express these concerns to them. However, the first step to recovery takes courage and openness from both parent and child. At The Bridge we aim to help patients develop a positive mental and physical well being, and become resilient to challenges. We encourage patients to develop a healthy relationship to food, their body and their mind.

It may be useful to work through this checklist with them, even if you are unsure of all of the answers. Do you find that your child:

If you said 'yes' to one or more, give our knowledgeable and approachable team a call on 0161 820 8010, or fill out our short enquiry form.

Having an open conversation with your child.

Many children and adults with an eating disorder can feel trapped, especially if their symptoms do not fit all the boxes of one specific disorder or if they have any other mental health problem. It is usual for children and adults to deny their behaviour, and this is usually due to feelings of guilt or embarrassment. Denial could also stem from a genuine lack of self-awareness and misguided body perception. Keeping calm, empathetic and open minded during these conversations with your child is crucial for the first step of recovery and seeking help.

When your child is ready to ask for support, it is crucial to act quickly and get professional help immediately without having to go on a waiting list. Eating disorders are best treated when intervention is as early as possible. At The Bridge, we provide patients with immediate access to a multidisciplinary, patient-centred service.


The recent NICE guidelines (a national provider of guidance and advice to healthcare services) state that if an eating disorder is suspected after an initial assessment, the child should be referred immediately to a community-based, age-appropriate eating disorder service for further assessment or treatment. Our clinic is community-based, offers tailored age-appropriate treatment that is immediately accessible without the use of waiting lists.

At The Bridge, our therapy is evidence-based and focused on the individual needs of our patients. We are a multidisciplinary team of psychologists, family therapists, dietitians, mental health nurses and other health based professionals. Crucially, we are results-focused and achieve the best possible results for our patients.

What to do in a crisis

How do I know if my child is in a crisis?

A crisis is when your childs physical or mental health puts them at a serious risk of harm.

For our services we deem a serious risk of harm to include a BMI under 14.5, no food intake for more than a week or an attempt at suicide in the last month.


What to do if your child is in a crisis?

If you don’t feel you can keep your child safe at this moment in time, SEEK IMMEDIATE HELP.

What help to get in a crisis?

The Bridge Service does not provide people with services where there is an immediate risk of significant harm.

If you need to speak to someone immediately because your child is at risk of significant harm, please contact:

If your child is not at a significant risk of immediate harm we can work with them.

How do I contact you?

We can get you an immediate assessment and decide which treatment option would be best for your loved one.

Book a visit, or give us a call on 0161 820 80101.

Alternatively, you can reach us through this form.

Name: Phone number: Email address: Enquiry:


“The support I received throughout every stage of my treatment was incredible. I always had someone on hand to help.”Marta

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Our promises

We make the following six promises to all our patients.

Our values

Holistic and patient centred

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We believe in continuously providing holistic, patient-centred treatments which promote physical and mental wellbeing to increase resilience. The needs and wellbeing of patients is at the centre of everything we do. We are passionate about helping people and their families achieve their goals by providing them with patient-centred therapy that is passionate, caring and knowledgeable. We are passionate about sharing our knowledge to help educate patients, families and the wider public about eating disorders.

Results based

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We believe in providing patients with evidence-based treatments to enable recovery of their eating disorder. We are committed to providing results-focused practice to ensure we deliver patients with the goals they want to achieve. Importantly, we believe results are best achieved with an educative approach and we work with our patients to achieve their goals together. We also believe that follow up after treatment is essential to ensure patients’ needs are being met and that their results are maximised.

Promoting physical and mental wellbeing

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We believe in helping patients develop a healthy relationship to food, and their body. Our service enables patients to set their own feeding goals in order to achieve a healthy weight and independently manage meals. We are passionate about helping patients’ understanding of disordered eating, and promoting mental wellness in order to tackle the behaviour.

Accessible and approachable

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We believe our services should be approachable and accessible. We give people the best chances of recovery by providing them with early access to assessments and interventions that are provided by approachable staff in an outpatient setting.

Immediate access to a specialist team

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We believe to maximise people’s recovery we should provide them with immediate access and to our specialist multidisciplinary team of professionals that will work with them holistically to achieve the best possible results for patients and families.

Affordable service

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We believe that anyone should be able to access immediate treatment for an eating disorder, regardless of their financial situation. Our treatment is priced as a total care package that is agreed with each client, tailored to the individual with a flexible pricing policy. We believe in offering finance to people who may benefit from this.