May 2021

Eating Disorders and youth distress

Eating Disorders and youth distress

The statistics of the Dipartment of Child and Youth Neuropsychiatry and Psycopathology of the Hospital Santi Paolo e Carlo (director Prof.Dr. Alessandro Albizzati) and of its Eating Disorders in Developmental Age Service (director DR. Fortunata Cantini) showed that in pre-Covid19 time as man as 30% of young people in Milan suffered from disorders and in particular eating disorders, even within wealthy families and attending the best schools.

These disorders could be aspects deriving from descrepancy between the growing process tasks of the youths and the demands of the individualistic, competitive and performing environment that considers as the adolescent’s primary need to excel and be the best.

It often happens that many families, part and adapted to the philosophy proposed today’s social system, do not notice early indicators of malaise and thus miss the right time to prevent the appearance of serious and overt symptoms. In serious and urgent situations, the request for help is always explosive and the possibility of response in under seroius conditions does not allow lasting and conservative reflections. Only in a second phase of treatment can time be taken to reflect on the resources of the individual , the family and the context.

The Lombardy Region is trying to support projects for youth diastress. The Day Hospital for eating disorders, of the Hospital Santi Paolo e Carlo in Via Ovada, is a first response to the need, to detect the severity and set up a treatment program according to evidence-based medicine.

It consisist of an integrated and multidisciplinary team formed by experienced professionals actively working in a network with schools and many other environments which young people attend; we think it is necessary to spread the knowledge and training of this type of services in order to be able to offer appropriate treatment and set up ad-hoc therapies. It seems innovative bordering on revolutionary to learn that family-based interventions are essential to bring young people back to a healthy and social life balance.

Highlighting young people’s problems, recognizing early signs, knowing the structures that can help will make it possible to eradicate this silent evil that pervades our entire society.

As a Rotary Club we believe it is necessary to spread the kwoledge of these problems, and of their complexity and to sensitize civil society about them and the need to invest in public structures that operate in a specialized way in this field and to advertise their positive action.

To this end together with RC Nuremberg twinned with RC Milano Nord Ovest financing the purchase and installation of a mobile door in the Day Hospital of the Hospital Santi Paolo e Carlo, we facilited favored an interview to RAI Medicina 33 to broaden the sensitisation to this problem at national level and we invited Prof. Albizzati and Dr. Cantini to an Interclub with RC Porta Vercellina Milano to raise awareness among our members in order to expand the work and service to other clubs and to the District, as well as at national level.

Any support to the RC Milano Nord Ovest Service is welcome, as long as it shares the following goals:

  • Make society aware of the existence and incidence of these issues
  • Help parents and teachers understand any symptoms or signs of these disorders or general distress
  • Advertise the existence of specialized facilities on the subject and the importance to create more of them
  • Stimulate public investment to address these issues

Promoter of the Service: Pietro G. Bembo

Responsible for RC Milano Nord Ovest Projects Commission for the years 2019/2020 and 2020/2021.