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date: 15 April 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter focuses on eating disorders and eating problems that occur in middle childhood. Three main sections cover the main developmental challenges of middle childhood, including the impact of pubertal and cognitive maturation and the role of family and peer environment; the expression and treatment of anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and variants of these eating disorders in this age group; and then the atypical eating problems that commonly present or become clinically concerning in this developmental period, such as selective eating, food avoidance disorders, and food and swallowing phobias. The evidence base for work with this age group is limited, particularly for the atypical eating problems. Instead, the chapter is illustrated throughout with clinical vignettes. There is an urgent need to better characterize the feeding and eating problems arising in childhood, with consequent implications for clinical management, and to better understand the continuities and discontinuities between eating difficulties across the lifespan.

Keywords: Eating disorders, childhood, developmental, atypical eating disorders, feeding disorders

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