Taking the next step on eating disorders

2 May 2019

In April, the ADA, in partnership with The National Eating Disorders Collaboration (NEDC), introduced the new Practitioner Guide and e-leaning module Open Your Mouth, which have been designed to educate ADA members on eating disorders and how to start a discussion on this condition with patients.

As part of the NEDC and ADA partnership, new resources, which help you take the next step in treating patients with suspected or confirmed eating disorders, have been created comprised of two patient-directed fact sheets and a practitioner decision-support tool. These are now available online for member use at Your Dental Health > Resources for Professionals.

The fact sheets, Talking to your dentist and Protecting your oral health have been created with the intention of providing practitioners who engage in these often-difficult conversations with a handout to supply patients as a conversation follow up, or, where conversations have not been able to take place but the supply of this information to a patient may be beneficial.

These documents will provide patients with information on common oral signs and symptoms associated with eating disorders, oral health care tips during times of illness and recovery, and the importance of discussing their eating disorder with their dentist.

The decision-support tool has been designed to help members understand and follow their path of involvement in patient care. This document is also known as the KOALA tool because it is structured according to the acronym Know, Observe, Ask, Listen, Act. (For an illustration of this principle, go to News Bulletin Online (May 2019 issue). The online version includes hyperlinks which will lead you to the NEDC website for further reading.

We hope you find these materials will play a key role in assisting you in your care of patients where eating disorders are a concern.