Departmental Bulletin Paper Health Support Provided by Yogo Teachers for Adolescent Female Students with a Thin Body Type

KANAIZUMI, Shiomi  ,  AOYAGI, Chiharu  ,  MATSUZAKI, Nanako  ,  KUROIWA, Hatsumi  ,  TOKITA, Eiko  ,  SHIMOYAMA, Kyoko  ,  TAMURA, Kyoko  ,  MARUYAMA, Yukie  ,  SAKOU, Keiko  ,  TAKAHASHI, Tamami  ,  ARAI, Yoshihiro

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Purpose: To clarify the realities and challenges involved in health support provided by yogo teachers to adolescentgirls who have a thin body type.Methods: A semi-structured interview survey was conducted with yogo teachers at a Japanese high schoolwith experience of providing health support to thin adolescent female students and the results of the surveywere subjected to qualitative analysis.Results: With regard to health support provided by yogo teachers, the results of analysis found that the actualsituation consisted of the five categories of 【sharing information throughout the school organization toinvestigate methods of support】,【 realizing studentsʼ situations through the provision of individual support】,【referring students and parents to specialist agencies】,【investigating collaborations with parents with studentsʼ consent】, and 【carrying out prevention and awareness-raising activities about thin physiques】. However, the analysis also found that the practical challenges for providing such health support consisted ofthe six categories of 【working with parents to liaise with medical institutions】,【continuous support in collaborationwith specialist agencies】,【 educational health support that enables all students to manage theirown health】,【 yogo teachersʼ professional knowledge and assessment of eating disorders】,【 support methodsthat students can engage with on their own initiative, according to their situation】, and 【creating a counseling-friendly environment to facilitate early detection】.Discussion: While yogo teachers had an overall grasp of studentsʼ situations through their organizationalengagements in cooperation with faculty and school physicians, as well as individual support activities, itwas clear that they faced difficulties and challenges in relation to working together with parents and specialistagencies. In the future, improving collaboration with parents will require that they, too, be encouragedto recognize that being excessively thin represents a health problem for adolescent female students. Inaddition, it will also be necessary to work towards building daily collaboration systems, such as by havingyogo teachers keep track of potential partner medical institutions as a matter of routine. It was further suggestedthat yogo teachers will need to provide educational and preventive health support oriented towardhelping female students acquire the ability to manage their own health.
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