Eating Disorder

treatment

Eating disorders are a serious mental health issue that requires specialized treatment. One person dies every 52 minutes from an eating disorder. It is estimated that  28.8 million people in the United States will have an eating disorder during their lifetime. If you spend every waking hour obsessing about food, you might have an eating disorder. Our compassionate team at Moment of Clarity offers a professional treatment program.  We aim to help people overcome their struggles with weight, food, and exercise.

What Is an Eating Disorder?

People often think of anorexia and bulimia when they think of eating disorders. However, these are only two types of eating disorders. Generally, an eating disorder is a serious mental health disorder that concerns someone’s relationship with food. Some eating disorders include eating too little, and others include eating too much.

The ability to get proper nutrition is one of the key characteristics of an eating disorder. Someone may develop an eating disorder at any age, but many begin their struggle with food during their teens and 20s. Women are twice as likely as men to develop eating disorders. People of color are half as likely to get diagnosed or receive treatment for an eating disorder.

Signs and Symptoms of an Eating Disorder

Eating disorders center around a person’s relationship with food. Each type of disorder has specific characteristics, but many disorders share signs and symptoms. Successful treatment of an eating disorder depends on early detection. If you know the basic warning signs, you can seek treatment options or help someone you love get help. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), symptoms of eating disorders

The NIMH warns that other symptoms can develop over time. They include:

Types of Eating Disorders

The most common eating disorders are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder.

Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia nervosa is a disorder characterized by severely restricted eating.  People with anorexia avoid food or eat small quantities of specific foods.  A continuous obsession with body weight also plagues those with anorexia.

In the most severe cases, anorexics starve themselves to death. Their low food consumption leads to poor nutrition, causing other complications. Some also struggle with binge-purge episodes and use laxatives and diuretics to get rid of the food they consume.

Bulimia Nervosa

Bulimia nervosa is a mental health disorder characterized by binging and purging. Those who struggle with bulimia eat large quantities of food and feel unable to control their eating. After binge eating, they compensate with forced vomiting, laxatives, diuretics, fasting, or excessive exercise.

Unlike anorexics, those who struggle with bulimia are not always underweight. Some are at a healthy weight or overweight. This makes bulimia easier to hide from friends and family. 

Bulimia nervosa has distinctive symptoms that include:

Binge-eating Disorder

Binge-eating disorder is characterized by the uncontrolled consumption of large amounts of food in a short time. The NIMN reports that binge-eating disorder is the most prevalent eating disorder in the United States.

Many assume eating disorders only relate to those trying to be thinner and who are underweight. This is not always the case. Those who suffer from binge-eating disorder do not purge, fast, or excessively exercise. They are often overweight or obese.

Other specific signs and symptoms related to binge-eating disorder include:

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Treatment Options for Eating Disorders

If you identify with any signs or symptoms of eating disorders, it’s crucial you seek treatment. You are not alone, and with the right treatment, you can develop a healthy relationship with food. Taking action can prevent suicide, alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety, and prevent long-term medical complications.

Moments of Clarity offers outpatient treatment for eating disorders tailored to your individual needs. Treatment plans include one or more of the following:

Psychotherapy

Various types of individual and group therapy help people overcome their eating disorders. Psychotherapy helps people deal with trauma and other underlying issues that contribute to their obsessive behaviors about food. The most common type of psychotherapy is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). CBT focuses on helping people change negative patterns in their thoughts and behavior. Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is a type of CBT that specifically focuses on developing behavioral skills. DBT has four main components:

Medical Care

Even in the earliest stages of an eating disorder, people sometimes experience medical complications. Depending on the situation, outpatient medical care for an eating disorder can include monitoring vitals, organ function, and minor symptoms. This provides patients and families with information about physical progress during their outpatient treatment program.

Nutritional Counseling

Learning about proper nutrition is typically a part of all eating disorder treatment plans. Nutritionists help patients create a healthy eating plan as soon as they begin treatment. Specialized nutrition counseling helps those with eating disorders break away from obsessive patterns that harm their bodies.

Medication

Eating disorders often co-occur with other mental health conditions. Research shows that prescription medications can help treat eating disorders and co-occurring disorders, such as depression and anxiety. Medication is typically only an option with psychotherapy and might include one or more antidepressants, antipsychotics, and mood stabilizers.

Contact Moment of Clarity today to start your recovery from an eating disorder. Our team of professionals is here to help.

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