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Eating Disorders

It’s getting physically and mentally harder to make it day-to-day.

The amount of energy you spend managing your food, managing your impulses, managing your negative body image is unsustainable.

It’s exhausting!

Some days, finding something that you can tolerate wearing is virtually impossible.

You end up with a crumpled pile of clothing on your bed – a mound of misery that will have to be dealt with when you get home tonight.

Still, you can’t stop.

No matter how miserable this is, no matter how many times you promise yourself that this is the last time – there is always another…

Another meal you just can’t eat…

Another binge you just can’t resist…

Another weight you have to reach…

Another and another and another…

If you’re finally ready to do something different, we can help.

We are trained, and specialize, in working with eating disorders.

And it matters: seeing someone without the requisite expertise can inadvertently exacerbate an eating disorder.

Not all therapists understand or are comfortable working with anorexia, bulimia, binge eating, orthorexia, or any other less defined (but no less painful) food concerns.

But there are 3 other reasons why you need to see a specialist.

An eating disorder is about the food.

Therapists are trained to see most symptoms as indicative of a larger emotional problem – and by and large, this is true.

But with eating disorders, you can’t just focus on relationships (though this is certainly a large part of the work of recovery as well) and hope the food issues will resolve themselves. You have to actually talk about the food. This is something that makes many therapists uncomfortable.

Nutrition is not a focus of a therapeutic education, and the specific dietary needs of an individual with an eating disorder are often different than those of the general population.

Moreover, when working with an eating disorder, the therapist needs to know and refer the client to nutritionists/dieticians who actually specialize in eating disorders, because the approach to diet with an eating disorder is as important as the food itself.

Well-meaning but uneducated dieticians can inadvertently reinforce eating disordered behaviors and beliefs.

When treating an eating disorder, a team approach is of the utmost importance.

An eating disorder is a physical, emotional, and psychological illness.

As such, you need a team of experts who both know how to treat their specific area of focus, and who also know enough about the other realms that they do not contradict each other. They should be collaborative and in contact with one another.

The ideal outpatient treatment for an eating disorder is comprised of a therapist, dietician, general practitioner, and, usually, a psychiatrist.

All of them need to have an expertise in working with eating disorders, and they all need to be in touch regularly.

Most treatment teams stay in touch by email and are also in contact with one another at least once a week during the first few months of treatment – and thereafter depending on the progress. This can be quite time consuming and some therapists are unable or unwilling to dedicate this kind of time outside of session.

Eating disorders are high risk.

Anorexia Nervosa is currently the deadliest psychiatric illness – the mortality rate associated with anorexia nervosa is 12 times higher than the death rate of ALL causes of death for females 15-24 years old.

Without treatment, up to 20% of people with serious eating disorders die.

Bulimia and Binge Eating Disorder also have serious physical conditions and complications that are associated with them and can also lead to death. For this reason, and because the therapist is generally the person on the team that the individual sees most often, it’s extremely important that a therapist understand the reports of the doctors. They should be able to identify many of the physical/external signs and symptoms that can indicate a problem.

At a certain point, therapists need to know when outpatient care is not only insufficient, but dangerous. The last thing a therapist wants to do is perpetuate the problem they are trying to solve.

With our expertise in this field, we can help you put together a team that is a good fit for your needs, help you navigate through and overcome your symptoms, and guide you to living a more full and satisfying life.

To get started, schedule a 15-minute consultation by calling (917) 750-1330.