In my approach with eating disorders I believe that eating disorders develop as a form of survival and as an attempt to cope with underlining emotional issues. Some of these issues include, but are limited to family dynamics, life stressors and traumatic experiences. Eating disorders become a coping mechanism and take on a powerful meaning and purpose. I believe the meaning is unique to each individual’s story and as such their treatment should be individualized. For some it may provide a voice, an identity, a perceived sense of control or a way to manage the overwhelming feelings associated with trauma. Eating disorders over time, especially if left untreated, can become all-consuming, effecting the individual’s relationship with food, relationship with their body, their sense of self-worth and their relationships with others. Eating disorders are debilitating and pervasive disorders that effect an individual’s mental and physical health. For this reason I believe in a collaborative approach with a multidisciplinary team, which can include a dietician, a physician and a psychiatrist when appropriate.
My approach with eating disorders comes from my time working in private practice, intensive outpatient and partial hospitalizations programs. In these settings I have worked closely with a treatment team (nurses, psychiatrists and dieticians) to provide the appropriate care for individuals. A multidisciplinary team is also important because eating disorders often times occur with other mental disorders (depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder etc.,). Some of the eating disorder and body image issues I treat include anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, eating disorder unspecified, orthorexia, obsessive dieting and exercise and body image issues.
In working with clients my goal is to create a safe environment where clients feel able to explore their eating disorder thoughts, their beliefs about their bodies, their fears and their underlining emotions. Through this exploration my goal is for clients to gain awareness of the meaning and purpose the eating disorder serves in their lives. Each individual is unique, each story is unique, the development an eating disorder is unique and I believe each recovery is unique. My goal is to work with clients with an individualized approach and to meet clients where ever they are in their recovery journey.
To learn more about eating disorders, including if you are a loved one searching for help for a family member or friend. Click on the link below for additional resources.
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