Therapy therapy therapy

Many people have never taken part in any therapy or counselling sessions and many are very sceptical about the benefits of talking things through with someone who, at least initially, is a complete stranger. However, there is no doubt that one of the most effective and long-lasting treatments for an eating disorder is some form of therapy or counselling, coupled with careful attention to medical and nutritional needs. Ideally, this treatment should be tailored to the individual and will vary according to both the severity of the disorder and the patient's individual problems, needs and strengths. This chapter provides an overview of some of the types of therapy available to young people suffering from an eating disorder.

The general aims of therapy for a young person with an eating disorder are to:

• explore the thoughts and feelings that led to the eating disorder

• help the patient overcome his obsession with body shape and size

• help the patient overcome his fears about eating

• help the patient improve his self-esteem

• help the patient establish a healthy approach to eating that will ensure an appropriate level of weight gain.

As well as one-to-one counselling and psychotherapy, many therapies are used in the treatment of eating disorders. The main ones include:

• group therapy

• occupational therapy which might include art, music and drama therapy

• family therapy

cognitive behavioural therapy.

Breaking Bulimia

Breaking Bulimia

We have all been there: turning to the refrigerator if feeling lonely or bored or indulging in seconds or thirds if strained. But if you suffer from bulimia, the from time to time urge to overeat is more like an obsession.

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