Category Archives: Center for Discovery

Can The Fear of Freshman 15 Lead to Eating Disorder Behaviors?

Unhappy Teenage Girl Measuring WaistThe Fear of Freshman 15 and Eating Disorder Behaviors

The transition from high-school to college can be, and often is, a very trying time in a young adult’s life. Learning how to live on your own, attempting to develop new relationships, enduring countless late nights studying- these common stressors are all immediately propelled into the everyday routine of a new college student. Unfortunately, in addition to the unavoidable pressures of college comes an insatiable inclination to maintain or meet the body standards that the media at large portrays as desirable. For incoming college freshman this often means avoiding the dreaded “Freshman 15” at any cost. The stigma of the freshman 15, which researchers have in fact proven to be a myth, in combination with the stressors of college can quickly trigger or worsen selective eating disorder or other eating disorder behaviors.

Continue reading

What It Feels Like to Have a Panic Attack

What It Feels Like to Have a Panic AttackFind Out What It Feels Like to Have a Panic Attack

People who suffer from panic attacks confess that while they may know they are not in any real danger, their bodies and minds tell them otherwise. “I am absolutely terrified, and I feel like I’m reduced to a childlike state,” one woman says. “Throughout the years, I’ve looked for a clear explanation of what others have experienced within their own panic attacks to better understand them myself,” Nicole Martin writes in a recent article for TheMighty.com. “Yet with every explanation I read, I would only get a list of symptoms and no personal expression. I’d just get lists- hyperventilating, sweating, fear overwhelming them. Although these are valuable examples, I was looking for something more in-depth. So I decided to write about my own experience within my attacks.”

Continue reading

How to Talk with Children About Eating Disorder Treatment

How to Talk with Children About Eating Disorder TreatmentEarly Prevention and Treatment: How to Talk with Children About Eating Disorder Treatment

According to Lynn Grefe, the late founder and director of the National Eating Disorders Association, the key to successful eating disorder treatment is recognizing the symptoms early. “The longer the person has an eating disorder, the harder the recovery,” she told ABC News. When children are identified early, there is hope, Ms. Grefe insisted. “I see children 11, 12, 13 and their parents still have control and can make decisions about their treatment and are not scared to take action. There are wonderful results.” But just talking to children about an eating disorder treatment program can be tricky. How old should a child be when they begin treatment? Or how old do children need to be in order to understand what a sister, brother, or parent is going through with an ED? Fortunately, NEDA, Ms. Grefe’s organization, offers guidance for troubled parents, with a list of anticipated questions –and some answers.

Continue reading

What Coaches Need to Know About Eating Disorder Treatment

What Coaches Need to Know About Eating Disorder TreatmentSports and Eating Disorders: What Coaches Need to Know About Eating Disorder Treatment

What do an Olympic swimming champion, a famous college football kicker, a highly successful professional baseball payer, and a rising tennis star all have in common? Eating disorders. “Studies show that as you move up in competition level, problems with eating disorders increase,” says Ron Thompson, PhD, an Indiana-based sports psychologist who specializes in eating disorders. “The same competitive personality traits and perfectionist tendencies that make elite athletes successful are also factors that contribute to eating disorders.” Dr. Thompson told ESPN, “I’d estimate that 90 percent of the college athletes I see with eating disorders do not develop their problems in college. They begin much earlier, at the high school level.”

Continue reading

When is Outpatient Treatment for Bulimia an Option?

Outpatient Treatment for BulimiaOut of the Shadows: Outpatient Treatment For Bulimia

In the secret life of teenagers, it’s a dangerous silent threat to physical and mental health. Young people with bulimia nervosa may hide this eating disorder long into adulthood because they feel guilty and ashamed. The disorder can continue for years before anyone notices because the person’s outward physical appearance or size may offer no obvious clues. As Australian journalist and writer June Alexander reveals, on the National Association of Eating Disorders blog, “My life, from the age of 15 to 30 years was a struggle – no wonder my family, husband and friends had trouble understanding me, and no wonder I had trouble understanding myself.” Most people respond first to residential treatment or a partial hospitalization program, but if their physical and emotional health and are determined to be stable, outpatient (OP), or intensive outpatient care (IOP), for bulimia can be an option.

Continue reading

Research Confirms Link Between Trauma and Eating Disorder Recovery

trauma and eating disorder recoveryTrauma and Eating Disorder Recovery: Studies Reveal High Rates of PTSD Among People with EDs

According to a report by Nurse.com, recent research confirms an important relationship between traumatic events, post-traumatic stress disorder, and eating disorders. The studies reveal high precentages of PTSD among people with eating disorders. This is no surprise to PTSD expert Rachel Yehuda, PhD, a professor of psychiatry and neuroscience at Mount Sinai Medical Center. Dr. Yehuda told Nurse.com, “It completely makes sense to me that there would be trauma-related symptoms in people who have eating disorders. Eating disorders are, in some sense, about trying to control your environment. People who have been exposed to uncontrollable, traumatic events -such as being the victim of interpersonal violence or having an accident that could have resulted in physical injury or death -may wish to try to control their environments by restricting their own food intake.”

Continue reading

New Movie Shines Spotlight on Anorexia and Residential Treatment for Eating Disorders

residential treatment for eating disordersAnorexia and Residential Treatment for Eating Disorders

In ‘To The Bone,’ British-born actress Lily Collins (Mirror, Mirror) and Keanu Reeves star in a dark comedy/drama about a young woman in a residential eating disorder treatment program. Writer and director Marti Noxon says the film’s unusual story comes from her own personal battles with weight stigma, body issues, and her recovery from anorexia. While it’s common for people to complain that nearly every actress in Hollywood has an eating disorder, it’s rare for Tinseltown to produce films that honestly portray people with eating disorders and treatment for them. Noxon admits that she hopes to shatter some of the myths people may have about eating disorders. Ms. Collins says, “I’m incredibly honored to be part of such a powerful story of love, self-doubt, and the courage it takes to fight for survival. I believe this film has the potential to shine a light on something that’s becoming more prevalent within our society every day and let those suffering know they’re not alone.” 

Continue reading

How to Get Through the Holidays When Your Teen is in Residential Treatment for an Eating Disorder

Teen is in Residential Treatment for an Eating DisorderParents Offer Advice for Families Fighting Eating Disorders During the Holiday Season

Recovery, relapse, treatment, therapy, support groups…When your child’s eating disorder makes the rest of the family feel like prisoners to the disorder, it can all become a mad blur, some parents admit. Add any holiday expectations to this mix, and the season can turn into something you merely want to survive. At the times when the path to recovery seems like a painful, exhausting journey, it’s not always easy to remember that every step in a forward direction will lead to healing. That someday soon, you’ll have your child back, and life will return to a normal state. If your teen is in residential treatment for eating disorder, you’ve probably already done or tried nearly everything you can to help them. But who is looking after you?

Continue reading

New Law Promises More Help for Families With Eating Disorders

New Law Promises More Help for Families With Eating Disorders21st Century Cures Act: New Law Promises More Help for Families With Eating Disorders

For the first time in U.S. history, legislation that includes provisions specifically designed to help people with eating disorders passed votes by both Congress and the Senate. President Barak Obama recently signed the bill into law. “This legislation will have a profound impact on the millions of Americans experiencing eating disorders and will help ensure they will not be denied access to the same mental health services as those facing other types of illnesses,” said West Virginia Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R). Within the bipartisan 21st Century Cures and Mental Health Reform Package were key provisions from the Anna Westin Act of 2015 that sought to improve health insurance coverage for eating disorders and residential treatment, increase training for health professionals in the identification of EDs, and enhance information and resources available to the public. Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar (D) said, “Passing our bipartisan legislation into law brings us one step closer to preventing future tragedies and giving patients the tools they need to get help.”

Continue reading

Your Eating Disorder and 2017: How to Ring in the New Year with Positive Goals

How to Ring in the New Year with Positive GoalsHow to Make New Year’s Resolutions You’ll Want to Keep

If you work out regularly in a public place, you’ve seen them– the people that fill the gyms or bike trails on January 2nd, and then disappear in a few weeks. Like fad diets, these intense bursts of energy may actually cause people to gain weight, binge, or engage in weight cycling. While starting the New Year with a fresh objective might sound like a good idea, most people tend to focus on changes that involve diet, weight, appearance, or exercise, all goals that could easily reinforce emotional triggers for people with eating disorders, and threaten their recovery. But what if you abandon the ordinary and decide to create your own resolutions? What if you could set goals that empower your recovery rather than adopt ones that might sabotage it? Here are some suggestions from people who are determined to embrace the coming new year.

Continue reading

by at .