The holidays usually mean lots of time with family and frankly, that can sometimes spell stress. Recovering from an eating disorder while trying to manage triggers and deal with family can really be an overwhelming endeavor. Many eating disorder treatment programs utilize Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) to help clients develop skills for distress tolerance, mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness, and emotion regulation. Treatment with DBT utilizes individual therapy and coaching as well as skills training to help clients develop mindful awareness, tolerate difficult situations, gain assertiveness skills, and regulate overwhelming emotions. DBT makes use of acronyms within these focus areas to help clients remember the important skills they are learning.
When an eating disorder strikes an individual, his or her entire family is affected. According to an article by Abigail Natenshon, MA, LCSW, GCFP, 87% of eating disorder patients are children and adolescents under the age of 20. As many in this age group still live at home, the eating disorder develops and plays out within the family dynamic. It often takes on a life of its own and can be the cause of many battles at meal times, family gatherings, holiday events, and can even affect extended family and school environments. Family therapy is an essential part of eating disorder treatment and is necessary to ensure everyone who is a part of the family system is cared for.
Food and Families
It is clear to see how some people get their eyes, smile, or even sense of humor from their parents. However, it may be equally true but perhaps less obvious that our relationships with food are connected to our families. Often the behaviors taught and reinforced in our family system contribute to how we act and the decisions we make long after we leave our family home.
Labor of Love: Helping Your Child Overcome an Eating Disorder
It can be worse than overwhelming to discover that your child has an eating disorder that can threaten their life and their future. As a parent instincts can run from denying that there is a problem, to thinking that it is a problem that is easily fixed, to wanting to do everything in your power to fix the problem for them. One of the first and most important things that parents must learn is that their child has a serious and life threatening illness that must be treated by professionals that specialize in eating disorders.
Does Your Child Need Inpatient Eating Disorder Treatment?
If you think or even suspect that your child might have an eating disorder, you need to make him or her appointment with either your family physician or a pediatrician. Eating disorders are a serious illness, they are not a fad and they do not go away on their own. Only a trained professional can make the final determination as to whether your child should be admitted to an inpatient eating disorder treatment facility or if outpatient care will help.
The medical professional you talk to will perform both a physical and a mental evaluation on your child. He will also talk to them to get a sense of how serious their disorder is before recommending inpatient eating disorder treatment. While an inpatient program will help your child recover and get started down the right road, he or she will need to continue with outpatient follow up for a long time before they are likely to be fully recovered from this potentially life threatening disease.
If you would like more information regarding eating disorders is teens please feel free to contact the Center for Discovery, we specialize in helping tweens and teens learn to overcome their eating disorder.
Should I Seek Help for Eating Disorders for My Child?
Far too many parents sit on the fence not knowing whether they should seek help for eating disorders for their child or not. In most cases you are the first line of defense when it comes to your children and the only one who is most likely to notice any dramatic changes in their eating habits. You are going to have to be brutally honest with yourself and not worry about anything but what is best for your child. If you have any inclination that there might be a problem, you need to have your child evaluated.
The longer you wait to seek treatment for eating disorders the harder it is likely to become to help your child overcome the reasons behind their disorder. You have to realize that any eating disorder is a disease that can only be cured by seeking professional care. Once you realize this, then seeking the help they need will be much easier for everyone.
If you need more information on getting help for eating disorders, the Center for Discovery has the answers you need.
Family Help from Eating Disorder Treatment Centers
By the time most families that have a child with an eating disorder has finally gotten to the point at which they have finally taken their child to one of the available eating disorder treatment centers, the child is not likely to be the only one who needs help. At this point the average family feels like they have been run through the mill and most likely needs a little help of their own. At the Center for Discovery we understand where the families are coming from and have programs in place to help.
By the time the average family arrives at our eating disorder treatment centers they need therapy almost as much as their loved one. We provide a full range of Family Therapy that is designed to help answer the questions , educate and encourage the rest of the family while their loved one is getting the help he or she needs. This way everyone is on the same page once they are reunited, making the rate of success for our programs much higher.
Center for Discovery eating disorder treatment centers believes that a family that has the advantage of their own therapy can and will do what is necessary to ensure the complete success of their loved one.
Outpatient Eating Disorder Treatment
If you feel that your child has an eating disorder of any kind, you need to make an appointment with your family doctor to have him or her diagnosed. You need to understand that an eating disorder is a disease that, like any other needs to be treated professionally if you want them to recover. There are several different forms of eating disorder and they all progress at different rates depending on the person who is suffering from the disease.
If you are fortunate enough to catch your child it the early stages of their eating disorder, you may find that a professionally managed outpatient eating disorder treatment program will be sufficient. Along with your help, this program can teach them what they need to know to overcome their disease and begin the road to recovery.
If you have a child that needs treatment for an eating disorder, you need to contact the Center for Discovery. We are dedicated to help children struggling with eating disorders.
Getting Your Child to Accept Treatment for Eating Disorders
Many of today’s teens struggle with their self-image among their peers; unfortunately the culture seems to still be projecting the idea that you have to be thin to be successful. This same image has been pushed on our youth for far too long. When this is what your child sees as being the norm and sets off down a very destructive path, you have no choice but to seek treatment for eating disorder. If you don’t the results of this type of behavior can be disastrous.
Getting your child to accept treatment for eating disorders is not likely to be an easy task, it is most likely going to take intervention by a team of professionals. These are people who have been specially trained to work with teens to help them see that they need to enter a treatment program. Once entered into a program, your child will work with a team of specialists who will help them to unlearn the destructive behavior and teach them how to be happy with who they are. From here they will learn to overcome their eating disorder and be ready to return to their family and their lives.
If you have a teen that needs treatment for eating disorders, don’t wait until it is too late. Contact the Center for Discovery and get them the help they need now.
When a teen has an eating disorder, there are normally a number of different psychological, physical, and behavioral problems that are contributing to the problem, because of this it is important the family becomes involved in eating disorder treatment if the patient is to be successful. Family involvement takes on many different roles, from teaching the family to communicate better, firming up relationships and the important foundation that family represents to giving the family the skills they need to help the teen recover from their eating disorder.
Like many other disorders, eating disorders are a family affair, it will be the families job to help and support the teen and not to enable them once they complete their eating disorder treatment. The goal of family programs is to equip each member of the family to be able to do this, thus giving the teen the best chance of success.
The Center for Discovery offers well rounded adolescent residential programs aimed at helping teens overcome their eating disorders.