Eating disorders are serious health conditions that can have long-lasting and often life-threatening consequences for the patients. Like with most behavioral conditions, the causes of these disorders are often a combination of a number of different factors such. In particular, there are physiological, psychological, and social aspects of these conditions which must be addressed accordingly with the treatment for eating disorders.
This information focuses on the different psychologial treatments for eating disorders. Of course, readers need to understand that there are a number of different treatment approaches to choose from. After all, people tend to have different responses to different treatments. That being said, some people find that a psychological approach to their disorder tends to be more effective than others in terms of helping them kick their unhealthy intuitive eating habits for good.
Understanding the Psychological Treatment for Eating Disorders
Psychotherapy is perhaps the most well-known psychological treatment plan for eating disorder patients. As one would expect, it gives emphasis to the patient’s inner thoughts and emotions. This is vital in terms of helping therapists get to the underlying factors behind the self-destructive behaviors.
In most cases, therapists would explore the patient’s cognitive patterns(1), specifically, how they think and the things which motivate them. More importantly, these therapy sessions would also pay close attention to the relationship the patient has with their immediate family and friends. After all, psychotherapy firmly believes in the long-lasting effects of these relationships to the way people live their lives.
Of course, there are many variants and contending schools of thought when it comes to the treatment for eating disorders. Presented below are just some of the treatment options available to patients looking to get better.
- Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) – This is a form of psychological therapy which was initially developed in the UK. Since then, it has undergone serious upheavals and tweaking in terms of theory in order to make it more applicable in real-life scenarios. In particular, it integrates cognitive and analytic practices while making use of a collaborative approach that ensures the patient’s full involvement in their own treatment.
Put simply, this type of therapy seeks to identify chains of events, motivations, thoughts, and emotions that helped build and maintain the patient’s eating disorder. At the same time, it recognizes the importance of human interaction and past trauma in the development of such problems. After all, these problems do not arise in a vacuum.
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) – This is another variant of the psycho-social approach to eating disorders. It is commonly used to intervene with a patient’s unhealthy behavior with the hope of curing them altogether. In particular, it focuses on solving existing problems and addressing unhealthy patterns in the way the person thinks.
This means focusing not only on their thoughts but also on their beliefs and attitudes regarding weight, body image, and health. All of this is done with the goal of fixing behavioral patterns and helping patients regulate their emotions better.
This overview offers some help with the psychological approach to treatment for eating disorders. It also delves into the different variants so that readers can better understand how these treatments can help them with their problem.
Article reference: (1) https://psychcentral.com/lib/15-common-cognitive-distortions/