Diets can be adopted in healthy ways, but dieting behavior can also be taken to an unhealthy extreme. Some people who are preoccupied with their weight develop anorexia nervosa, an eating disorder that causes people to restrict their caloric intake to an unhealthy degree. Anorexia can be dangerous both physically and mentally. If you struggle with anorexia, you'll need appropriate treatment in order to recover. Here are a few things that anorexia medical treatment can do for people with this eating disorder:
1. Help patients regain vital weight
Low body weight can put people at risk for many diseases, such as osteoporosis and heart disease. Severe anorexia can cause organ damage, tooth loss, and even hair loss. Regaining weight can be a struggle for anorexic patients, who often see weight gain as a threat to their well-being. Patients with severe malnutrition are at risk for refeeding syndrome if food isn't carefully reintroduced back into their lives. Anorexia medical treatment will help patients gain weight in healthy, safe ways. Patients will be monitored to ensure they eat their meals and do not purge them afterward.
2. Provide counseling for psychological healing
Anorexia is a hard disease to treat because it has a psychological basis. Many anorexic patients suffer from body dysmorphia. They may see themselves as overweight when in reality, they are severely underweight. Ongoing counseling is required to help patients adopt a healthier mindset. Some patients develop anorexia as a result of trauma; it can provide a way for patients to feel in control of themselves and their lives. Counseling will help patients develop coping mechanisms they can use that do not involve starvation.
3. Incorporate family members into treatment
The support of people around you is crucial when it comes to healing from anorexia. Many people with anorexia take great pains to hide their condition from others, but family input can prevent restrictive behavior and relapses. Family involvement is especially important for teenagers who still live at home. Family members can be incorporated into anorexia treatment in the form of family counseling sessions. During these sessions, an emphasis will be placed on supporting the family member who is struggling with anorexia nervosa.
4. Prevent relapses
It's common for anorexic patients to relapse, but the likelihood of a relapse can be reduced with ongoing therapy. Many eating disorder treatment centers offer ongoing therapy for recovering patients. Touching base with a therapist weekly or biweekly can help recovering patients maintain a healthy relationship with food.
Contact a local medical professional to learn more about anorexia treatment.