Eating disorders can mar your self-esteem to the extent that you have a distorted sense of self. When a woman suffers from an eating disorder, her true worth is measured only by the amount she weighs and the smallest size she can fit in. No matter how thin she is, it is never good enough. True happiness comes when you love yourself the way you are and that is the core agenda while treating eating disorders.
An eating disorder has its roots in psychological manifestations like extremely low self-esteem and a poor view of the world. Hence, the treatment modality for an eating disorder starts by rooting out its psychological origins and this in turn helps the woman to gain inner self-confidence and develop healthier patterns of eating.
Effective Treatments For Eating Disorders
Recognizing The Problem
The first step towards treatment of an eating disorder begins when you admit to yourself that there is a problem and you begin to recognize it. In most cases, women remain blissfully unaware and do not actually see that there is a problem to begin with.
The admission is tough especially if the woman strongly believes the road to true happiness lies in her weight. The first step to recognizing the problem begins with listening to your body, listening to your feelings and trusting yourself.
Once you have recognized the problem, you need to start asking for help. This can only happen if you are motivated enough to do so. This seems to be a herculean task initially as most eating disorder sufferers are acutely embarrassed about the problem. Get in touch with a trusted friend, family member or relative and tell them all you can about the problem that you are undergoing.
If this seems too difficult, it is a good idea to approach a counsellor and a nutritionist. This is better as they are more likely to see your condition as a problem. Family members on the other hand are too shocked to emit a positive reaction or the necessary empathy.
Tell them about your entire case history, when the feelings began, when did the eating patterns manifest themselves, what kind of symptoms are you feeling, do you want your behaviour to be monitored and supported? These questions help you to lend pertinent information about yourself.
Treatment By A Specialist
It is better to get yourself treated under the guidance and supervision of a specialist.
Find someone who specializes in anorexia and bulimia. You can first get a referral from your health care provider. Find someone you can relate to and someone whom you can talk to without feeling judged.
Hospitalization And Administration Of Saline Drips
The first thing to do is address all underlying health problems. Anorexics and bulimics suffer from a host of health problems like irregular heartbeat, sallow skin, hair loss, scant periods, digestive troubles and extreme fatigue.
It is critical to get all your vital physical parameters checked and get the necessary treatment. If you are severely malnourished and cannot muster the energy to move, you may have to be hospitalized and put on saline drips.
The Long-term Treatment Plan
A long-term treatment plan for eating disorders usually involves intervention by a doctor, psychiatrist, counsellor and a psychologist. The therapy usually involves nutritional counselling, family therapy, group therapy and individual psychotherapy.
All of these aim at rehabilitating the sufferer to higher levels of self-esteem and development of healthier patterns of eating behaviour. It also aims at coping with the emotions that affect this sort of eating behaviour, i.e. the guilt, sadness, anxiety, fear and depression.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
One of the most commonly used therapies for the treatment of eating disorders is cognitive behavioural therapy. In this the psychologist aims to target and deal with negative thoughts and destructive thinking patterns that fuels or drives the patient to indulge in such unhealthy eating behaviours.
The approach creates more self-awareness of how you approach food. The emotional triggers that invariably lead to gross starvation are identified and all out efforts are made to remove these triggers. Relaxation techniques, healthy weight management and nutritional counselling form the cornerstones of cognitive behavioural therapy.
The aim of the nutritional counsellor is to educate you about all aspects of food, its nutritive value and foods that do not lead to unhealthy weight gain. Once you realize that eating healthy foods will not make you gain weight, you will be better able to manage your symptoms.
This takes a lot of time, dedication and perseverance, as the counsellor cannot change the habits of a lifetime overnight. Nutritional counselling helps the sufferers to develop a healthier relationship with food.
The support that you receive from group therapy remains invaluable in the arena of eating disorders. Groups make you feel appreciated, accepted and make you realize that you are not alone when it comes to the problems that you are facing.
Groups provide a safe and a non-judgmental environment for you to talk freely about your eating disorder and the feelings of shame, pain and fear that you may be undergoing. This in turn will make you also realize that you are not alone in the world and you are not the only one grappling with the problem of an eating disorder.
You can also find online support groups in the form of chat rooms and forums. Some websites are moderated by people who are recovering from eating disorders and can extend very good advice and support to you.
Self Help Strategies
The last step to recovery is you full ability to help yourself. This includes writing down a food journal and making notes on the amount of calories you have consumed and distraction strategies like playing with a pet or listening to music when irrational thoughts come to you mind.
Boosting your own self-esteem can come by doing something nice for someone else, which in turn makes you feel valued, loved and appreciated. This will help you to look inwardly at your own sense of self worth and find more constructive ways of enhancing your self-esteem.
Caution: Please use Home Remedies after Proper Research and Guidance. You accept that you are following any advice at your own risk and will properly research or consult healthcare professional.