When individuals are overly focused on food, weight, or the shape of their
bodies, this may be a signal that an eating disorder has developed or
is developing. Common eating disorders include Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia
Nervosa, and Binge-Eating Disorder.
With Anorexia Nervosa, individuals tend to restrict the amount of food
that is consumed and may see themselves as being overweight, even when
they may be severely underweight. Several health issues are presented
as a result. Treatment and early intervention is very important since
Anorexia Nervosa has the highest mortality rate of any mental disorder.
Bulimia Nervosa is an eating disorder in which individuals have multiple
episodes of eating large quantities of food and feel unable to control
this eating behavior. The large intake of food is then followed by some
sort of compensatory behavior such as vomiting, exercise, or laxative abuse.
Individuals who have Binge-Eating Disorder also struggle with eating large
quantities of food and feel unable to control their behavior. The compensatory
behavior that is seen with Bulimia Nervosa does not follow the large intake
of food with Binge-Eating Disorder. Binge Eating Disorder is the most
common eating disorder that occurs in the United States.
Eating disorders are complex in nature. All body types are present in the
three eating disorders. Having an eating disorder creates a significant
amount of stress for the individual, as well as shame. Several medical
symptoms - in addition to the psychological components - often accompany
the eating disorder which frequently leads to further complications. The
cause of an eating disorder is multi-faceted and can be a combination
of biological, psychological, social, and behavioral issues. Eating disorders
affect both males and females. With proper intervention and treatment
from dietitians, psychotherapists, and psychiatrists, a sense of wellness
can be re-established, leading to a healthy and satisfying life.
Eating Disorders Awareness Week
February 21-27, 2016
According to the Eating Disorders Coalition, more than 30 million Americans
have an eating disorder. Contrary to popular belief, eating disorders
do not only affect females. Both males and females are severely impacted.
A disturbing fact is that eating disorders have the highest rate of mortality
in America of all mental illnesses. The mortality rate can be as high as 20%.
The enormous emphasis on physical appearance in our society results in
deleterious effects on both adults and youth. Among the adolescent population,
Anorexia Nervosa is the 3rd most common chronic illness which speaks to its early presentation. The
good news is that eating disorders can be treated successfully and recovery maintained.
Early detection and treatment of eating disorders is beneficial as with
any illness. However, the key word is “treatment”.
Mission Hospital Laguna Beach currently has an Eating Disorders Treatment
Program for ages 18 and older. The four core values are the foundation
of our treatment and guide our research-based approach. We offer a full
day program Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. as well
as a shorter day from 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. for those who may be further
along in their progress. It is a group treatment program with a weekly
family component included. Treatment is provided by caring, licensed clinicians.
Patients attend group psychotherapy, meet with a psychiatrist on a weekly
basis, receive medical nutrition education and therapy from a licensed
dietitian, and have supervised meals. Complimentary treatments such as
yoga and spirituality groups are provided to further support the healing
and recovery process. If you or anyone you know is struggling with an
eating disorder, please call us at (949) 499-7504.
We are here to help.