Eating Disorder Services Offered In Nationwide
Eating disorders involve abnormal eating behavior and an obsession with food accompanied, in most cases, by an obsession with body weight and shape. At DigiPSYCH in New Jersey, California, Pennslyvania and Arizona, board-certified psychiatrist Asad Hussain, MD, offers specialized treatment for people of all ages suffering from an eating disorder like anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa. Call DigiPSYCH today or book a telepsychiatry appointment online and get expert support to overcome your eating disorder.
Eating Disorder Q&A
What is an eating disorder?
An eating disorder is a mental illness, an unhealthy relationship with food. People with eating disorders are often preoccupied with achieving an ideal body type. Their thinking about their weight and weight loss is disordered, and they restrict themselves to unsafe eating and dieting.
Eating disorders commonly appear during adolescence and young adulthood and can lead to emotional and social dysfunction. In severe cases, people suffer life-threatening physical complications from eating disorders.
Anorexia nervosa can result in premature death from medical complications or suicide. This eating disorder has higher mortality rates than any other mental health condition.
What are the different kinds of eating disorders?
The primary eating disorders are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorder:
Anorexia makes you believe you’re overweight even when you’re severely underweight. The inability to see yourself realistically can cause malnutrition and starvation. Anorexia symptoms include:
- Muscle wasting
- Thinning bones
- Dry, discolored skin
- Low blood pressure
- Constant coldness
- Chronic fatigue
- Fine hair growth (lanugo)
Untreated anorexia can cause brain and heart damage and could result in widespread organ failure.
Bulimia causes frequent binge-eating sessions. You devour an excessive amount of food, then become overwhelmed by feelings of self-loathing. To regain control and prevent weight gain, bulimics purge — make themselves vomit or use laxatives to hasten the passage of food.
These purges can cause:
- Swollen neck glands
- Sore throat
- Acid reflux
- Tooth decay
- Worn, sensitive teeth
- Digestive problems
- Nutrient deficiencies
People with bulimia can’t see how they really look. Just like anorexic patients, they have no control over their eating disorder.
Binge-eating disorder is similar to bulimia, but patients don’t purge. They often gain considerable weight, reinforcing their feelings of shame and despair.
How are eating disorders treated?
Treating eating disorders can be challenging because it’s difficult to convince people with problems like anorexia that they aren’t overweight. Dr. Hussain has many years of experience helping adolescents and adults with eating disorders. He uses medication and/or talk therapy to help you recognize your condition and make constructive changes.
You might benefit from:
- Individual psychotherapy
- Group therapy
- Nutrition counseling
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Antidepressant medication
- Antipsychotic drugs
- Mood stabilizers
A specific type of family therapy called the Maudsley Approach or the Maudsley Method can benefit people with eating disorders and their loved ones.
The Maudsley Approach involves the patient’s family in their treatment. For example, one parent must stay with a child suffering from bulimia for at least an hour after meals. Counseling sessions help the patient resume healthy eating and regain control of their food choices.
Call DigiPSYCH today or book an appointment online to find release from the misery of eating disorders.
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