A private London clinic integrating psychiatry and psychology

Therapies for Eating Disorders

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Many people struggle with some form of eating disturbance. Eating disordered symptoms fall on a continuum from full-blown diagnosable eating disorders such as Bulimia, Binge-eating Disorder and Anorexia, or can be disruptions in healthy eating accompanied by body image difficulties that don’t meet the full criteria for a diagnosis. A thorough assessment will be conducted to ascertain where the afflicted person falls on the continuum.

Often certain personality traits contribute to disordered eating/body image difficulties such as Perfectionism, and/or a very powerful need for control that usually plays out via the body – except that it’s not only about body, it’s also about self-esteem, unacknowledged negative feelings, beliefs about physical attractiveness and how those link to a sense of worthiness and acceptability. Because people with this kind of difficulty often struggle to work out what constitutes balanced eating, an onward referral to a specialist dietician might be indicated as part of the overall treatment plan. Disturbed eating behaviour often (although not always) requires a multi-faceted approach in terms of the psychology aspect, the nutritional aspect, and the psychiatric/medical aspect, especially if there is accompanying anxiety, depression and/or medical problems such as electrolyte imbalance.

References

Agras, W.S., & Apple, R.F. (2008). Overcoming your eating disorder: A cognitive-behavioral therapy approach for Bulimia Nervosa and Binge-Eating disorder. Oxford University Press.

Bryant-Waugh, R. & Lask, B. (2013). Eating Disorders: A parents' guide. Routledge.

Fairburn, C. (2008). Cognitive behavior therapy and eating disorders. The Guilford Press

Simpson, S. & Smith, E. (Eds) (2020). Schema therapy for eating disorders. Routledge

Scheel, J. (2011). When food is family: a loving approach to healing eating disorders. Idyll Arbor

Zerbe, K. (2008) Integrated treatment for eating disorders. W Norton & Co.

Schmidt, U., Treasure, J., & Alexander, J. (2015). Getting better bite by bite: A survival kit for sufferers of bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorders. Routledge.

Contact and Appointments

If you are seeking an appointment with a psychiatrist, you should discuss this first with your GP to obtain a referral. Referrals are also accepted from clinical psychologists and counsellors.

Once you have your referral, please do contact us via our Enquiry Form and one of our team will be in touch without delay.

Overseas referrals are warmly welcomed. We do also see individuals without a family doctor (GP), and we can help you find a private or NHS family doctor.