Eating disorders are serious mental health conditions that can affect people regardless of their age, gender, or background.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, someone who has an eating disorder typically struggles with troubling feelings or emotions regarding their body image, weight, or relationship with food. This can impact every aspect of their day-to-day life and, in the most severe circumstances, can even be fatal.
At Montrose Behavioral Health Hospital, we offer inpatient and outpatient treatment for people who are struggling with a mental health condition and a co-occurring eating disorder. Recovery is possible with the support of our highly experienced team.
Signs & Symptoms of an Eating Disorder
The symptoms of an eating disorder vary depending on the eating disorder someone is suffering from and other factors, such as their family history and certain experiences they may have had throughout their life. However, there are certain behaviors that might indicate that someone is struggling with one of these conditions.
Common signs and symptoms of an eating disorder include:
- Cannot stop thinking about food, dieting, or weight loss
- Is constantly concerned about body shape or size
- Frequently diets or has new food practices
- Refuses to eat certain foods or cuts out food groups
- Seems uncomfortable eating around others
- Eats small portions or skips entire meals
- Stops taking part in favorite activities or hobbies
- Starts bowing out of social events with loved ones
- Has intense, unpredictable changes in mood
- Has noticeable changes in weight
- Has trouble getting quality sleep
Not everyone experiences the same eating disorder symptoms, but recognizing the signs of an eating disorder can help you know when to get professional support.
Common Causes of & Risk Factors for Eating Disorders
Eating disorders are often the result of a combination of multiple factors in a person’s life rather than a single cause. Common causes of and risk factors for eating disorders include:
- Family history – People who have first-degree relatives, such as parents or siblings, who have an eating disorder are more likely to also suffer from an eating disorder.
- Environment – Someone who lives or works in a place where thinness is valued may be at a higher risk for developing an eating disorder.
- Temperament – Someone who struggles with anxiety, perfectionism, or obsessive traits may be at a higher risk for developing an eating disorder.
Eating Disorder Statistics
- The National Institute of Mental Health reported that of 2,980 survey respondents, 56.2% who had anorexia nervosa, 94.5% who had bulimia nervosa, and 78.9% who had binge-eating disorder also had another mental health condition.
- Among the survey respondents, 47.9% who had anorexia, 80.6% who had bulimia, and 65.1% who had binge-eating disorder also had an anxiety disorder.
- Additionally, 42.1% who had anorexia, 70.7% who had bulimia, and 46.4% who had binge-eating disorder also had depression.
Learn About Treatment for a Co-Occurring Eating Disorder
It’s difficult enough to function when you have a mental health condition. But when you develop an eating disorder later on, or a co-occurring eating disorder, it can be even harder to make it through the day.
While you might feel overwhelmed right now, know that you don’t always have to feel this way. By finding a place to get treatment for a co-occurring eating disorder, you can learn to manage the symptoms that have caused you so much distress.
At Montrose Behavioral Health Hospital, we offer both inpatient and outpatient treatment options for people who are struggling with co-occurring eating disorders. We assess each person’s specific situation to determine which level of care best fits their current needs.
By working with the expert team at our co-occurring eating disorder treatment center, you can get to the root of your struggles with a mental health condition and co-occurring eating disorder. You can also develop valuable coping skills that can help you resist relapse and remain in recovery longer.
Reaching out for professional help can feel intimidating, but it’s often the first step toward a much brighter future.
Therapies Used to Treat a Co-Occurring Eating Disorder
When you find a place to get co-occurring eating disorder treatment that truly fits your needs, it can be life-changing. At Montrose Behavioral Health Hospital, we personalize the co-occurring eating disorder treatment we provide for each person we support.
To accomplish this, we will conduct a comprehensive assessment of your medical history and current symptoms, along with a physical exam. Gathering this information will allow us to tailor your co-occurring eating disorder treatment to address your specific needs and goals.
Group therapy is the primary method of care we use at our co-occurring eating disorder treatment center, though you may also take part in individual counseling and family therapy as needed. Throughout your time in treatment for a co-occurring eating disorder, you may engage in elements of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). Other services we provide include medication management, basic medical care, and detoxification.
The highly experienced team at our co-occurring eating disorder treatment center will monitor you every step of the way to ensure that you continually make progress toward your treatment goals.
The Impact of an Untreated Co-Occurring Eating Disorder
If you’ve developed an eating disorder in addition to a mental health concern, it is crucial to find a place to get co-occurring eating disorder treatment as soon as possible. Without treatment for a co-occurring eating disorder, the symptoms of these conditions will likely worsen over time, and this can have a devastating impact on every aspect of your life.
While co-occurring eating disorders affect each person differently, these are common ways these conditions can affect someone in the absence of treatment:
- Long-term heart problems
- Damage to the esophagus
- Malnutrition or dehydration
- Trouble fighting infections
- Menstrual irregularities in women
- Trouble functioning at work
- Difficulty maintaining relationships
- Strained relationships with loved ones
- Thoughts of suicide or suicide attempts
In the most severe circumstances, a co-occurring eating disorder can be fatal. But with the support of the professionals at Montrose Behavioral Health Hospital, someone who is struggling with a co-occurring eating disorder can get on the path to lasting recovery.
This content was written on behalf of and reviewed by the clinical staff at Montrose Behavioral Health Hospital.