What is an Eating Disorder?
Do you have low self-esteem? Do you feel inadequate or like you have no control of what is going on in your life? Do you ever feel lonely or depressed? Do you often get angry? Are you obsessed with the way you look and the shape of your body? Do you think you are too fat? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may have an eating disorder or “ED” as they are sometimes referred. Not all individuals who have these feelings develop this disease. And yes, eating disorders are diseases and like some cancers, EDs can lead to death if not properly diagnosed and treated.
EDs are diagnosed by a medical care professional after an individual displays abnormal eating habits, negatively affecting one’s mental and physical health. Here are the more commonly known ones:
- Atypical anorexia nervosa (weight is not below normal)
- Bulimia nervosa (with less frequent behaviors)
- Binge-eating disorder (with less frequent occurrences)
Anorexia nervosa sufferers will do whatever they can to prevent weight gain, including minimal food intake, excessive exercising, and self-induced vomiting.
Individuals with a diagnosis of bulimia will usually eat large amounts of food and then purge (or vomit) to get rid of the food from the body. They will also abuse laxatives to pass the food through the body.
Another form of ED is “binge” eating. This is a condition whereby individuals will eat large amounts of food in a short period of time at least once a week for a period of at least three months. After the binge eating, there is a feeling of guilt and shame. I am sure we have all experienced sitting in front of the TV at night and munching on everything we could. Not everyone who overeats is a “binger.” The difference between “binge” eating and bulimia is that binge eaters do not purge, or vomit. This causes the binge eater to be overweight and obese.
What are the signs of an Eating Disorder?
We have probably all experienced some of the signs associated with an eating disorder at one point or another. Nobody is perfect and as humans we tend to beat ourselves us about our appearances. However, individuals suffering with an eating disorder experience these symptoms daily and may experience a few at a time. The most common signs of an eating disorder are:
- Constant dieting despite being underweight
- Extreme gain/loss in weight
- Obsession with appearance
- Obsession with calories and fat contents in the food
- Episodes of depression or lethargic behavior
- Withdrawn from family and friends
Treating an Eating Disorder at FHE Health
Here at FHE Health, we pride ourselves in being on the forefront of mental health care, offering cutting-edge approaches that integrate the medical, psychiatric, and clinical components of treatment, such as our Neuro-Rehabilitative Services. We firmly believe that any mental health disorder diagnosis should be quantifiable and that the recommended treatments for our patients have been proven effective.
While other treatment centers diagnose based only the description of symptoms, also known as “guess work,” we utilize a series of biometrics, based on brain imaging, genetic blood testing, and other advanced protocols to provide our patients with a full interpretation of their condition. These biometrics and diagnostic tools are used to scientifically track the progression of treatment and even predict when our patients will experience a “flare-up” with their disorder. By using state-of-the-art systems, like our qEEG-guided Neurofeedback, we are able to personalize each patients’ treatment plan to fit their specific needs. In order to satisfy the needs of each patient, we offer an 8-Tier Neuro-Rehabilitative treatment program which includes:
- Comprehensive Neuro-Psychological Testing
- Heart Rate Variability & Biosound Monitoring
- Quantitative Electroencephalography (qEEG)
- QEEG-Guided Neurofeedback Training
- Electrical Nerve Stimulation Therapy
- High Frequency Pulsed Electromagnetic Stimulation Therapy
- Deep Brain Stimulation Therapy
- Computerized Cognitive Brain Training