Living a healthy, fulfilling, and productive life requires certain key ingredients. Most importantly, and the basic necessity to stay alive, is food and water! However, there are times when food becomes an enemy, an obstacle to healthy living. Rather than providing nourishment, food and eating may begin to take on unhealthy and damaging functions. If you are reading this then you, or someone you love—your child, your sibling, your friend—may be experiencing problems with disordered eating.
Many teens also suffer from co-occurring substance use disorders (often as high as 50%), mood disorders, anxiety disorders, self- harming behaviors, and/or personality disorders. An individualized treatment approach can be designed to offer support and insight to your families within this co-occurrence of disorders. Such treatment approach draws from several modalities as appropriate to our clients’ treatment needs including: cognitive behavioral, psychodynamic, trauma based, spiritual, existential, experiential, and 12-step facilitation.
The basic goal of eating disorder therapy is to help clients learn to understand the function their eating disorder serves for them; to help them understand the relationship between mood and food; to learn healthy ways to cope with stress; and to improve relationships with self, family, and friends.
Symptoms of Eating Disorder
Symptoms of eating disorders may include: dysfunctional eating behaviors, disordered eating patterns, experimentation with disordered eating or purging, and/or repeated episodes of bingeing, restricting, and purging (vomiting, laxatives, and/or over-exercising).
Group formats provide teenagers a place to find support and learn to express themselves in a safe place. Various group topics will include body image, social pressures, peer pressures, family issues, nutrition, and identity development. The groups will explore core issues around dysfunctional eating and will support the kids to help them discover the function that their eating disorder symptoms serve for them. The facilitators will work with the teens to help them learn how to identify, clarify, express, and cope with their feelings in healthy and mindful ways.
On the other hand, individualized program may be required when some kids have co-occurring disorders such as mood disorders or substance abuse issues, while other kids may identify only with eating disorder issues.
The assessment process includes an initial intake assessment provided by a licensed psychologist to be followed by a consultation assessment with our registered dietician for those who continue in our program.
An Insight on Eating Disorder Programs
Eating Disorder Programs usually include:
Process Groups (focus on disordered eating and body image issues – using psychodynamic, cognitive behavioral and art therapy techniques)
Individual therapy (unless working with a therapist and we will consult together)
Family therapy and/or Multi-Family Therapy
Individual Nutritional Consultation
Based on program attendance (1-3 afternoons per week) other group offerings include:
Mindful Eating (Facilitated by Registered Dietician)
Mind-body Connection Yoga (with a certified yoga instructor) +
Process group: (following yoga a therapist led process group to discuss the connection to the body and what stirs up psychologically)
Cognitive Behavioral/ Writing/Journaling Group
Psychodrama / Art Therapy
At Insight Treatment Program we understand that human beings have many needs – psychological, emotional, spiritual, and physiological. The goal of our integrated treatment approach is to help your teen and family heal within a bio-psycho-social perspective. We focus on areas such as affect regulation, communication, boundaries, dependency, intimacy, trust, attachment, spirituality, and the tasks of adolescent development including development of abstract thinking, coping skills (decision making, problem solving, conflict resolution), belief systems, identity exploration, emotional experiences, supportive friendships, and renegotiation of relationships with adults. For more information call us at (818) 501-3512.