There are various treatments proposed for eating disorders:
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy – focuses on encouraging the person to reach a healthy body weight through the process of healthy eating. Therapy work undertaken covers psychoeducation relating to nutrition, cognitive restructuring, emotional regulation, social skills, body image concern, self-esteem and relapse prevention. The therapy needs to be mindful of the person’s specific development needs, whilst enhancing self-efficacy, and promoting self-monitoring of dietary intake and associated thoughts and feelings.
Family Therapy – this focuses on working with the family as a system and promotes the idea of working with the family’s strengths as a way of overcoming challenges and difficulties. It is non -judgemental and creative and involves all family members where possible. This places the difficulty into the system rather than the person.
Psychodynamic Psychotherapy – this focuses more on emotions and interpersonal processes, and how these affect the eating disorder. The therapy aims to develop a shared understanding of the person’s psychological issues and how they use anorexic behaviour as a coping strategy. At the same time, the young person will be supported in finding alternative strategies to help them manage their stress.
In later stages of treatment issues relating to identity and independence can also be explored.