What is Binge Eating Disorder?
Binge eating disorder treatment at Eating Disorder Solutions in Dallas, Texas focuses on a multi-disciplinary approach to client care, which has been shown to be the most successful long-term. This means that care will come from medical health care providers as well as from mental health professionals, dietitians and others who can help individuals effectively address their binge eating, unhealthy diets and unwelcome emotions.
Although binge eating disorder, also called BED, is the most recently recognized eating disorder, it’s the most prevalent eating disorder in the United States, affecting up to 5% of men, women and teenagers. Overeating habits can create many uncomfortable and dangerous physical symptoms over time. BED also creates many distressing mental symptoms that must also be addressed during binge eating disorder treatment. By getting to the root of the problem, BED treatment can often be highly successful especially when treatment management is long-term.
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Binge Eating Treatment Options
To reach this goal, clients will undergo several key treatments, which will be individualized for their needs. Some of the most common binge eating disorder treatments practiced at Eating Disorder Solutions include the following:
This highly individualized therapy is done one-on-one with a psychiatrist who can help clients explore their emotions and learn how they affect their eating behaviors. During this type of therapy, individuals can learn how to change their negative thinking patterns so that they can avoid triggers to binge eating.
Another type of in-depth group or individual therapy that helps clients discover the root problems or emotions leading them to binge eat. These therapy sessions can also give clients options for eating healthfully and mindfully during stressful times as well as coping mechanisms that can help them make healthier dietary choices.
Lets clients learn from others who are struggling with the same problems as they are and who are undergoing a similar type of binge eating disorder treatment. While individual therapy is important, group therapy provides clients with a strong and lasting support network.
Helps to build strong support networks that will be in place once the client completes the residential binge eating treatment program. This therapy will also continue during outpatient treatments. Family therapy is important for clients of all ages, but is particularly helpful for teenagers who need a safe place to turn.
Binge eating disorder treatment does not focus strongly on weight loss initially because the excessive weight will come off naturally as clients turn to healthier meals and portion sizes. Therefore, nutritional counseling with the help of a registered dietitian is particularly important for teaching proper daily nutrition and for removing trigger foods from the individual’s diet.
Eating Disorder Solutions is the best choice when it comes to binge eating disorder treatment in Dallas, Texas because we focus on our clients’ unique needs by creating well-rounded, individualized care plans. Our client-centered programs do not treat all clients alike. Instead, we realize that each person has a different background, different triggers and different emotional needs that must be taken into account during their treatment.
By focusing on individualized goals in both our residential treatment program as well as our outpatient program, we can address all aspects of each client’s physical and emotional needs. First, we ensure that they discover a healthier relationship with food. This may include giving up dieting, listening to bodily cues for hunger, eating regular meals and eating mindfully. Second, we help our clients stay away from emotional eating. Individuals will learn how to recognize triggers to their binge eating and will discover healthier ways of dealing with unwelcome emotions. Finally, members of the program learn how healthy habits of daily living can help them as they continue on their BED treatment journey. Lowering stress, getting enough sleep, exercising regularly and making time for social events can all help.
Binge Eating Signs & Symptoms
Because of the large quantities of food typically eaten, many clients seeking binge eating disorder treatment have above-normal weights, although some remain at normal weights due to their constant dieting. One of the best ways to recognize when a loved one needs treatment is to know the most common signs and symptoms of this eating disorder. Many individuals recognize these symptoms in themselves, but may feel too much shame to seek treatment. Therefore, it is often up to family and friends to encourage those suffering to seek binge eating disorder treatment.
Many behavioral signs and symptoms are quite easy for people close to the individual to see. For example, common signs often include:
- Frequently eating very large amounts of food in short periods
- Eating until the individual is overwhelmingly full
- Eating in secret
- Eating constantly rather than at regular mealtimes
- Trying to hide food
- Constantly being on a diet without making any progress
In addition, because binge eating disorder is also a mental illness, many emotional symptoms may also be present. These most often include the following:
- Great embarrassment and shame
- Constant guilt
- Lack of emotions during the binging episode
If BED is allowed to progress without treatment, it could result in several serious physical complications, especially in those who are overweight:
- Heart disease
- Gastrointestinal distress
- High cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Gallbladder disease
- Sleep apnea
- Menstrual cycle issues
- Decreased mobility
- Electrolyte imbalances
- Certain cancers
Many people with binge eating disorder also have concurrent mental illnesses, such as depression, anxiety, or obsessive-compulsive disorder. They may also abuse alcohol or drugs, making their symptoms much worse. BED along with these concurrent issues can create a very poor quality of life, can destroy key relationships and can cause trouble at work. Binge eating treatment must focus on both physical and emotional manifestations of the disorder as well as on the mental roots of the problem to be effective.
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Causes of Binge Eating
Like many eating disorders, the causes of binge eating disorder can be difficult to pin down because of the many factors that affect clients diagnosed with it. Many individuals will have several factors that greatly increase their risk of developing the disorder. In order for binge eating disorder treatment to be effective, all of these factors must be successfully addressed.
A number of underlying physical and mental factors are usually associated with BED. These may include genetics, a family history of eating disorders, past and present psychological struggles, social influences and relational turmoil, among others. In particular, research has shown major evidence that binge eating disorder is often inherited from parents. Therefore, the genetic link often shows up in a strong family history of eating disorders. Another major factor is underlying mental disorders. Many people receiving binge eating disorder treatment are dealing with concurrent mental illness diagnoses, such as substance abuse, depression or anxiety. Some other causes could include the following:
- Age, often happening earlier in life for women and during midlife for men
- Gender, occurring more frequently in women than in men
- History of dieting
- History of increased stress or trauma, such as sexual or physical abuse or a recent death in the family
- Poor body image
- Relational issues with close family or friends
- Bullying at school, at work or through social media
The multi-faceted approach to binge eating disorder treatment that we offer at Eating Disorder Solutions is able to address each of these causes. By getting to the root of the problem, clients are better equipped to see long-term success.
Binge Eating Disorder Diagnosis
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, five criteria must be met for an individual to be diagnosed with binge eating disorder. These include the following:
A psychiatrist or psychologist will make the official diagnosis using the DSM-5. However, a medical practitioner will also run several diagnostic health tests to determine which if any underlying health conditions also exist. For example, a doctor will complete a physical assessment and will run several blood and urine tests to check for electrolyte imbalances, protein in the urine and similar concerns. The practitioner will also take special note of blood pressure readings and cholesterol levels, which could indicate a heart condition. In addition, he or she may refer the client for a sleep center evaluation to check for sleep apnea particularly if the client is overweight. Once underlying conditions are identified and the DSM-5 evaluation is completed, the health care team at Eating Disorder Solutions will be able to craft an individualized binge eating treatment plan.
1. Regular times of binge eating, defined as eating large amounts of food in a two-hour period and as a lack of control while eating
2. Binge eating periods during which the individual feels uncomfortably full, eats when not feeling hungry, eats despite embarrassment over the amount of food and feels guilty or depressed after eating
3. A feeling of deep unhappiness over binge eating
4. Binge eating episodes that occur at least once per week for a minimum of three months
5. No compensatory methods, such as purging or fasting used, which indicates that neither anorexia or bulimia is present
Get Binge Eating Disorder Help Today
It can be hard for individuals to admit to having binge eating episodes. However, at Eating Disorder Solutions, we offer safe solutions that respect our clients’ privacy and that treat all clients as individuals. Anyone seeking binge eating disorder treatments for themselves or for a loved one can rest assured that our residential and outpatient programs focus on client-centered care plans provided in a secure yet welcoming environment.
Without immediate help, binge eating disorder can lead to major physical and psychological health complications. Turn to our binge eating disorder treatment program at Eating Disorder Solutions today to find long-term solutions for creating a healthier relationship with food, decreasing the guilt and depression that often come along with BED, and begin a journey to full health and wellness of the body and mind. Contact us today to get started.