Eating disorders are mental health conditions that affect how a person sees themselves physically, altering their perception of body image, weight, and size. This, in turn, affects the way a person with an eating disorder eats and consumes nutrition. As eating disorders alter the way a person eats, many people associate eating disorders with the negative, physical side effects that come with them. However, not only do eating disorders bring about physical side effects, but they also bring about negative mental health side effects. Therefore, it’s important that people in eating disorder recovery not only focus on what and how their eating to avoid physical side effects of eating disorders, but also focus on their mental health in order to overcome debilitating mental health side effects as well.
Eating Disorders ARE Mental Health Disorders
While most people think of eating disorders as physical conditions as they can affect a person physically, they are classified as mental health disorders. Furthermore, in many cases, people who are living with an eating disorder also are living with concurring mental health issues. For example, many people who have an eating disorder are also living with a depressive disorder, anxiety disorder, etc. In fact, according to research, almost all (97%) of the people living with eating disorders have concurring mental health conditions.
Some of the statistics of concurring mental health issues that come with eating disorders include:
- most people with eating disorders and other mental health issues struggle with depressive disorders (94%)
- 20% of people with eating disorders and concurring mental health issues have OCD
- 22% of people with eating disorders and concurring mental health issues struggle with substance use disorder
- 56% of people with an eating disorder and concurring mental health issues have an anxiety disorder
- 22% of people with an eating disorder and concurring mental health issues have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Combining Mental Health Treatment and Eating Disorder Treatment Together
Since mental health issues are so prominent in people who are diagnosed with eating disorders, it’s essential that these individuals have access to care that provides them with treatment for both eating disorders and other mental health issues they face. As mental health issues can play a part in stimulating disordered eating behaviors, treatment must include help for concurring mental health issues. Otherwise, people who are living with eating disorders and concurring mental health issues have a higher chance of relapsing and eventually reverting back to disordered eating behaviors. So, certainly, it is crucial for eating disorder treatment to address other, concurring mental health issues along with eating disorders.
Dual Diagnosis Treatment for Eating Disorder Recovery
Willow Place for Women understands that many of the women struggling with eating disorders also are living with concurring mental health issues. That’s why we offer dual diagnosis support in the form of trauma education and treatment, substance use treatment, and more. Additionally, we provide a number of methods when it comes to treatment including both traditional methods and holistic methods of therapy and care. This way, individuals can find the best and more effective treatments that work for them in order to obtain lasting mental health and eating disorder recovery.
Find out more about our eating disorder treatment programs and dual diagnosis care from our website today.