What Are Some Controversies on the Treatments of Eating Disorders?

Question by oyglik: What are some controversies on the treatments of eating disorders?
what type of treatment is the most effective? Or what are some controverisies?
need to do this for a research essay and having troubles with it.
please provide a source and information thank you!

Best answer:

Answer by Mags
Because of the way you asked this question, I have to warn you, this is not my homework assignment – the areas which must be covered are huge, I will provide several links throughout my notes below. This should help you write your paper.

There is no single treatment for eating disorder. Obesity is also considered an eating disorder with very difficult solutions but we can begin with anorexia and bulimia and BED (Binge Eating Disorder).

Please read the article below as it has an excellent table of possible risk factors which include Biological, Psychological, Developmental and Social Factors which contribute to these conditions and also help to explain why there is no one-stop treatment.

Let’s define the conditions: “Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder that involves an inability to stay at the minimum body weight considered healthy for the person’s age and height. Persons with this disorder may have an intense fear of weight gain, even when they are underweight. They may use extreme dieting, excessive exercise, or other methods to lose weight.” per a New York Times article.

Bulimia can be a double threat because it “is an illness in which a person binges on food or has regular episodes of significant overeating and feels a loss of control. The affected person then uses various methods — such as vomiting or laxative abuse — to prevent weight gain.
Many (but not all) people with bulimia also have anorexia nervosa.”

Both anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa are considered to be mental health issues. It is also important to know that they have a very high death rate – of between 18-20%. It is 12x higher than the total of all other conditions combined for females between 15-24 years of age per a 1999 publication by Carolyn Cavanaugh, “What We Know about Eating Disorders: facts and statistics”.

Eating disorders are judged to be the 3rd most common disorder in teenage girls per the Canadian Paediatric Society.

Although we tend to think that it is the girls who want to emulate models who have the highest risk, it is actually female athletes who have a prevalence between 15-62% per “The Eating Source Book” by Carolyn Costin.

One thing that is known is that the earlier the treatment/intervention, the better the chances for a positive outcome.

Because girls as young as 10 years of age have been found with eating disorders, there are additional threats to the health and normal body maturation of this children. Many disorders seem to begin with a fear of being fat – a fear so great that it outranks the fear of cancer, war or parental loss.

Boys are not exempt from eating disorders and in Canada 1 in 5 10th grade boys were either already dieting or planned to do so.

In terms of obesity, it is known that about 95% of people who diet tend to regain their lost weight within 5 years.

With anorexia, bulimia and BED treatment is on three fronts. The first is to try to restore the health and weight of the patient so that they don’t die before treatment ends. Counseling is necessary for a prolonged period of time to deal with the varied issues which seem to be at the root of the problems. After this or during it, medications can be prescribed.

Because hospitalization seems to be the best way to control the environment, it is the favored treatment but it is extraordinarily expensive and can literally destroy the financial health of the families. Since a team of specialists is required – psychiatrist, nutritionist, primary care physician, the cost of hospitalization can run as much as $ 30,000 per month. Most of this expense must be paid by the family because the longer term care for these chronic (long-term) conditions are not covered sufficiently by hospitalization/health insurance. Patients may require repeated hospitalization

Home care is a possibility but it is not without emotional cost. And in some cases, financial cost.

One of the biggest areas of controversy is the financial cost for treatment which may ultimately fail.

Another controversy is the fact that society has bought in to some very unhealthy values concerning appearance over health. This is not new but it is an in-your-face daily bombardment with commercials, magazines, online images, movies, the fashion industry, our competitive sports focus,

additional reading:

Sample programs:

You will find some helpful information at the blog below, “Eating Disorder Treatment Options For Beginners”

Know better? Leave your own answer in the comments!



New Year's Dieting Resolutions and Expectations

Filed under: eating disorder statistics

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