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Independent expert answers
on psychiatry and psychology

How Clinics for Eating Disorders Work

Abstract: How do clinics for eating disorders work? What kind of methods do they use, what kind of expertise do they have?

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How Clinics for Eating Disorders Work

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Question(s): 
Written by: Gunborg Palme, certified psychologist and certified psychotherapist, teacher and tutor in psychotherapy.
First version: 22 Jul 2008.
Latest revision: 13 Aug 2008.

How do clinics for eating disorders work? What kind of methods do they use, what kind of expertise do they have?

Answer:

The larger clinics for eating disorders often have a team of experts on different methods of treatment:

  • Psychotherapists/psychologists
  • Doctors and psychiatrists
  • Dieticians
  • Nurses

The treatment begins by making an inventory of the patient's problems. In the case of serious conditions e.g., risk of physical illnesses, patients are treated in hospital. The control and supervision that can be administrated in a hospital may be necessary for these patients. The treatment is structured and controlled so that they have to eat in a better way.

In the case of minor problems, constraining methods are not necessary, nor desirable. Hospitalising the patients is not necessary. They can be dealt with as outpatients, e.g., by weekly visits to a therapist. Psychotherapy is often more effective when it is combined with medicine. More.

Psychotherapists working in this area, who are in private practice, use a circle of expert contacts when needed.

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