Binge Eating Disorder Treatment
Binge eating disorder treatment can take several approaches. In short, there are two issues that need to be addressed in the treatment of binge eating disorder: obesity, for people who are overweight from consuming too much food, and binge eating episodes themselves.
Treatment experts differ somewhat in their beliefs about which of these should be tackled first. Here are some of the main treatments for binge eating disorder:
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy - Cognitive behavioural therapy is a type of psychotherapy, in which the individual has regular discussions about their binge eating with a therapist. The discussions will address the negative thoughts the person has about themselves along with their reasons for binge eating, such as low self-esteem, poor body image, depression and anxiety.
They will learn to recognise and monitor the situations that trigger binge eating episodes, and discover how to deal with stress and difficult situations in a way other than by binge eating. Cognitive behavioural therapy aims to eliminate unhealthy eating habits.
Interpersonal Therapy - Interpersonal therapy helps the person to identify and deal with relationship problems that may be occurring with a partner, family member or friend. The aim is to help the person build relationships that are supportive rather than destructive, so that they no longer feel the need to turn to binge eating for emotional comfort.
In some cases antidepressants may be prescribed as part of the treatment for binge eating disorder.
Weight Loss Management Programmes
While many people with binge eating disorder have obesity-related health complications and need to lose weight, it is not usually enough to just 'go on a diet', as this does not address the root cause of the problem.
There are weight loss management programmes, which focus on helping people to lose weight. However, someone with binge eating disorder should only attend such a programme under medical supervision, as dieting itself can lead to binge eating, making matters worse.
The sooner binge eating disorder treatment is sought, the better, as obesity has negative consequences for long-term health, such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and stroke.