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Eating Disorders: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Decent Essays
Eating disorders anorexia and bulimia have many overlapping, complex factors. Treatment often involved psychotherapy such as CBT, but bulimia can also be medicated with SRIs. However, leaving eating disorders untreated can come with consequences. Research by Steinhausen (2009) found that individuals with anorexia have a mortality rate that is 18 times higher than their peers who do not. This essay aims to compare and contrast a treatment for each disorder, beginning with DSM 5 definition of each and it’s diagnosis criteria. Anorexia is categorised as a restriction of ‘energy intake’ (calories), leading to significantly low body weight, an intense fear of weight gain and disturbance in how an individual perceives their shape or weight. There…show more content…
However there has been much less research for its effect when used with anorexics, as the sample size has been too small. Similarly, the effects of CBT compared with the medication fluoxetine, used to treat depression and OCD, were studied (Halmi et al., 2005) but as the medication alone condition was rejected by a high percentage of the group, an analysis was not possible. Studies into combined treatment for bulimia using CBT and medication found that there was no more effectiveness in addressing eating disorder behaviours than using CBT alone. However, combined treatment was found to improve the comorbid conditions such as depression (Walsh et al., 2000). Alternatively, interpersonal therapy can be used to help patient identify their current interpersonal problems than maintain their disorder. NICE (2004) recommend this treatment as an alternative to CBT as it takes a nondirect approach to the individuals eating disorder symptoms. A study by Fairburn et al., (1993) found that ITP was inferior to CBT post treatment, but equally as effective at one and six year follow
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