Anorexia Treatment

Anorexia Treatment Plan

The Highlands provides a highly individualized anorexia treatment plan because we know this is the best way to assure a successful recovery for our clients with anorexia. A client receives a customized treatment plan for anorexia in each level of care at The Highlands. Our professional clinicians carefully evaluate the medical, psychological and nutritional needs of the client, and use this information to develop a completely customized care plan. Flexibility is part of each plan, because as clients improve, other areas require more or less focus. Each client at The Highlands  is under the primary care of a team of professionally trained and certified primary team of experts. This team includes a therapist, dietitian, nurse, psychologist, and psychiatrist. Other clinicians provide additional individualized therapy, but the overall treatment plan is guided by the primary team. Our professional team is experienced not only in eating disorders, but in a wide variety of additional specialties, including self-harm behaviors, anxiety, sexual disorders, suicidality, and trauma.

Completely Customized Anorexia Treatment Plan

Clients take part in treatment at our beautiful residential treatment center located in the upscale Greystone neighborhood of Birmingham, Alabama. Located in a private medical park, our treatment center is warm, welcoming, and designed to enhance the therapeutic experience of our clients and their families. Each treatment plan for anorexia integrates family therapy, which has been documented as an essential part of a successful recovery. Each client’s anorexia treatment plan has a medical, therapeutic, and nutritional component. Clients receive compassionate, non-judgmental care throughout the entire treatment process. Trust is elemental to recovery, and our clinicians take the time and care necessary for trusting therapeutic relationships to develop. The Highlands’ treatment approaches for anorexia include:
  • Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)
  • Interpersonal Therapy (IT)
  • Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PE), Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing Therapy  (EMDR), and Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT)for Trauma
  • Exposure Therapy for OCD and other anxiety disorders
  • Family Based Therapy for Adolescent Anorexia (FBT)
  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT is important for clients with the co-occurring disorders of anxiety and depression)
  • Internal Family Systems (IFS)
  • Primary individual Therapy, with additional special-focus treatment by other clinicians
  • Group therapy sessions for educational, therapeutic, nutritional, and skills development
  • Expressive therapies, such as creative movement and art therapy, provide outlets for emotions and stressors that are difficult to verbalize
  • Relapse prevention and aftercare planning
  • Guided transition through the continuum of care
  • Real-life skills development and daily opportunity to use these skills
The primary dietitian provides an individualized meal plan based on the clients nutritional and therapy needs. In addition, meal processing and educational components are integrated throughout the treatment program. Normalization of weight is another essential goal of treatment. Clients work together with their primary clinicians to identify goals and objectives, and then implement specific tasks to meet these goals. This process is highly client-centered and individualized.

Co-occurring Issues are Included in the Treatment Plan for Anorexia

Co-occurring disorders are also addressed in the anorexia treatment plan, and are treated simultaneously. This is important, because as eating disorder behaviors are no longer utilized to help a client cope or maintain control, co-occurring issues may escalate. Common co-occurring issues include:
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder)
  • OCD (Obsessive-compulsive Disorder)
  • Social anxiety and social phobias
  • Self-harm behaviors and suicidality
  • Trauma related issues
  • Bipolar Disorder
Substance abuse and other addictions are ways that individual’s may also use to cope with underlying issues. The Highlands’ skilled clinicians carefully evaluate clients for these issues, and adapt their treatment plan for anorexia to simultaneously address addiction problems. Research shows that concurrent treatment of eating disorders with any co-occurring problems is essential for sustained recovery to be possible.