August 1, 2016 by Castlewood Treatment Center in Anorexia Nervosa, Binge Eating Disorder, Bulimia Nervosa, Eating Disorder Treatment Frequently, we talk about the concept of stigma as it relates to eating disorders. Though countless men and women, boys and girls struggle daily with eating disorders—and some of them lose their lives because of it—there remains much misinformation about what eating disorders are, and how they affect body and mind. People do not feel comfortable speaking honestly or openly about eating disorders. As such, those who struggle often feel like they must do so in silence, never seeking the treatment they deserve.
This breaks our hearts, because we know how dangerous eating disorders are, but also how much treatment can work. Recovery is possible for anyone who seeks the right clinical intervention. That is the message of hope we try to share, and it is why we are so passionate about spreading eating disorder awareness. Speaking honestly and openly about eating disorder recovery could literally be life-saving.
There is No Time to Waste
Eating disorders aren’t necessarily obvious. Quick: what does a person with an eating disorder look like? You may be tempted to say something about a young Caucasian girl, but the truth is that eating disorders are equal opportunity offenders; in fact, they are disproportionately common among gay men, and also occur in teenagers, the elderly, and across racial demographics. While there are some signs and symptoms you can look for, those who struggle with eating disorders can often do a great job of hiding it. The bottom line: There may be people in your life who struggle with eating disorders, so it’s important that you’re aware of how to identify them, and how to help them.
Eating disorders are complicated—and not always easy to understand. In fact, at Castlewood, we constantly get questions about what causes easing disorders, or why eating disorders occur. Science still has not fully explained the different factors that contribute to eating disorders, though we are learning more and more about the psychological and biological components. By raising awareness, we hope that we can bring more attention and, thus, more understanding, even from within the clinical community.
Eating disorders are deadly. Yes, this is the main reason why we tackle awareness-raising with such urgency. It is quite literally a matter of life and death. Did you know, just to name one example, that 20 percent of those who suffer from anorexia ultimately die from either medical complications or suicide? This is not just about food or about feelings. Human lives are at stake, and that is something we must talk about—urgently.
Treatment works, and recovery is possible. While the stakes are high, the outcome is by no means sure, nor does the prognosis have to be grim. People live with eating disorders because they feel like they have no other choice; because they feel like there is no hope, nothing that can be done to help them. This is not true. Treatment works! The outcomes are proven. By seeking the right clinical intervention, anyone can get free from their eating disorder. No one is too far gone, or in too deep, for recovery to be possible.
That, ultimately, is the message that defines us at Castlewood. It is a message of hope: no matter how bleak your eating disorder may seem, you can find freedom and recovery, so long as you seek treatment. That is a message that carries great urgency, and it is what we ultimately want to raise awareness for, among anyone and everyone who needs to hear it.
Ready to start your recovery journey? Contact us today.