Eating disorders are more common than you might think. They come in various levels of severity, and there are many ways to treat them. Some patients do just fine with outpatient therapy and a few doctors' visits here and there. Other patients really need more intensive, inpatient, residential treatment to recover effectively. So how do you know whether you or a loved one is ready for residential care? Here are a few key signs this is the best treatment approach for you.
Your weight is dangerously low.
Eating disorders are primarily mental health events, but they do affect the body physically. The lower your body weight gets due to an eating disorder, the more physical danger you tend to be in. If you're severely underweight, treating your eating disorder becomes a far more urgent matter. Enrolling in a residential treatment program ensures you'll have medical care there when you need it, along with mental health professionals there to help you manage the underlying causes.
Your habits are closely tied to your environment.
Eating disorders tend to cause patients to develop specific habits and routines around food. In some cases, these might be closely tied to your environment. Maybe there is a specific fast food restaurant on your street where you always order takeout and binge. Or maybe there's a specific chair you sit in while you binge at home. In cases like this, getting out of the environment you're in can be key to healing. Residential treatment is a great way to do that. You'll have an easier time healing without these environmental triggers. And when you do return home, it will be with better skills to cope.
You don't have a lot of supportive people at home.
Recovering from an eating disorder is hard to do on your own. You need family members and friends in your corner to support you and lend a helpful hand. If you don't have this support at home, then enrolling in a residential treatment facility can be a good choice. You'll have access to people who can be in your corner, help you learn new habits, and help you feel less alone.
Residential treatment is not for everyone, but it can work well for many eating disorder patients. If you are in any of the situations above, it is definitely something to look into. Contact some eating disorder treatment facilities near you, and learn more about their programs.