Treatment for bulimia includes behavioral therapy and, in some cases, medication. Accessing appropriate treatment as soon as possible can minimize associated medical complications, reduce disordered behavior and increase long-term recovery rates.
Antidepressants can also be used in the treatment of bulimia. Fluoxetine is the only medication approved by the FDA for treatment specific to bulimia. Studies have shown that it may reduce episodes of binge eating and purging. While medication can help manage bulimia, behavioral therapy remains critical to full recovery.
At Walden, adults, adolescent and children receive specialized treatment, with full access to all levels of care. Regardless of your background, individual needs or severity of the disorder, you will have the personalized care and support you need.
Individual, family and group therapy – including art, relaxation, movement and yoga – are important parts of our treatment approach. You’ll have a dedicated multidisciplinary treatment team of doctors, nurse practitioners, nurses, dietitians, counselors, social workers, expressive therapists and mental health counselors. They’ve worked with thousands of patients with bulimia, helping them on the road to recovery.
Walden’s treatment for bulimia is based on evidence-based practices and skills training, which are proven to yield a higher rate of positive outcomes. This includes:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) – This is often viewed as the standard of treatment for bulimia. It helps individuals identify, interrupt and replace distorted thinking and associated compensatory behavior with positive thinking.
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) – DBT combines CBT techniques with mindful meditation to help you discover new ways to manage emotions and develop a more positive self-image.
- Family-Based Treatment (FBT) – Designed for adolescents, FBT brings the family to the forefront of the clinical team. We work with parents and families to restore weight and a positive adolescent identity through a coordinated three-phase approach.
Comprehensive Levels of Care for Every Stage of Your Recovery
Walden offers a full system of care – with specialized treatment options at all levels. No matter your background or individual needs, and regardless of the complexity of your disorder, Walden will provide the personalized care and support you need.
Our continuum of care includes treatment at all levels:
- Inpatient Hospitalization
- Partial Hospitalization
- Intensive Outpatient
As treatment progresses, patients have opportunities to use the skills they’ve learned in real-world situations, including meal preparation/cooking and outings. These outings help to identify recovery challenges, process fears and urges and determine readiness for entry into a lower level of care with greater autonomy.
Getting Started: Intake Assessment
Help for bulimia is always a quick and confidential phone call away.
We will conduct a brief (10 to 15 minute) telephone intake, during which we will review your concerns and gather basic background, medical and insurance information. From there, we will determine whether a more detailed, in-person clinical evaluation is required at the Walden location closest to you.
The evaluation will be conducted by a member of Walden’s clinical staff and will include a psychiatric assessment, an in-depth review of clinical information and a recommendation for the proper level of care. Primary care referrals are not required and we will work with your insurance provider (or providers) for approval of bulimia treatment.
Remember, this entire assessment will be confidential, and we will make it as easy and comfortable for you as possible.
Whole Health Approach
Bulimia is an incredibly complex condition, with many medical, behavioral and nutritional factors. At Walden, we provide comprehensive treatment that addresses all facets of the disorder, while providing superior care across several areas, including:
- Medical Care (restoring a body weight in the context of age, sex, developmental trajectory and physical health)
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
- Family-Based Treatment (FBT)
- Mindfulness Therapy
- Individual and Group Counseling
- Nutritional Counseling
- Expressive Therapy
- Relapse Prevention
Role of Family
For adolescents in particular, involving family in treatment can often increase its effectiveness and improve recovery rates.
At Walden, we take family-based treatment (FBT) to a new level. We empower each family to become the best support system and advocate for their child. In fact, we often refer to families as active participants on our treatment team. In our lower levels of care, families attend treatment sessions and take charge of making food decisions for their child. There is no blame for why bulimia is impacting their family.
We always try our best to keep the adolescent at home during treatment. If inpatient or residential care is recommended, we seek to minimize the length of stay. In the end, the adolescent is restabilized and begins to grow through an independent phase.
Regain Your Life. Walden Can Help.
If you are concerned that you – or a loved one – may have an eating disorder, we are here to help. Please call 781-647-6727 to speak with a Walden eating disorders intake specialist, or complete the form on this page, to start the road to recovery.
Insurance for Bulimia Treatment
Walden is proud to be “in network” with most insurance providers and managed care companies. This means adolescents and adults with bulimia can have flexible and cost-efficient access to the treatment they need. Click here for a list of organizations with which Walden has contractual relationships.