The majority of people who receive treatment for their eating disorders do recover and go on to fulfill healthy, meaningful lives.
The Center for Eating Disorders at Sheppard Pratt is an evidence-based program which means we follow practice guidelines and have developed our treatment protocols based on the most comprehensive research regarding positive outcomes and recovery rates. This includes a strong Cognitive Behavior Therapy component at every level of care and the integration of Family-Based Treatment as well as other evidence-based therapies.
Seeking help early is best...but it’s never too late to decide you’re ready to HEAL.
Research and clinical experience shows repeatedly that outcomes improve greatly with early-intervention. Seeking treatment within the first 1-3 years of onset of illness can significantly impact prognosis and chances for recovery. One study of patients with bulimia nervosa found those who received treatment within the first 5 years of their illness had a recovery rate of 80%. The patients who waited more than 15 years after their symptoms started to get treatment, experienced recovery rates closer to 20%. (Reas et al, 2000).
That being said, the great thing about recovery, no matter when you start, is that it’s always possible and it’s always worth it. At the Center for Eating Disorders we treat a wide age range of patients, including older adults who, despite having struggled with their eating disorder for many years, go on to do very well in treatment and fully embrace the healing process. For individuals who have lived with a debilitating eating disorder for so long, it can be an incredibly freeing and hopeful experience to reach out and ask for help after many years of suffering in silence.
Recovery takes time.
Treatment can take months to years, but early intervention with evidence-based care is improving the prognosis for a new generation of patients. ~ The Eating Disorder Coalition
Regardless of when one starts treatment, every person’s path to recovery may look a little different and outcomes can be affected by a variety of personal and external factors. However, it’s important to know that recovery is rarely a quick or easy process, and most often unfolds over an extended period of time. In one study of patients receiving treatment for Anorexia Nervosa, 76% of the individuals met criteria for full recovery but the amount of time from initial treatment to recovery ranged from 57-74 months (Strober, et al, 1997).
Relapse Prevention on the Road to Recovery
Depending, in part, on how relapse is defined, reported relapse rates in the research range from 9% to 42% (Eckert et al. 1995; Strober et al. 1997), with the greatest risk of relapse occurring during the first year following discharge from initial treatment (Isager et al. 1985; Pike,1998; Herzog et al. 1999). The Center for Eating Disorders provides a stepped-care approach that allows patients to gradually transition through subsequent levels of support and structure to help individuals avoid relapse. We work closely with patients and families during treatment to help them develop their support systems and relapse prevention tools.
Additionally, the Center provides ongoing recovery-focused tools and events to supplement formal treatment and help support people’s individual relapse prevention efforts. These tools include weekly support groups, recovery-focused community events and inspirational guest speakers.
Getting the care and treatment you need
Eating disorders can be successfully and fully treated to complete remission, but only 1 in 10 people with eating disorders receive treatment. ~ The Eating Disorder Coalition
Unfortunately, most individuals with eating disorders never receive treatment. In fact, up to 90% of individuals with eating disorders do not receive the duration or intensity of treatment that their symptoms warrant. Without treatment, chances for recovery decline drastically and individuals who don’t get treatment are more likely to die from their eating disorder. While that is likely a difficult reality to read about, it boldly underlines the importance of reaching out, seeking care and beginning the journey towards recovery.
Taking the first step
At the Center for Eating Disorders, we understand that the decision to seek help and fully invest in treatment can be a difficult one but that, in the pursuit of recovery, it is also a necessary one. From the first phone call, to the day of admission and throughout the treatment process, we are available to answer any questions you may have about the eating disorder, treatment and recovery. CED staff members provide support and recommendations based on our professional knowledge regarding the best possible outcomes for recovery and healing.
Call us at (410) 938-5252 today to get started.