Mary Woods

One Hour AT A Time

Mary Woods

  • Broken Mirrors: Helping Women See Themselves Clearly

Broken Mirrors: Helping Women See Themselves Clearly

Monday 31st December 2007

Learn from Dr. Kimberly Dennis and Dr. Sheldon Miller as they share their knowledge and experience on eating disorders and mental health. Listen to One Hour at a Time podcast now on alcoholfree.com.
57 minutes
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One Hour AT A Time
Author:
Mary Woods
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Sobriety Toolkit
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Recovery from Trauma
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Breaking Free from Eating Disorders: Insights from Two Experts

I want to emphasize how serious the anorexic disorder really is.
Breaking Free from Eating Disorders: Insights from Two Experts
In an episode of One Hour at a Time, Dr. Kimberly Dennis and Dr. Sheldon Miller shared their knowledge and experience on eating disorders and mental health. Dr. Dennis is the Associate Medical Director at Timberline Knolls, while Dr. Miller is the Medical Director for Timberline Knolls, a residential treatment center in Chicago for women with eating and other emotional disorders.
The episode started with a brief overview of eating disorders and their prevalence. Dr. Dennis explained that there are three diagnoses for eating disorders: anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder. She also shared that eating disorders are not just about food, but are linked to how individuals perceive their bodies and body image. Dr. Miller emphasized that eating disorders are not pure, and that individuals with eating disorders often have co-occurring mental illnesses and substance abuse problems.
The experts discussed the holistic approach in psychiatry practice, which Timberline Knolls is known for. They explained that the treatment center uses evidence-based, outcome-supported practices, expressive therapy activities, educational achievement, and consistent focus on social, emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical elements of care. They also mentioned that family therapy is a crucial part of treatment for individuals with eating disorders, particularly adolescents who will be going back home and living with their families after treatment.
Dr. Dennis and Dr. Miller talked about the role of self-image in eating habits. They mentioned that eating disorders are often diseases of isolation, and that most women with eating disorders feel different from other women. They also highlighted the dangers of equating thinness with beauty and womanhood, and how this perception can lead to self-destructive behaviors. Dr. Dennis shared that she often reminds her adolescent patients that most women with eating disorders regain their fertility once they are maintaining a healthy weight.
The experts also touched on the topic of eating disorders and co-occurring mental illnesses. They explained that individuals with eating disorders often have other mental illnesses such as anxiety, depression, and trauma. Dr. Miller emphasized the importance of recognizing that eating disorders are not just about food and that they often occur with other disorders. He also shared that almost all of his adolescent anorexic patients ask for Ritalin and Adderall because they believe they have attention deficit disorder.
The episode ended with a discussion on treatment and recovery from eating disorders. Dr. Dennis and Dr. Miller shared that recovery is possible, but it requires a comprehensive and individualized treatment plan. Dr. Dennis emphasized that anorexia nervosa is a very serious disorder, and that individuals with this disorder often have electrolyte imbalances and low cardiac status. Dr. Miller highlighted the importance of ongoing treatment and reminded listeners that eating disorders are complex problems that require specialized care.
If you or someone you know is struggling with an eating disorder or co-occurring mental illness, it is important to seek professional help. Listen to the full episode of One Hour at a Time on alcoholfree.com to learn more about eating disorders and the holistic approach to treatment and recovery.