Eating disorders commonly arise during adolescence. Anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder are characterized by an obsessive preoccupation with food and each result in unique, but serious complications and health risks. At McCallum Place we specialize in treating eating disorders in teens. Our program is specifically developed for adolescents by child and adolescent board certified psychiatrists and family physicians. While in treatment our young patients are under the care of those who specialize in the treatment of children and adolescents. If you are a parent who feels that your adolescent may be suffering from an eating disorder please call our intake department for a free and confidential conversation about your child’s health and well-being.
Adolescent Eating Disorder Diagnosis
Identifying eating disorders in a teenager can be difficult as teens are undergoing many changes relating to their physical and emotional development. In addition, preteens and teens are becoming more indulgent with food and meals. It is common for teens to experiment with diet fads and other types of eating behaviors. However, an eating disorder is a serious psychiatric disorder that can lead to dangerous health risks, including medical complications and suicidal risks. Parents who suspect that their child may be suffering from an eating disorder should pay attention to their teen’s eating habits and behaviors. In general, the major signs of an eating disorder in teens include engaging in potentially unhealthy weight control practices and/or obsessive thinking about food, weight, body shape or exercise. Vomiting or laxative use after meals and self injury can become habitual if not interrupted early.
Treatment for Adolescent Eating Disorders
Based on the amount of time that a person has been suffering from an eating disorder and the level to which the disorder has progressed, adolescents may require varied amounts of supervision ranging from 24 hour residential treatment, partial hospital programs (PHP), or an intensive outpatient program. Our intake department can help you determine the level of care your child requires. Our adolescent program, at all levels of care includes treatment for boys and girls and is exclusively separate from the adult program.
Program Highlights Include;
- Medical and Nutritional restoration and stabilization
- Individual sessions with multidisciplinary treatment team members such as a therapist, dietitian, Board-certified Adolescent Psychiatrist, and Board-certified Adolescent Medicine Physician.
- Personalized daily schedules including activities such as academics, experiential activities, and balanced exercise
- Supervised meal times
- Life skills training including meal preparation and supported meal outings
- Group therapy and treatment sessions
- A focus on rehabilitation while working towards an ideal energy and exercise balance
School in Treatment
McCallum Place provides an educational program for our adolescents and young adults. Each educational plan is customized according to the patient’s school’s curriculum. We act as liaison between the patient and their school by communicating on a weekly basis with counselors and teachers. Individual needs are addressed and materials are modified to ensure student success in our adaptable educational environment. Educational support is provided five days a week with additional independent study times available on the weekends. Our classroom environment is a bright and spacious area that is conducive to small groups and individual work. Students are encouraged to bring their own devices( laptops, IPADs etc) for educational purposes. We can provide loaners if these aren’t available.
The McCallum Place teachers collaborate with the patient’s treatment team to plan for how their specific eating disorder impacts their learning and to ensure the whole patient is supported. Providing an individualized program like the one here at McCallum Place is very important so that the patients can successfully transition back to school without losing ground.
If a patient requires educational support during the summer months, that is available. For the students who are completed with school for the school year our typical summer program blends volunteer outings within the community, team building activities to encourage positive group dynamics and various lessons from Life Planning Education: A Youth Development Program.
Family Participation in Adolescent Eating Disorder Treatment
Family participation is important in helping a teen achieve recovery. We understand that eating disorder education and support is a vital component for the family members. McCallum Place includes the following types of family involvement in adolescent eating disorder treatment programs.
- Families of adolescent eating disorder patients are encouraged to attend one individual psychotherapy session each week for updated information on your child’s progress, provide support, and process family and relationship dynamics.
- Family Group Sessions are provided weekly for parents and family members to learn about supporting teens in treatment and to ask questions or voice concerns.
- Family Support Groups are offered every Monday evening at 4:30pm and are facilitated by our leadership team.
- Family Day is an all-day event that is hosted monthly as an educational and experiential event for families learning how to support a loved one through treatment.