Our expert says:
Harmony Addictions Clinic offers specialized programmes for eating disorders, focusing on bulimia, anorexia and compulsive overeating.
Nutritional oversight is provided by leading dieticians in the field of eating disorders. They have consulted at every leading addictions facility in Cape Town.
The purpose of the programme is to treat individuals suffering from eating disorders in a supportive environment. It is managed in the context of the 12 step programme model, in which, eating disorders will be treated as a disease, which, although not curable, can be arrested. Abstinence from maladaptive behaviours, such as starving, bingeing, purging and overeating, is established on entering treatment, within a supportive framework of counsellors and nurses.
Primary care concentrates on establishing a healthier relationship with food, according to a meal plan that has been designed by the nutritionists especially for the client and her/his needs. Both as a behaviour modifications, and as a pre-requisite to restoring correct brain functioning, correct eating patterns are instilled. Individual counselling and group therapy begin the process of understanding the disease, and unlocking the deep the sense of lack of control that the client feels. This requires great skill and happens over a period of weeks, as opposed to days. As clients learn to accept their disease, they also discover that they are not alone, and become functioning members of a supportive, nurturing environment. Additional modalities that contribute to this process include didactic lectures, movement classes, art therapy, meditation groups, step work, nutrition and addiction education. The primary care programme runs for six weeks to three months, depending on the clients needs.
The Harmony Eating Disorder programme is conducted in a loving and nurturing environment with firm boundaries and limitations, so that the clients is held and contained.
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