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Navigating common eating disorder recovery challenges (Examiner.com)

Chief Marketing Officer Julie Holland Faylor, MHS, CEDS is the National Eating Disorders Examiner. Read an excerpt below from her blog post "Navigating common eating disorder recovery challenges": Every eating disorder is different. Some individuals suffer mild symptoms for a short period of time before finding a life of recovery. Others struggle with intense, life-disrupting thoughts and behaviors for years, even decades, before getting the help that they need through hospitalization, intensive treatment and ongoing outpatient support with a clinician and/or dietitian. Because every eating disorder is different, every recovery journey is different as well. While each recovery journey is unique, they all have one thing in common: challenges. Eating disorders are complex illnesses that impact so many parts of life—they can cause chronic and severe medical consequences for the human body, they can impact the brain’s ability to function and process information, they can impact relationships with loved ones, friends and colleagues, and they can adversely impact performance at work, in school and in other life roles. Healing in all of these areas takes time and effort, not to mention perhaps the most challenging aspect of eating disorder recovery—daily exposure to food and eating. We need food to live, and we have to live in our bodies no matter how dissatisfied we are with its size or shape. People with eating disorders use their behaviors in an effort to manage anxiety or suppress painful emotions, similar to how a substance abuser uses their drug of choice. Unlike drugs, eating disorder survivors cannot abstain from food and eating following intervention and treatment. Rather, they are exposed daily to the very behavior at the core of their life threatening mental illness. Making peace with this exposure, in addition to addressing the other complex aspects of recovery, inevitably leads to challenges from time to time... Visit her blog to read the article in its entirety.

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