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What is the treatment for anorexia?

Written by : DoctorNDTV Team

Treatment of anorexia is difficult, because people with anorexia believe there is nothing wrong with them. Patients in the early stages of anorexia (less than 6 months or with just a small amount of weight loss) may be successfully treated without having to be admitted to the hospital. But for successful treatment, patients must want to change and must have family and friends to help them. People with more serious anorexia need care in the hospital, usually in a special unit for people with anorexia and bulimia. Treatment involves more than changing the person's eating habits. Anorexic patients often need counseling for a year or more so they can work on changing the feelings that are causing their eating problems. These feelings may be about their weight, their family problems or their problems with self-esteem. Some anorexic patients are helped by giving drugs like antidepressants, anti-anxiety agents and appetite stimulants. These medicines are prescribed by a doctor and are used along with counseling. For adolescents with anorexia, family therapy that employs cognitive-behavioural techniques works best.

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