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Can I get better if I have anorexia?

Yes, you can defintely get better if you suffer from anorexia nervosa. Therapists, doctors, and nutritionists can help. A variety of treatments are available, including:
  • Medical care: Someone who has been suffering physical effects of anorexia nervosa may require hospitalization for recovery. It may take a few days to stabilize body weight and make sure the person is out of danger. 
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT): CBT is used to help the patient restructure thoughts, behaviors, and emotions to acquire healthy ways of living and dealing with problems. It deals with body-image issues, self-worth problems, and behavioral issues (such as body checking, purging, self-harm, and food avoidance). It is considered the first line of treatment in recovery. 
  • Medications: Antidepressants have shown mixed results for anorexia nervosa treatment, but are excellent at helping with depressive issues that are often part of the problem. Care must be taken with young patients treated with SSRI antidepressants like fluoxetine, as the FDA warns that these drugs can cause an increase in self-destructive thoughts for this age group. Mood stabilizers and antipsychotic drugs may also be appropriate as part of care. Note that it may not be necessary for you to stay on any of these drugs for life; some are just used to help in the initial phases of recovery.
  • Dietary guidance: Anyone with an eating disorder may benefit from nutritional help to develop healthy eating habits. 
  • Other forms of help include psychotherapy, support groups, and family-based therapy.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.