A leading provider of eating disorder treatment in Oxford
Priory Wellbeing Centre Oxford is a high quality treatment facility, offering specialist outpatient treatment for a broad range of eating disorders, right in the heart of Oxford city centre.
Our highly skilled treatment team are able to deliver flexible outpatient treatment for the following eating disorders:
- Anorexia nervosa
- Bulimia nervosa
- Binge eating disorder (BED)
- Other specified feeding or eating disorders (OSFED), which may also be known as ‘eating disorders not otherwise specified (EDNOS)’ or ‘atypical eating disorders’
We ensure that all eating disorder treatment is tailored according to your individual needs and requirements, so that you benefit from a personalised treatment package, during which you are empowered to achieve the most positive outcomes, and take steps towards recovery and wellbeing.
Eating disorders are debilitating conditions and can have a hugely detrimental effect on all areas of your life, as well as causing a whole host of devastating long-term physical and psychological problems. However, it’s important to recognise that you don’t have to suffer on your own; expert treatment, support and therapy is available, and the quicker you seek help, the more likely you are to overcome your eating disorder and return to the healthy, fulfilling, and positive life that you deserve.
What is an eating disorder?
Eating disorders are serious psychiatric conditions that cause sufferers to develop an overwhelming obsession with their weight, body shape and appearance. This results in them engaging in severely disrupted eating habits, and interacting with food in dangerous and harmful ways. The destructive behaviours that are associated with eating disorders may include:
- Drastically limiting the amount of food that you eat
- Eating excessive amounts of food in one sitting
- Engaging in unhealthy behaviours to influence food and weight e.g. induced vomiting, laxative abuse, excessive exercise
- A combination of the above
These behaviours can have an extremely negative impact on individuals’ mental and physical health, and for some people, can even result in death.
What are the most common signs and symptoms of an eating disorder?
The signs and symptoms of eating disorders depend on the type of eating disorder that you are struggling with, and can also vary from person to person. However, the following are all common signs that you, or someone that you know, may be suffering with an eating disorder:
- Abnormally low or high weight
- An obsession with your physical appearance and how other people perceive your body
- Believing that you are fat when other people say that you are thin
- A preoccupation with food and calories, and feeling as though food has taken over your life
- Feeling as though you have lost control over your eating habits
- Experiencing guilt and shame when you eat
- Experiencing intense stress during mealtimes
- Wanting to eat alone or in secret
What eating disorders are treated at Priory Wellbeing Centre Oxford?
Our eating disorder experts in Oxford are able to provide exceptional outpatient treatment for all of the most common types of eating disorder, as well as atypical eating disorders. These include:
Anorexia sufferers typically have a preoccupation with being as thin as possible, causing them to develop a drastically distorted body image and an overwhelming fear of gaining weight. People with anorexia may engage in a wide variety of dysfunctional behaviours in order to keep their weight as low as possible. These include starving themselves, exercising excessively, making themselves sick, and abusing laxatives.
Anorexia is most common in young women between the ages of 14 and 25 years old. However, it is possible for anorexia to develop in anyone, despite their gender, age or background.
Bulimia is a complex eating disorder that is characterised by sufferers regularly eating huge amounts of food (known as binge eating), followed by engaging in harmful ‘purging’ behaviours, such as making themselves vomit after eating, or abusing laxatives, in order to try and control their weight. These binge-purge cycles are often triggered by hunger, anxiety or stress and because the cycles don’t result in dramatic changes in weight, people with bulimia often appear to be a ‘normal’ size, which can make bulimia very difficult to identify.
Bulimia can affect males and females of any age, but it is more common amongst girls and women between the ages of 15 and 25 years old.
Binge eating disorder (BED)
BED causes people to regularly eat excessive amounts of food in one sitting, even when they aren’t hungry (binge eating). However, unlike bulimia, BED sufferers don’t engage in any purging behaviours after bingeing, which means that these individuals usually gain weight as a result of their constant overeating. This can lead to people struggling with BED to become obese which, in turn, can cause additional health complications.
Research indicates that BED affects both males and females equally, and has been found to be more common between the ages of 20 and 40 years old.
Other specified feeding or eating disorders (OSFED)
OSFED, also known as ‘atypical eating disorders’, are characterised by some of the features that resemble anorexia, bulimia and BED, but they do not meet the exact requirements needed in order to receive a formal diagnosis of one of these conditions. An individual may have OSFED if they display the following:
- Having a low body weight, but one that isn’t low enough to be diagnosed with anorexia
- Engaging in binge eating and/or purging behaviours, but on an infrequent basis
- Having an obsession with weight, appearance and body shape, but no other symptoms
- Being extremely underweight as a woman, but menstruation (periods) still takes place
Many people who have OSFED have struggled with anorexia, bulimia or BED in the past, or may go on to be diagnosed with one of these eating disorders in the future.
We are able to offer tailored outpatient therapy at Priory Wellbeing Centre Oxford for anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa in particular, which provide a set amount of one-to-one therapy sessions, based on national guidelines. .