OUR SPECIALTIES

Our experts are highly specialized and passionate about the evidence-based treatments we provide.

Our experts are highly specialized and passionate about the evidence-based treatments we provide.

Our clinicians are trained and experienced in treating all eating disorder and body image concerns, as well as general mental health concerns such as depression, anxiety disorders, chronic health concerns and coping with life stressors. In addition, we specialize in all 3 evidence-based treatments for PTSD, including Cognitive Processing Therapy, Prolonged Exposure Therapy, and EMDR. It is very important to us that we use treatments backed by science, while understanding the unique needs of the individuals with whom we work.  We regularly engage in continuing education and training to ensure we are providing the highest quality, effective treatments available.

Eating Disorders
PTSD & Trauma
Chronic Health Conditions
Mood & Anxiety Disorders

Eating Disorders

At Eating & Behavioral Health Associates, all of our experts have undergone intensive training in the treatment of all eating disorders, which sets us apart from other private practices and therapists. Some of us have a special interest in specific types of eating disorder concerns, and we do our best to match our patients with the clinician who can best serve their needs. We have expertise in treating the following eating concerns:

“Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder characterized by weight loss (or lack of appropriate weight gain in growing children); difficulties maintaining an appropriate body weight for height, age, and stature; and, in many individuals, distorted body image.” (NEDA)

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“Bulimia nervosa is a serious, potentially life-threatening eating disorder characterized by a cycle of bingeing and compensatory behaviors such as self-induced vomiting designed to undo or compensate for the effects of binge eating.” (NEDA)

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“Binge eating disorder (BED) is a severe, life-threatening, and treatable eating disorder characterized by recurrent episodes of eating large quantities of food (often very quickly and to the point of discomfort); a feeling of a loss of control during the binge; experiencing shame, distress or guilt afterwards; and not regularly using unhealthy compensatory measures (e.g., purging) to counter the binge eating. It is the most common eating disorder in the United States.” (NEDA)

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These are the most commonly diagnosed eating disorders, just as severe as other eating disorders, and include:

  • Atypical Anorexia (meeting all symptoms of Anorexia but > BMI of 18.5)
  • Bulimia Nervosa (of low frequency/or limited duration)
  • Binge Eating Disorder (of low frequency/or limited duration)
  • Purging Disorder (recurrent purging without binge eating)
  • Night Eating Syndrome (eating > 25% of your intake at night, often with insomnia)
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“Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID) is a new diagnosis in the DSM-5, and was previously referred to as ‘Selective Eating Disorder.’ ARFID is similar to anorexia in that both disorders involve limitations in the amount and/or types of food consumed, but unlike anorexia, ARFID does not involve any distress about body shape or size, or fears of fatness.” (NEDA)

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“BDD is a body-image disorder characterized by persistent and intrusive preoccupations with an imagined or slight defect in one’s appearance.” (ADAA)

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“Although not formally recognized in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, awareness about orthorexia is on the rise. The term ‘orthorexia’ was coined in 1998 and means an obsession with proper or ‘healthful’ eating.” (NEDA)

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“Laxative abuse occurs when a person attempts to eliminate unwanted calories, lose weight, ‘feel thin,’ or ‘feel empty’ through the repeated, frequent use of laxatives.” (NEDA)

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“Diabulimia is a media-coined term that refers to an eating disorder in a person with diabetes, typically type I diabetes, wherein the person purposefully restricts insulin in order to lose weight.” (NEDA)

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“Compulsive exercise is not a recognized clinical diagnosis in the DSM-5, but many people struggle with symptoms associated with this term.” (NEDA)

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The National Eating Disorders Association has a screening tool that you can use to determine if it would be helpful for you or a loved one to seek help.

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Our experts at Eating & Behavioral Health Associates utilize evidence-based treatments supported by research for eating disorders and include:

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Trauma

It is normal for someone to experience upsetting memories, difficulty sleeping and being on edge after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event such as natural disaster, a serious accident, a terrorist act, war/combat, rape or other violent personal assault. First responders often experience distressing situations on the job. You may find it difficult to go to work or school or be fully present in your relationships and life. Most people start to feel better after a few weeks or months, but some people find that they continue to experience distress and difficulties. If this is the case, you may have developed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Signs and symptoms of PTSD include:

Repeated memories, distressing dreams or flashbacks of the traumatic event. Sometimes you can feel as though you are re-living or seeing it right in front of you.

Avoiding people, places, activities, or objects that remind you of the traumatic event. Some people try very hard not to think of the traumatic event or refuse to talk about it or how they feel about it.

You may find yourself having beliefs about yourself, others or the world that have developed as a result of the traumatic event (such as “It was my fault”, “The world is dangerous”, “No one can be trusted). You may also find yourself experiencing heightened fear, guilt, shame and anger, feeling less pleasure and enjoyment, and feeling disconnected from others.

You may find yourself being irritable and having outbursts, being reckless or self-destructive, being easily startled or having difficulty concentrating. Many people struggle with sleep (falling asleep or staying asleep).

Eating Disorders

Men and women with eating disorders have a higher rate than the general population.

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First Responders

About 30% of first responders are at risk for PTSD and depression.

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At Eating and Behavioral Health Associates, we offer the following Trauma-focused Psychotherapies which are the evidence-based therapies for PTSD and include:

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The National Center for PTSD has a helpful tool for determining the right treatment for you.

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Chronic Health Conditions

At Eating & Behavioral Health Associates, we understand and appreciate the importance of the mind-body connection and taking a holistic approach to health and wellness. For individuals suffering from chronic health conditions, this connection is of utmost importance. Chronic health conditions can be distressing, difficult to manage, and can come with uncertainty. Often patients with chronic health concerns can experience anxiety and depression as a result of their illness. Patients can start to worry or have negative thoughts related to their illness or how it impacts their life. They can find themselves feeling discouraged or hopeless. Often, increased stress, anxiety and depression can lead to a worsening of the chronic illness or symptoms. Coping with a chronic illness often requires support and strategies to improve the quality of your life. If you are feeling overwhelmed, we can provide the support and tools you need to feel more in control and enjoy life more.

Our own Dr. Carolyn Fisher is a health psychologist and is an expert in treating chronic health conditions including:

  • Diabetes (Type 1 or Type 2)
  • Cardiovascular Disease (Heart Attack or Stroke, Hypertension, Congestive Heart Failure)
  • Neurological Conditions (Multiple Sclerosis, POTS)

Evidence-based treatments for chronic illnesses include:

Mood and Anxiety Disorders

At Eating & Behavioral Health Associates, we understand that eating disorders often co-occur with depression and/or anxiety disorders. We can treat these co-occurring disorders, whether they are within the context of an eating disorder or not. Below is some information about depression and anxiety disorders.

Depression

Life stressors, such as losing a loved one, job loss, divorce, and other difficult situations lead to feelings of sadness or grief, and this is a normal reaction to these events. People can feel sad or blue sometimes, and this is also normal. When you are feeling depressed or down and it lasts more than a couple of days and is difficult to cheer up, it might be time to look for some help. Depression often comes with other symptoms such as difficulty finding pleasure in your activities, changes in sleep (either having trouble sleeping or sleeping too much), changes in appetite (either not finding interest in food or overeating), difficulty with concentrating, and feeling worthless or hopeless. People often find themselves struggling with negative thoughts and having difficulty seeing a different perspective. There are several types of depressive disorders including:

  • Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)
  • Persistent Depressive Disorder (Dysthymia)
  • Pre-Menstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD)
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America has more information on depressive disorders.

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Suicide

Sometimes things can feel so bad that you might think about not being here, wanting to go to sleep and never waking up or thoughts of suicide. Suicidal thoughts are the most serious signs of depression. Click here for more information about prevention and signs of suicide.

If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts, please:

  • Call 911 or go to your local emergency room
  • Call your mental health provider or other health care provider
  • Reach out to a loved one or close friend
  • Call a suicide hotline. In the United States, you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255)

Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety can be crippling and stop us from engaging in our normal activities due to fear. Worry and thinking about the worst case scenario of future events can lead to difficulty with falling asleep or staying asleep, being able to concentrate, or increasing irritability. Anxiety does not just lead to negative thoughts, but also presents as physical symptoms as well, such as headaches, nausea, muscle tension, racing heart, sweating and others. Individuals struggling with anxiety disorders often cope with their anxiety by avoiding, or using food, alcohol or other substances to reduce their anxiety. Anxiety can lead to difficulties at work, school, and with relationships. There are several major anxiety disorders, including:

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is characterized by difficulty-to-control worry about many areas of life including finances, health, relationships, work/school and every day issues.

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Panic Disorder is characterized by sudden panic attacks and a persistent worry that they will reoccur.

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Social Anxiety Disorder is characterized by intense anxiety about being judged, rejected or negatively evaluated by others.

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Phobias are characterized by intense fear and avoidance of specific situations or objects.

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Sleep is often impacted by anxiety, and sometimes individuals can develop insomnia. The Sleep Foundation has more information about insomnia.

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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is characterized by recurrent, intrusive unwanted thoughts and/or compulsions or the urge to do something over and over. Obsessive thoughts vary and can focus on things such as fear of contamination, aggressive thoughts towards others or oneself, unwanted thoughts related to sex, religion or harm, or having things in a symmetrical or specific order. Compulsions are often done in response to the obsessions, are repetitive, and often take up a lot of time. Compulsions can include handwashing, counting, ordering and arranging things in a specific, precise way or checking doors, locks, electrical items or others. Sometimes people engage in mental rituals rather than physical rituals.

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Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) is characterized by a preoccupation and anxiety about a perceived defect in one’s appearance. Often the preoccupations result in money and time invested in “fixing” the perceived flaw. Areas of perceived defects can include any body part, though often flaws are perceived near the face or with one’s shape. Body image concerns are common, but individuals with BDD will spend hours with their preoccupations, and it often interferes with relationships, work/school, and social interactions.

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Olfactory Reference Syndrome (ORS) is similar to BDD in that there is a preoccupation with a perceived body odor. ORS is not very common, but it can be very impairing. The individual perceives that they are emitting a body odor, but others around them are not aware of the odor. The concern about this body odor leads to avoidance and interferes with relationships, school/work and social interactions.

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Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder (OCPD) is a different type of disorder and is often characterized by a rigid adherence to rules, overwhelming need for order, needing things to be done “the right way” and having difficulty with giving others responsibilities. Signs can be a preoccupation and fixation on rules, details, and lists, difficulty completing tasks due to perfectionism, and others.

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