“Social media can help develop and sustain an eating disorder, but it can also be a powerful tool in helping and sustaining recovery.” – Dr. Ashley Solomon
Cincinnati, Ohio (PRWEB)
February 24, 2015
“As our understanding of those affected by eating disorders evolves, so too does our understanding of how to treat these diverse diseases,” said Program Director Dr. Ashley Solomon, PsyD, http://www.erc-ohio.com, an eating disorder treatment center in Cincinnati serving adults, adolescents, and families.
Solomon, a nationally recognized expert in the treatment of eating disorders and a thought leader on the relationship between eating disorders and technology, is also co-chair of the Academy for Eating Disorders Social Media Committee. “In the past few years, technologies have emerged quickly in everyday life, especially social media and mobile apps. In some cases, these and other emerging technologies can contribute to the development and maintenance of an eating disorder. “
New technologies offer dangerous, unfiltered exposure to eating disorder-inducing content, including:
- Increasing amount of content advocating eating disorders on the Internet, also known as “Thinspiration”, “Thinspo”, “Pro-Ana” and “Pro-Mia”. Images and texts encourage eating disorder behavior to achieve an extremely thin body ideal. This content leads to feelings of inferiority, inadequacy and body dissatisfaction in otherwise normal women and can compel the urgent need to take measures through restriction, purification or overexertion in order to achieve more slimness in those struggling with a negative body image or eating habits Disorder.
- As the use of social media increases, so does body dissatisfaction, and the more time we spend in social comparison, the more deficits in our self-esteem have an impact. Many people use social media to share information and pictures about their diet and body ideals, while some people who are already struggling with interpersonal difficulties and issues related to self-esteem and confidence spend too much time on social media for avoidance and confidence Avoid passivity and restrict direct communication with friends and family. Eating disorders are lonely and isolating diseases, and social media offers a sense of belonging and connectedness to a topic that feels safe and comfortable, even if it’s unhealthy.
- Many tablet and cell phone apps are designed to aid dieting, fitness, and track everything from calorie intake to weight loss and daily steps. While these tools are benign and helpful for many people in their pursuit of healthy lifestyles, individuals prone to eating disorders may have difficulty using this technology responsibly and moving away from it as another avenue to self-destruction .
“While certain aspects of social media can help develop and sustain an eating disorder, if used responsibly, they can also be an effective tool to support and sustain recovery,” continues Dr. Solomon gone. “Social media enables peer support and connection with others, and for those struggling with interpersonal skills it can be a great place to build relationships and connections. While content promoting eating disorders is becoming increasingly common online, it is also meaningful content that is focused on recovery, including communities, groups, and blogs. “
As part of the Eating Recovery Center family of programs, the Eating Recovery Center of Ohio leverages multiple technologies in the treatment environment to support and engage our increasingly tech-savvy patients.
- Initial assessment of patient technology use and how it supports potentially mismatched thoughts and behaviors regarding body image, food and eating, self-esteem, confidence, and interpersonal relationships.
- Body movement sensors, also known as body bugs, are used to assess sleep and exercise patterns, including the frequency, volume, or intensity of movement. Body motion sensors are particularly helpful for patients who tend to exercise excessively, as well as a tool when people struggling with exercise and physical problems are faced with the challenge of reliably reporting movements to their treatment team themselves.
- MP3s preloaded with material to aid in relaxation and anxiety management are given to patients upon admission.
- Various art therapy projects use multimedia to promote healing through creativity and artistic expression.
The Eating Recovery Center of Ohio’s multidisciplinary care team provides comprehensive outpatient care, including medical, psychiatric, therapeutic, and nutritional support. For more information or to speak to a master’s level eating disorder therapist call 513-273-1706 or email info (at) erc-ohio (dot) com or visit (http: // www.erc-ohio.com) take part in a confidential live chat.
About the Eating Recovery Center of Ohio (http://www.erc-ohio.com): Located in Cincinnati, the Eating Recovery Center of Ohio offers comprehensive outpatient treatment programs for eating disorders for adults, adolescents and families in the area. Customized treatment plans provide evidence-based medical, psychiatric, psychological, and dietary interventions to meet each patient’s individual recovery needs. The Eating Recovery Center of Ohio works directly with the Eating Recovery Center, a center of excellence for the treatment of eating disorders based in Denver, Colorado. The Eating Recovery Center offers the full continuum of eating disorders treatment under the guidance of five internationally recognized treatment professionals with 160 years of combined treatment for eating disorders. As a member of the Eating Recovery Center family of programs, patients and families at the Eating Recovery Center of Ohio benefit from the most comprehensive and effective treatment for eating disorders available. Call 513-273-1706 or send an email to info (at) erc-ohio (dot) com
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