Eating disorders remain extremely difficult to treat and investigation has revealed that manual-based eating disorder treatment outcomes have failed to improve over the second half of the last century. Various studies have observed that clinicians use evidence-based treatments for eating disorders inconsistently and often exclude fundamental theoretical techniques. Some argue that this departure from evidence-based practice may in some cases be the efforts of clinicians to develop methods more sensitive to real world situations. It stands to reason that some of the techniques currently being used by clinicians are promising treatment approaches. The purpose of this study was to explore the therapeutic process of a select group of clinicians at one eating disorder treatment center. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 16 clinicians. A hermeneutic analysis of the interview transcripts revealed a common treatment approach with nine areas of focus: (a) stabilizing behaviors, (b) relationship building, (c) providing education, (d) increasing motivation, (e) challenging cognitions, (f) understanding emotions, (g) finding purpose and meaning, (h) improving body image, and (i) preventing relapse. Insights acquired from the clinicians in this study could contribute to the development of more effective treatments for clients with eating disorders.
College and Department
David O. McKay School of Education; Counseling Psychology and Special Education
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Crowton, Sabree Anne, "A Hermeneutic Exploration of the Therapeutic Process of Clinicians at an Eating Disorder Treatment Center" (2018). Theses and Dissertations. 7008.
eating disorders, psychotherapies, treatment provider's experiences, theoretical orientations, therapy process