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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    How do I stop binge eating?

    I binge eat and have most of the sypmtoms of binge eating disorder but have never been properly diagnosed. Is there anyone who can give me a diagnosis of BED or EDNOS?
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    Dr Helena Schutz

    Clinical Psychologist, Psychologist

    I am a registered Clinical Psychology Medicare Provider with specialised training in the treatment of eating disorders and disordered eating in women and men aged … View Profile

    Hi there, and well done for taking the brave step of reaching out for some support with your binge eating!  It isn't possible to give a diagnosis based on the information that you have provided, however if your binge eating is distressing you it is important that you seek some kind of professional assistance.  Diagnostic classifications are simply broad descriptors of presenting difficulties.  The treatment approach taken would most likely be quite similar for EDNOS and BED, unless you are significantly underweight, or have recently lost a significant amount of weight.  Broadly speaking, treatment would generally involve working to normalize your eating patterns, addressing unhelpful beliefs that are fueling your binge eating, and finding ways to address underlying emotional distress.  In case you are unaware, under the Better Access to Mental Health scheme you can get a GP Mental Health Care Plan which will enable you to access up to ten Medicare-subsidised sessions per calendar year with a psychologist/clinical psychologist or other eligible allied health professional.  A similar plan is available to access subsidised sessions with a dietitian.  I would recommend seeking assistance from professionals experienced in working with individuals with eating disorders, as it is a highly specialized field.  A combination of a GP, psychologist/clinical psychologist and dietitian would be a great place to start.  Other professionals who you can access under the Better Access Scheme are psychiatrists, eligible social workers, and occupational therapists if you feel more comfortable with professionals from these disciplines.  Your individual needs and preferences are important to consider.  Finally, it is crucial that you feel comfortable with whoever you work with, so if the “fit” doesn't feel right don't hesitate to keep looking around until you find the right professional(s) for your needs.   I hope this helps, and best wishes!   Helena.

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