Involvement of parents in bulimia treatment more helpful for teens

Involvement of parents in bulimia treatment more helpful for teens

According to researchers, family based therapy assists teen bulimia patients in recovering more quickly than those taking part in cognitive behavioral therapy. Their research suggests that it could be beneficial, if parents get more involved in bulimia treatment of a teen.

The University of California, San Francisco reported that the new study was a large randomized clinical trial for teenagers suffering from bulimia nervosa. The findings challenge the way young people suffering from bulimia are treated as parents are not included in the counseling.

According to Daniel Le Grange, Benioff UCSF Professor in children's health in the departments of psychiatry and pediatrics at UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital San Francisco, parents should be actively involved in the treatment of children and teens suffering from eating disorders.

Le Grange added, "This study shows definitively that parental engagement is imperative for a successful outcome of adolescents with bulimia nervosa. It goes counter to the training that physicians receive in psychiatry, which teaches that parents are to blame for bulimia, and therefore should be omitted from treatment".

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and family based therapy (FBT) were compared in the study to find out which route was more helpful. CBT concentrates on the individual patient, and assists the individual in understanding and confronting the illogical thoughts that lead them to binge and purge, whereas FBT trains parents of a patient to support them in best way.

It has been found in the study that patients taking part in family based therapy reached higher abstinence rates from binging and purging than those who underwent CBT only.

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