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Group Therapy with Children and Adolescents
An adolescent group that shall form the focus of this paper is one that is currently in a program for adolescents living with eating disorders. This is a program that uses group therapy to help adolescents that are dealing with eating disorders and the negative effects associated with eating disorders. Eating disorders in adolescents are common and they normally present or cooccur with other psychiatric disorders and complications. For instance, anorexia is known to be associated with depression as well as suicidal ideation (Lian et al., 2017). It is also associated with organ compromise (Moore & Bokor, 2020). The risk of mortality cannot be ignored. In fact, scholars suggest that increasing in treatment coverage when it comes to eating disorders significantly reduces the mortality that is associated with such disorders (Ward et al., 2019). This is why programs like the current one is very important to adolescents.
In the program, cognitive behavioral group therapy is used with a view of addressing the maladaptive thoughts that the teenagers have about themselves and even about their eating habits. They are encouraged to see the connection between their poor health and their behaviors. They are also encouraged and empowered to overcome the urge to participate in their behaviors because of their negative beliefs. For instance, in those that are diagnosed with anorexia nervosa, the therapy is structured in a way that makes them have a different attituded and perception about their body size and shape. The expected outcomes of the program and after implementing the said approach is that the adolescents will have the ability to overcome their desire to take part in the disruptive eating behavior and they will start to have a positive attitude towards eating healthy and exercising to maintain a healthy body weight.
One of the participants in the group is a girl that was diagnosed with anorexia and she has been having this disorder for about 3 years. The parents did not consider taking her to a psychiatric and mental health practitioner until she was hospitalized because of the complications associated with the disorder. Using the said approach, the adolescent reported that she has not been avoiding the intake of energy as much as before and she reported that she was willing to develop and completely healthy habit. However, the parents reported that she starte
d binge-eating and forcing herself to vomit. Research shows that relapse is always common in those persons that had the disorder for a long time and partial remission normally results to the development of a different eating disorder (Moore & Bokor, 2020). In tis case, it is clear that this particular adolescent was experiencing a partial remission and she was starting to develop bulimia. That explains why she was eating a lot of food and forcing herself to vomit.
This adolescent was also diagnosed with depression and she is also receiving individual therapy using psychotherapeutic interventions. She also attempted to commit suicide once but she has recently denied any suicidal ideation. The group has adolescents that suffer from the same condition, but she is the one who has bee having this condition for the longest time. There are others in the group who have also tried to commit suicide but they have been responding properly to the group therapy. There is need to consider separating those that had suicidal ideation and attempts from those who did not as this may help this patient and a few others in her category to benefit further from the curative factors of group therapy. This is because those with particularly similar characters/behaviors and presentations shall be grouped together as opposed to everyone in one group. Members with similar characters optimize on curative factors (Malhotra & Baker, 2019).
Malhotra, A., & Baker, J. (2019). Group Therapy. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK549812/
Moore, C. A., & Bokor, B. R. (2020). Anorexia Nervosa. Retrieved fromhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK459148/#article-17626.s7
Lian, Q., Zuo, X., Mao, Y., Luo, S., Zhang, S., Tu, X., … & Zhou, W. (2017). Anorexia nervosa, depression and suicidal thoughts among Chinese adolescents: a national school-based cross-sectional study. Environmental health and preventive medicine, 22(1), 30
Ward, Z. J., Rodriguez, P., Wright, D. R., Austin, S. B., & Long, M. W. (2019). Estimation of Eating Disorders Prevalence by Age and Associations with Mortality in a Simulated Nationally Representative US Cohort. JAMA networ