Although many people recover quite quickly from an eating disorder, some suffer for years. If a patient has an eating disorder for more than five years, it's classified as severe and enduring. While early detection and assertive intervention is recommended for the best outcome for patients, treatment is recommended and recovery is possible at any stage.
For sufferers and their families, ongoing eating disorders can be incredibly challenging. Families can feel frustrated, sad and angry, and often become isolated from the wider community. Because eating disorders have some of the highest mortality rates for mental illness, families can also feel frightened and hopeless the longer the disorder goes on.
If you're caring for someone with a chronic eating disorder, it's important to make sure you have appropriate medical support. Many families negotiate regular appointments with a GP to check on health issues.
EDANZ offers help and support to families, whether they're dealing with a newly diagnosed disorder or a long-term issue.