Is your child a picky eater? Are you a picky eater? If so, you/they might not be picky at all. In fact, you or your child could have Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID), also known as a selective eating disorder (SED). When a person has this disorder, they restrict certain foods from their diet due to its appearance, smell, taste, texture, brand, presentation, or a past negative experience/memory with the food. A person with this disorder may also forget to eat and most likely only eat when they are starving. ARFID is regularly seen in children, where doctors and parents often mistaken this for picky eating. If left undiagnosed, this disorder could extend into adolescence and adulthood, causing the adult to suffer from social anxiety.
At the Eustache Institute, we treat children and adults to overcome ARFID with cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), which is a highly effective and non-invasive treatment, concentrating on a person’s negative patterns of thinking that distort their beliefs that cause irrational thinking. CBT will break down an overwhelming event into a minuscule, more controllable matter, providing insight and association in regards to the circumstance, belief, emotions, physical feelings, reactions, and actions. During a CBT session, together we confront the patient’s fears about the food on their “do not eat list,” and then we encourage them to take a closer look at those foods by touching, smelling and then eventually, asking the patient to taste them. It’s important to note that ARFID is a different type of eating disorder than the most common ones like bulimia, anorexia, and binge eating.
To learn more about Cognitive behavioral therapy and avoidant restrictive food intake disorder, please contact the Eustache Institute today at (424) 382-3097.
Dr. Elena Eustache has a Ph.D. in Psychology and Cognitive Behavior Therapy. Dr. Elena Eustache helps her patients reach their full potential so they can live the life they’ve always dreamed. To learn more about Elena Eustache and the Eustache Institute, please visit her website at www.EustacheInstitute.com. You can also follow her on Instagram and Facebook.