Syracuse UniversityCounseling Center

Eating Disorder Support Services

Eating disorders are a complex psychological and medical problem that can impact multiple areas of a student’s life.  The most effective strategy for providing eating disorder treatment is through a treatment team approach that incorporates a range of services that address the complex factors contributing to the eating disorder.

WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I THINK I MIGHT HAVE AN EATING DISORDER?

If you believe that you or someone you know has an eating disorder it is important to seek professional assessment and support.  The Syracuse University Eating Disorder Treatment Team can be accessed through the Counseling Center (315.443.4715) or Health Services (315.443.9005).  CLICK HERE to make an appointment at the Counseling Center.   

WHO ARE THE MEMBERS OF THE EATING DISORDER TREATMENT TEAM?

The Eating Disorder Treatment Team consists of a multidisciplinary staff including the following:

    • Health Services medical providers

    • Health Services psychiatric nurse practitioner

    • Health Services dietitian

    • Counseling Center therapists

    • Case managers from the Office of Student Assistance

WHAT DOES AN ASSESSMENT WITH THE EATING DISORDER TEAM INVOLVE?

In order to determine appropriate treatment needs, a comprehensive assessment needs to be conducted.  This assessment will include:

    • A medical evaluation with Health Services

    • A mental health assessment with the Counseling Center

    • A dietary assessment with Health Service's dietician.   

Since we utilize a treatment team approach, it will be necessary for the student to sign a release of information to allow the various members of the team to communicate with each other.  Students have the right to not sign this release of information, but they will not be offered services of the eating disorder team.

After the student has completed the above assessments, the eating disorder treatment team will meet to discuss their overall assessment of the student and to develop treatment recommendations.  Depending on the student’s level of need, services may be provided by the team, the student may be referred to community based treatment resources, or in some instances, the student may be encouraged to take a medical leave of absence from the university to seek more intensive treatment.

WHAT CAN I EXPECT IF THE EATING DISORDER TEAM PROIVDES SERVICES TO ME?

If services are provided via the treatment team, you can expect regular appointments with a therapist, dietitian, and medical provider.  The Eating Disorder Treatment Team collaborates to provide the following support services:

    • Medical: management of any medical consequences of disordered eating, prescribing medication if necessary, regular weight checks if appropriate

    • Nutritional: education about healthy eating and the impact of certain behaviors upon health and wellness. In many circumstances, weekly meal plans will be developed to assist the student in developing healthy eating habits 

    • Mental Health: develop strategies for changing the behavior patterns that contribute to disordered eating. Additionally, co-occurring problems (e.g., anxiety, depression, etc.) that contribute to disordered eating may be addressed

WHAT IF I NEED MORE INTENSIVE OR ONGOING TREATMENT?

There may be times when recommendations will be made for the student to pursue intensive outpatient treatment, residential based treatment, or hospitalization. These recommendations will be determined by the treatment team at the time of assessment, as well as reviewed on an ongoing basis.

DO MY PARENTS/FAMILY HAVE TO KNOW THAT I AM RECEIVING SERVICES?

If you are 18 or over, all services are confidential. However, we invite and encourage students to maintain open dialogue with parents/family members due to the potential serious nature of eating disorders.

If you have additional questions, please contact the Counseling Center at 315.443.4715.