There are a number of stages you go through if you come to Riverdale.

Our approach provides individualized treatment. We understand that the route to recovery is personal and unique and so does not promote one mode of therapy over another but looks at your circumstances in depth before agreeing the best course of action with you.

Our therapy team is highly skilled and experienced in working with eating disorders.

After admission you will see a member of the team for a therapy assessment. This allows us to agree with you which therapy will be most helpful. This decision is based on the problems you are experiencing, the latest research shown to be helping people and recommendations made by NICE on the treatment of eating disorders.

The therapies we provide include:

Weekly individual psychotherapy sessions

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

CBT can help change how people think ('Cognitive') and what they do ('Behaviour'). Unlike some of the other talking therapies, it focuses on the 'here and now' problems and difficulties. Instead of focusing on the causes of your distress or past symptoms, it looks for ways to improve your current situation and thinking.

Solution Focused Therapy (SFT)

This approach can be offered to individuals but also works well for families and couples. SFT focuses upon what you want to achieve through therapy rather than on the problem(s) that made you seek help. The therapy doesn’t focus heavily on the past, but instead, focuses on the present and future.

Art Therapy

Art Therapy is a form of psychotherapy that uses art media as its primary mode of communication.

Patients at Riverdale who are referred for Art Therapy do not need to have any previous experience or skill in art. The overall aim is to help you to make changes and grow on a personal level through the use of art materials in a supportive environment. Art Therapy is best used with patients who find it difficult to express their thoughts and feelings with just words.

Body Image Therapy

People experiencing eating disorders usually have a negative view of their bodies. This therapy invites you to challenge the way you see your body and helps to explore issues that might be causing this poor view. Patients are encouraged to develop a positive self-awareness by exploring emotional issues, life events and relationships that are related to existing skewed perceptions of the body.

Complementary Therapy

These are used as part of our weekly treatment programme and support regular treatments such as medication. The sessions help to reduce anxiety and can be used to help with physical pain and sleeplessness.

Weekly Group workshops

Groups cover a range of topics to help patients understand the physiological, emotional and relational aspects of an eating disorder.

  • Self Esteem
  • Assertiveness
  • Relapse Prevention
  • Mindfulness
  • Drama Therapy
  • Exercise Management

Family/carer based interventions

Families of adult patients may be involved in treatment where the patient permits them. This may include information sessions for families and carers on eating disorders or more structured family therapy where relationships can be explored.

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