Spotlight on Eating Disorder Center of Montana
Finding optimum health and well-being can be like trying to balance on a teeter-totter: We strive for the sweet spot but often lean too far back or forward and get thrown off-kilter.
A holistic-based health program recognizes the humanity of striving for balance in health and well-being. It doesn’t just look at a symptom or an issue but rather looks at the whole individual and their current and previous mental, physical, and emotional state of being.
Bozeman’s Eating Disorder Center of Montana (EDCMT) takes such a holistic approach to disordered eating. Their focus is a strong, compassionate, integrated program with medical oversight. Clinical Director Jeni Gochin, one of EDCMT’s cofounders, believes that at their core eating disorders are somatic problems that stem from “internalizing on a physical level something very psychological,” possibly a conflict or deprivation of some kind that gets played out with food. Our patients “don’t hate food,” Gochin says, but “they may be at war with it.”
Patients may be challenged by anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge-eating disorder, or avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID). When a patient walks into EDCMT, holistic healing begins. Their in-house registered dietitians and psychotherapists work together to craft an individualized treatment program. Through deep listening and focused attention to the patient, a personalized plan following Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy guidelines is developed. Provider-to-patient ratio is a low 1:4. Patients learn to shift from not wanting to be in their bodies to reclaiming them with love and self-compassion. A registered dietician oversees daily meals prepared by their in-house chef, while a full-time nurse, an art therapist, a yoga practitioner, and a psychiatrist all complement the program.
Patients are nurtured along their healing paths. They will join either the outpatient, intensive outpatient, or day-treatment program, depending on their needs. The day-treatment program includes two shared meals and snacks, a check of vital signs by the nurse, and a dietitian- or therapist-led group session that teaches patients how to have a healthy relationship with food. Patients’ day-to-day challenges with anxiety, trauma, depression, or other stressors are addressed.
The onset of COVID-19 has led EDCMT to connect virtually with patients via telehealth sessions for their outpatient programs. These online sessions maintain vital connections while providing protection for patients’ and providers’ health and security. Virtual sessions also enable Montanans living in rural areas to get the help they need. A slow return to seeing patients in person will take place at the downtown Bozeman location per state guidelines.
EDCMT provides an important, necessary service to the community and Montana that has helped many to regain their sense of self, and a sense of self-appreciation that “leads the way out of the darkness of eating disorders, freeing our patients to live wholeheartedly.”
Contact edcmt.com for further information or call (406) 451-7370 for a free consultation.