Licensed Clinical Social Worker Mel Strunk has opened a Rehoboth practice specializing in the treatment of eating disorders, which include anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorder. She has worked in Pennsylvania for over 10 years at a treatment facility that specializes in eating disorders.
"There are very few resources here in the area for individuals with eating disorders. It's important to get the proper support to help maintain recovery. Without a treatment team, it can be very easy to resort back to unhealthy eating behaviors," says Strunk.
Eating disorders affect 30 million Americans, according to the National Eating Disorder Assocation, and they are people of every age, race, gender, and socioeconomic status. Once the disorder has taken hold, it can become a self-sustaining process that usually requires professional help and support to recover, according to the association.
"An eating disorder is often a very secretive disease. Some warning signs that someone may be struggling include no longer eating around others, a preoccupation with food and weight, exercising in unhealthy amounts, going to the bathroom after a meal and cutting food into small pieces," says Strunk.
She currently offers individual therapy to treat eating disorders, as well as other mental health issues such as depression, anxiety and low self-esteem. She works primarily with adolescents ages 14 and above, as well as adults of all ages.
In addition to seeing clients in the office, Strunk also offers meal support therapy in which she has lunch or dinner in the client’s home or a local restaurant. Goals of this support include becoming more comfortable around food and meals, processing feelings that may come up around eating, and trying to decrease fear about food. "For someone with an eating disorder, eating alone can be very challenging. Having the supportive structure and not isolating during meal time can help with accountability and make eating more enjoyable," says Strunk.
She currently practices at 19606 Coastal Highway, Suite 202, Rehoboth Beach. For more information, call 610-772-0365 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.