OKCIC offers behavioral health treatment to those in need.
OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma City Indian Clinic (OKCIC), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit clinic providing health and wellness services to American Indians in central Oklahoma, aims to provide resources and hope for those struggling with eating disorders.
Eating Disorders Awareness Week will be observed February 27 – March 5, 2023 to provide education and offer hope and resources to those in need. According to the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA), 28.8 million Americans experience an eating disorder at some point in their lives.
Some common signs of eating disorders include, but are not limited to:
- a preoccupation with weight and/or food
- obsessive food and calorie counting
- extreme concern about body size and weight
- noticeable fluctuations in weight, both up and down
- frequent dieting, including fad diets and cutting out entire food groups
- making comments about feeling fat and secret recurring episodes of binge eating
These are only a few examples of behaviors that could indicate an eating disorder. If you are concerned about yourself or a loved one, call the NEDA hotline at (800) 931-2237. A screening is also available at nationaleatingdisorders.org/screening-tool.
“Although eating disorders are a response to stress and/or trauma, they can affect every organ system in the body,” said Kim Farris, OKCIC’s Director of Behavioral Health. “It’s crucial to seek help for eating disorders because they can be fatal. Remember, the chance for recovery increases the earlier an eating disorder is detected.”
An active support system can make a huge difference in maintaining recovery. Close friends and family can encourage you to eat regular meals, stay in therapy and use coping skills. It is also helpful to focus on what life will be like without your eating disorder, and to think about what your goals for recovery are. During recovery, you can set small mini-goals, such as eating a meal without anxiety or guilt.
“Many factors can contribute to developing an eating disorder,” Farris said. “Weight stigma, bullying and even family dynamics can play a role. It’s important to remember that your healthiest weight is the weight that allows you to feel strong, and live a full and normal life.”
Behavioral health treatment is available. OKCIC patients can reach Behavioral Health at (405) 948-4900 ext. 610. For free and confidential support, reach the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988.
About Oklahoma City Indian Clinic
Oklahoma City Indian Clinic was established in 1974 to provide excellent health care and wellness services to American Indians in central Oklahoma. The clinic staff cares for nearly 23,000 patients from over 200 federally recognized tribes every year. American Indians can receive a range of services, including medical, dental, pediatrics, prenatal, pharmacy, optometry, physical fitness, nutrition, family programs and behavioral health services. For more information, please call (405) 948-4900 or visit www.okcic.com.