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Dave Waller

This page was medically reviewed by David Waller, (BACP, FDAP), Eating Disorder Programme Lead at Life Works, in October 2021.

Life Works is an industry-leading provider of treatment for eating disorders. With a world class team of therapists, psychiatrists and other expert practitioners, our Surrey-based rehab centre is the perfect place to make a full recovery from your struggles with eating disorders. 

Learn more about how we treat eating disorders at Life Works, and how you can get started on your path to recovery with us.

What are eating disorders?

Eating disorders are complex mental health conditions that are characterised by severely disrupted eating behaviours and a preoccupation with weight, appearance and body shape. An individual with an eating disorder may become obsessed with controlling their weight and food intake, causing them to interact with food in harmful ways.

Untreated, eating habits like these could lead to long-term problems with your physical and mental health:

  • Limiting the amount of food that they consume

  • Eating large quantities of food in one sitting

  • Developing unhealthy behaviours to influence food and weight e.g. induced vomiting, laxative abuse, excessive/compulsive exercise

How are eating disorders treated?

With timely treatment, those struggling with an eating disorder can make a full, lasting recovery. Here are some of the most effective treatments you can benefit from at Life Works.

Inpatient eating disorder treatment

Typically lasting for between 28 and 42 days, inpatient eating disorder treatment sees you given specialist, round the clock care and support on a residential basis.

Inpatient treatment allows you to focus fully on your recovery, away from the distractions and potential triggers of normal life. You’ll be treated in a clinically-informed environment that’s dedicated to helping your recovery, and puts you in the best place to make a full recovery.

During inpatient treatment, you’ll take part in a treatment plan that meets the needs of your condition. Treatments include:

  • 1:1, group and family therapy
  • Practical dietetic techniques
  • Personalised meal plans and meal and post-meal support
  • Psycho-educational groups related to your type of eating disorder
  • Relapse prevention sessions
  • Body image/acceptance groups
  • Wellbeing activities like mindfulness, somatic movement and shiatsu

Throughout your inpatient stay, you’ll also have the chance to attend Anorexics and Bulimics Anonymous (ABA) meetings. These sessions are a great way to share in your recovery journey with other people struggling with an eating disorder both during and after inpatient treatment.

FREE Eating Disorder Assessment

We offer a free eating disorder assessment, which includes reviewing dietetic and therapeutic needs, to better understand each individual’s specific requirements and suitability for the programme. 


Outpatient and day care eating disorder treatment

Eating disorders can also be treated on a day care or outpatient basis. These options can be used as either a step-down once you have completed a more comprehensive residential treatment, or as an entry-point to treatment, depending on your unique condition, needs and requirements.

Outpatient care is perfect for someone who is struggling with an eating disorder, but doesn’t need to be monitored on a daily basis and can function in daily life. Depending on your needs, you’ll attend a number of agreed sessions a week where you can benefit from expert treatment that contributes to your recovery.

Therapy for eating disorders

Therapy will likely make up a significant part of your eating disorder treatment plan. Different types of therapy will work for different people, depending on them as a person and the type of eating disorder they have. Here are some examples of the most effective therapies at Life Works.

  • Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT): identify, change and manage the thoughts and beliefs that underpin your eating disorder
  • Cognitive remediation therapy (CRT): attempts to shift away from a rigid mindset, refocusing your thoughts to be more flexible and think bigger
  • The Maudsley Model of Anorexia Nervosa Treatment for Adults (MANTRA): specifically for the treatment of anorexia, MANTRA tackles the underlying causes of the eating disorder while developing healthy coping mechanisms for overcoming them

Fundamentally, therapy aims to tackle any underlying causes of the eating disorder while developing sustainable coping strategies that guard against potential triggers and relapses. Therapy is delivered on a one-to-one, group and family basis.  

Eating disorder treatment

Life Works’ specialist eating disorder programme is suitable for adults (both male and female) with a body mass index (BMI) of 14 and over. Our approach to eating disorder treatment uses a range of tried and tested, evidence-based therapeutic interventions at our specialist eating disorder clinic in Surrey, helping people make a sustainable recovery and regain control of their life.

Set within a beautiful Georgian manor house in Woking, at Life Works you experience one of the UK’s most renowned rehab centres. Our expert multidisciplinary team have a wealth of experience in delivering specialist treatment for these complex conditions, helping you to overcome destructive behaviours and resume the healthy and fulfilling life that you deserve. All treatment is individually tailored according to your unique condition, symptoms and requirements. We ensure that you are placed at the heart of your treatment journey in order to produce sustainable, positive outcomes.

We understand that eating disorders are unique to each and every one of our clients. As such, we ensure that you are placed at the centre of your treatment journey and receive excellent one-to-one support as well as group-based interventions, in order to meet all of your personal needs and produce the best possible outcomes for you as an individual.

How to get eating disorder help

If you think that you or someone that you know may be struggling with an eating disorder, it’s important to understand that you’re not alone. The most crucial first step is to seek specialist eating disorder help.

You can get a free eating disorder assessment with Life Works that can put you on a pathway to recovery. During the assessment, we can talk over the difficulties you’ve been experiencing and outline the services we provide that can help you to overcome them. Use the information below to book your assessment today.

Contact Life Works Today

To discuss how the Life Works team can help to support individuals and families dealing with an eating disorder, and for further information on treatment and rehabilitation programmes, please call: 01483 745 066 or click here to make an enquiry.

Free Eating Disorder Assessment

Book a Free Eating Disorder Assessment at Life Works in Surrey.   

01483 745 066
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For more information about the eating disorder services that Life Works offer, download our brochure.

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