What is Rumination Disorder?
Rumination Disorder is characterized as:
- Repeated regurgitation of food over a period of at least 1 month. Regurgitated food may be re- chewed, re-swallowed, or spit out. The repeated regurgitation is not attributable to an associated gastrointestinal or other medical condition (e.g., gastroesophageal reflux, pyloric stenosis).
- The eating disturbance does not occur exclusively during the course of anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge-eating disorder, or avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder.
- If the symptoms occur in the context of another mental disorder (e.g., intellectual disability [intellectual developmental disorder] or another neurodevelopmental disorder), they are sufficiently severe to warrant additional clinical attention.
How is Rumination Disorder Treated?
Rumination disorder has very specific treatment protocols that include stimulus control, breathing retraining, cognitive therapy, and exposure-based techniques. Coordination with a dietitian and medical doctor is also essential to ensure nutritional stabilization and to attend to any damage to the esophagus and/or GI tract.