Dr Heather Westwood is a highly skilled Clinical Psychologist, Cognitive Behavioural Therapist and Research Psychologist who has worked in mental health settings in the UK for over ten years.
Heather completed her undergraduate degree in Psychology at Newcastle University before going on to study for a Post Graduate Diploma in Mental Health Studies at The University of Southampton, for which she gained a Distinction. Heather then went on to complete a research PhD at King’s College London, focusing on the relationship between autism and anorexia nervosa. Heather achieved the Elsevier Outstanding PhD Thesis Prize for exceptional doctoral work in recognition for her studies. Wanting to shift her focus more to clinical work, Heather then completed her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at Royal Holloway University of London, from which she gained HCPC registration as a Clinical Psychologist.
As a therapist, building rapport and creating a safe, judgement-free, and empathic space is at the core of what Heather does. Heather very much believes that being “in therapy” is an active, rather than a passive process and works collaboratively with her clients to ensure they are getting as much out of the therapeutic relationship and process as they can. This includes developing a shared understanding of a client’s difficulties through a comprehensive assessment process and working together to implement evidence-based interventions to address factors that may have led to and are maintaining these difficulties.
Heather specialises in the treatment of adults with eating disorders, including Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, Binge Eating Disorder and other atypical presentations. Alongside her work with The Fitzrovia Psychology Clinic, Heather works in an adult eating disorder service within the NHS. Heather is passionate about drawing on evidenced approaches within her practice, in line with current NICE guidelines. Heather is skilled and experienced in delivering Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, MANTRA and in drawing on other approaches including Compassion Focused Therapy and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy to offer a tailored, personalised intervention for the treatment of eating disorders. Heather works closely with colleagues from other professions including General Practice, Psychiatry and Dietetics to ensure that a client’s safety is prioritised, and that any psychiatric or physical risk is comprehensively managed.
Outside of eating disorders, Heather has an interest in trauma and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and is skilled at treating trauma in the context of eating disorders, as well as delivering evidence-based treatment for PTSD. Heather has extensive experience of treating a range of mental health problems including:
Heather has extensive experience of working with individuals on the autism spectrum and can tailor treatment accordingly to suit their individual needs.
Outside of her clinical work, Heather maintains her interest in academia and research and continues to conduct empirical research and to publish high-quality papers, working with some of the most prestigious researchers within the eating disorder field.