Children’s Mental Health – Psychiatric Help for Children

While we tend to think of childhood as a carefree time of life, the fact is that many children suffer from mental conditions and disorders, just the same as adults. Among other things, children’s mental health concerns can include emotional, behavioral, and mental disorders such as eating disorders, learning and developmental disabilities, Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHA), and autism. And, similar to adults, children can be impacted by conditions like anxiety, depression, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Additionally, as children grow and mature into young adults, they can develop other problems associated with adolescence, such as underage drinking and substance abuse.

Left untreated, any of these conditions or disorders can result in difficulties with making friends, and behavior issues in school and at home. What is most troubling, however, is that research has shown that a majority of adult mental disorders start early in life. This makes it critical that children’s mental health conditions be caught promptly and treated appropriately.

Symptoms of Child Psychological Disorders

Child psychological disorders and conditions can affect any ethnic group, and income level, and those living in any region of the country. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) cites a study from a National Research Council and Institute for Medicine report that estimates about 1 in 5 children across the United States will experience a mental disorder in any given year.

Symptoms often change as a child grows and matures, so the signs of a problem may be difficult to spot in the early stages. Often, parents are the first to recognize that there is an issue with their children’s emotions or behavior, however problems may also be brought to your attention by your child’s educators or another adult who knows your child well. Some general signs to look for include:

  • Marked decline in school performance
  • Strong worries or anxiety that causes problems at home or at school
  • Random, frequent physical aches and pains, such as headaches or an upset stomach
  • Difficulty sleeping, nightmares
  • Marked changes in eating habits
  • Feeling hopeless
  • Having low or no energy
  • Aggressive behavior, disobedience, and/or confrontations with or defiance of authority figures
  • Temper tantrums or outbursts of anger
  • Thoughts of suicide or thoughts of harming themselves or others

Psychiatric Help for Children

  • Please get immediate assistance if you think your child may be in danger of harming themselves or someone else.  Call a crisis line or the National Suicide Prevention Line at 1.800.273.TALK (8255).

Getting psychiatric help for children, in the form of early diagnosis and receiving the correct treatment, is essential for your child’s well being, both now and throughout their life.

If your child’s problems persist across a variety of settings (for example: home, school, and with peers), some of the steps to get help include:

  • Talk to your child about how they are feeling. Find out if they would like to discuss a problem with you or another adult. Actively listen to their responses and concerns.
  • Talk to your child’s pediatrician, school counselor or school nurse, or a mental health professional if you see behaviors or problems in your child or teen that worry you.
  • Seek evaluation from a specialist who deals with children’s mental health concerns.
  • Ask the specialist if they have experience with treating the problem or behavior you see in your child.
  • Don’t delay in seeking help – early treatment generally gives better results.

Children can be treated in a variety of settings that range from one-on-one (or with a parent) sessions with a mental health professional to a group setting with a therapist and the child’s peers. Talk therapy can help change behaviors and may be used in combination with other treatments. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) has been shown to be very effective in helping children learn coping strategies so they can change unhealthy behavior patterns and distorted thinking. Additionally, medications may be recommended for disorders such as ADHD or may be given for other types of severe or difficult cases.

Need More Information on Children’s Mental Health?

If you have questions or need more information about psychiatric help for children, we can help. The professionals at our child-focused department, The Children’s Center, specialize in child psychiatry and psychology, and other services related to children’s mental health. For more information, contact The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders in Delray Beach, Florida or call us today at 561-496-1094.

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Depression and Anxiety – Women’s Health

Today’s women face a variety of life and family stressors. These pressures can lead to mental health concerns that can range anywhere from simple “burn out” to mood disorders and beyond. In fact, it may surprise you to know that women are almost twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with depression and anxiety.

Obviously, researchers want to know the reason for this alarming statistic. Is there a biological component at play in a women’s body that isn’t as prevalent in a male? Do females learn to worry more because they pattern themselves after a mother who worries? Or, is it simply because women are more likely than men to admit they have symptoms and seek help?

The official view of the mental health profession is that the sexes are similar in the numbers of each gender who experience psychiatric disorders. However, according to the authors of The Stressed Sex, it actually turns out that “in any given year, total rates of psychological disorder are 20-40% higher in women than men.”

Indeed, studies are beginning to show that a female’s physiology can contribute to their higher rate of physiological disorders. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America notes that women’s fight-or-flight responses are more sensitive than a man’s and the response stays activated longer in a woman. Additionally, the female brain is more sensitive to stress hormones and does not process serotonin, the neurotransmitter believed to influence psychological functions, as fast as the male brain.

Women also have a variety of external stressors that can lead to higher levels of depression and anxiety:

  • If you have children, there is a lot of pressure to be a “perfect mom.” This burden often leads to overscheduling activities and taking on more tasks, which takes away from relaxation and “decompression” time.
  • Caffeine comes in many forms today – think about sodas, coffee and tea, caffeinated beverages, and water enhancers, just to name a few. Caffeine affects brain chemistry by raising dopamine levels. High dopamine levels are what make you feel jittery after drinking a caffeinated beverage – if the level is high enough, it can bring on panic attacks.
  • Food allergies and food sensitivities can set off symptoms of anxiety in some people. This is because nutrition affects serotonin levels which, in turn, affects your mood. The gastrointestional tract is a major source of serotonin production.
  • Certain medications, including anxiety medication, can worsen the symptoms of anxiety. If at all possible, they should be used on a more temporary basis.
  • Wide use of sunscreens are great, but they’ve contributed to vitamin D deficiencies. A decrease in vitamin D has be shown to be related to depression and mood disorders.

In addition to these external stressors, physical reasons for depression and anxiety in women can include:

  • Hormonal issues that can influence mood: an imbalance in your hypothalamus, in your pituitary gland, or in your adrenal glands, can cause panic attacks and chronic anxiety.
  • Perimenopause – anxiety is often the first sign of perimenopause. The fluctuation of estrogen and progesterone levels impacts both mood and energy levels.
  • Hormonal balance can be affected by a lack of physical exercise, resulting in an increase in depression and anxiety.
  • Lack of sleep – women often don’t get as much sleep as they need or don’t sleep well, but sleep is imperative for brain health.

Ways to Help Reduce Depression and Anxiety

  • Make the time to do something you enjoy. Reading even just one chapter in a book or one article in a magazine can help you decrease stress. Work in the garden or take up a craft. It can be hard to find the time, but it is essential to find balance in your life.
  • Meditation or mindfulness training can help you learn how to better cope with stress.
  • Exercise not only allows you to release, it also helps regulate hormone levels.
  • Try relaxation techniques such as yoga, tai chi, or breathing exercises.
  • Start a gratitude journal and record five things you are grateful for every day. This helps you focus on the good things that surround you, which helps you feel more positive.
  • Turn off the television so you stop focusing on the bad news of the day!
  • Seek guidance from a mental help professional if you find these techniques are not helping you reduce your depression and anxiety.

Need More Information?

If you are a woman who struggles with depression and anxiety, we can help. For more information, contact The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders in Delray Beach, Florida or call us today at 561-496-1094.

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Teen Group Therapy for Depression & Anxiety
Begins Fall 2016

group therapy for teens - teens support group

Group Therapy for Teens: To Fight Depression & Anxiety

Beginning in the Fall of 2016

To register, please call (561) 496-1094

Group Facilitator: Edan M. Alcalay, Psy.D. The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders

Join Dr. Alcalay as he facilitates this interactive and unique group for teenagers who will learn various ways of developing positive coping skills to better control depression and/or anxiety. Group therapy will also focus on ways to improve self-esteem, help to support one another in a safe environment, and problem solving and communication skills, and more.

This group therapy is a six week commitment with sessions covering:

  • Session 1: Introduction to Group Therapy
  • Session 2: Self Esteem
  • Session 3: Coping Skills and Positive Thinking
  • Session 4: Overcoming Social Anxiety
  • Session 5: Communication Skills
  • Session 6: Improving Problem Solving Skills

When is the group beginning? 
Groups will begin in the Fall of 2016

Where is the workshop being held? 
The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders
4600 Linton Blvd, Suite 320, Delray Beach, FL 33445
(561) 496-1094

Who is it open to?
Teenagers

What is the cost?
$100 per group session—with a 6 week commitment.

If you have questions or are interested in attending please RSVP by contacting the staff at The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders or call (561) 496-1094.


About the Facilitator

Dr. Eden M. Alcalay specializes in treating children and adolescents suffering from problems such as: sexual abuse, physical abuse, substance abuse, trauma, PTSD. He also helps children and adolescents who are bipolar and/or suffer from psychosis. His education helps parents with parenting skills. Dr. Alcalay provides individual therapy and group therapy services.

In addition to providing traditional psychotherapy and psychological testing, Dr. Alcalay is a certified E.M.D.R. (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing)therapist which is used in the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. This treatment method has received a high level of recommendation by the American Psychiatric Association and the American Psychological Association.

Dr. Alcalay received his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology with a specialization in children at Carlos Albizu University (CAU) located in Miami, Florida. During his training, Dr. Alcalay conducted research on Teaching Responsible Behaviors to Adolescents, (TRBA). TRBA is designed as a prevention program to adolescents and their parents. The services of the program are focused on identifying and targeting early symptoms of aggression and depression in adolescents, providing psycho-education to parents and adolescents, promoting adolescent autonomy, self-efficacy and pro-social skills, and enhancing family life and communication. In addition to his research on TRBA, Dr. Alcalay studied the Program for Alcohol Abusing Adolescent using Combined Therapy & Exercise (PACTE).

He has developed many parenting workshops. As continuing his education, Dr. Alcalay has received advanced training from the Florida Psychoanalytic Center. Clinically, Dr. Alcalay has worked in substance abuse rehabilitation for adolescents and adults and in a Community Mental Health Clinic (CMHC) working with underprivileged populations. Subsequently, he continued at a Miami Children’s Hospital Psychiatry Department, conducting individual, group, and family psychotherapy for patients with severe childhood psychiatric problems (i.e. suicide). He received his post-doctoral training here at the Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders.

Dr. Alcalay is a member of the Association for Play Therapy (APT), United Way of Broward, and Florida Psychological Association (FPA). Dr. Alcalay is also a professor at Lynn University and conducts research on modern topics such as: The Anxiety Explosion, The Digital Era and its Impact on our Youth, Project Brain, and how Group Play can prevent mental disorders.

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Women’s Therapy Group

support group for women‚ women's group therapy

Women’s Therapy Group

Tuesdays 5:30 p.m.-6:45 p.m.

To register, please call (561) 496-1094

Group Leader: Christiane Blanco-Oilar, Ph.D. The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders

  • Women 21+ who are ready to establish more satisfying relationships with self/others, and therefore reduce significant stress from their lives and heal from hurtful relationships.
  • Gain deeper awareness of yourself and interactions with others. Learn and practice healthier ways of being with the support of other women in a safe therapeutic environment.
  • Cost: $75 per group session/$405 for 6 sessions paid in advance. Minimum six-week commitment.

Group only has room for 8 members, so please RSVP soon. Each interested member will undergo a 30-minute screening session with group leader for $50. Group will start when we have 4 members signed up.

Join Dr. Blanco-Oilar as she facilitates this interactive and unique group for women ages 21 and up.

When is the group beginning? 
Group will be held Tuesdays from 5:30 pm to 6:45 pm beginning as soon as there are a minimum of 4 members signed up.

Where is the workshop being held? 
The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders
4600 Linton Blvd, Suite 320, Delray Beach, FL 33445
(561) 496-1094

Who is it open to?
The workshop is open to women, aged 21 and up

What is the cost?
$75 per group session/$405 for 6 sessions paid in advance. Each interested woman will undergo a 30 minute screening session with the group leader in advance for $50. Groups begin when there are 4 members signed up.

Interested in RSVPing for the group or have questions? Contact the staff at The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders or call (561) 496-1094.


About the Presenter

Dr. Christiane Blanco-Oilar is a licensed psychologist who graduated from the University of Oregon where she received a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology in 2008. She was the proud recipient of a Dissertation Award from the American Psychological Association.

For almost 15 years, Dr. Blanco-Oilar has specialized in treating adults in diverse settings including university counseling centers, hospitals, nursing homes and in private practice.

While she is a generalist helping clients with wide ranging concerns, Dr. Blanco-Oilar’s area of specialty is helping clients heal form recent or past trauma. She leads the Trauma and Resiliency Program at The Center for Anxiety and Mood Disorders.

Dr. Blanco-Oilar tailors her treatment to each client’s unique needs utilizing different psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, and mindfulness-based interventions.

She is also trained and certified EMDR therapist—certified by the EMDR International Association. EMDR is an evidence-based cutting edge treatment for trauma. Dr. Blanco-Oilar provides her psychological services, including EMDR, in English or Spanish, both with native fluency and depending on the preferences of the patient.

Dr. Blanco-Oilar is a member of the American Psychological Association, and the Florida Psychological Association. She is licensed to practice in Florida as well as in Illinois.

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FREE Workshop – The Digital Era & Its Impact on our Youth
Sep 17, 2016

negative impact of too much screen time on children

Free Workshop Series:

How to Parent in the Modern Era:

The Digital Era & Its Impact on our Youth

September 17, 2016

Register Now

American Youth spend more than 7 hours per day in front of a screen! For the growing brain, there are many negative impacts including neurological changes as well as psychological influences.

Dr. Edan M. Alcalay will discuss how screen time is manipulating us in many ways, and how learning is being negatively affected.

In this free parenting workshop he will discuss the following:

  • How the 1980’s was a pivotal time period
  • Discuss the adolescent stage of development
  • The effects of too much screen time
  • The pros & cons of Social Networking (i.e. Facebook)
  • Provide strategies to reduce screen time.

Who is this workshop for?
Parents of children of all ages, along with Caregivers and Professionals working with children

When is the workshop? 
Saturday, September 17, 2016 from 10:00 A.M. – 11:00 A.M.

Where is the workshop being held? 
4600 Linton Blvd
Delray Beach, FL

Cost?
The workshop is FREE. Space is limited so please RSVP early to ensure a seat is available.


Please fill out the form below to register for this FREE workshop.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

To RSVP please fill out the form above or contact the staff at The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders.

If you have questions about the workshop, contact Dr. Eden M. Alcalay or call 561-496-1094.


About the Presenter

Dr. Eden M. Alcalay specializes in treating children and adolescents suffering from problems such as: sexual abuse, physical abuse, substance abuse, trauma, PTSD. He also helps children and adolescents who are bipolar and/or suffer from psychosis. His education helps parents with parenting skills. Dr. Alcalay provides individual therapy and group therapy services.

In addition to providing traditional psychotherapy and psychological testing, Dr. Alcalay is a certified E.M.D.R. (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing) therapist which is used in the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. This treatment method has received a high level of recommendation by the American Psychiatric Association and the American Psychological Association.

Dr. Alcalay received his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology with a specialization in children at Carlos Albizu University (CAU) located in Miami, Florida. During his training, Dr. Alcalay conducted research on Teaching Responsible Behaviors to Adolescents, (TRBA). TRBA is designed as a prevention program to adolescents and their parents. The services of the program are focused on identifying and targeting early symptoms of aggression and depression in adolescents, providing psycho-education to parents and adolescents, promoting adolescent autonomy, self-efficacy and pro-social skills, and enhancing family life and communication. In addition to his research on TRBA, Dr. Alcalay studied the Program for Alcohol Abusing Adolescent using Combined Therapy & Exercise (PACTE).

He has developed many parenting workshops. As continuing his education, Dr. Alcalay has received advanced training from the Florida Psychoanalytic Center. Clinically, Dr. Alcalay has worked in substance abuse rehabilitation for adolescents and adults and in a Community Mental Health Clinic (CMHC) working with underprivileged populations. Subsequently, he continued at a Miami Children’s Hospital Psychiatry Department, conducting individual, group, and family psychotherapy for patients with severe childhood psychiatric problems (i.e. suicide). He received his post-doctoral training here at the Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders.

Dr. Alcalay is a member of the Association for Play Therapy (APT), United Way of Broward, and Florida Psychological Association (FPA). Dr. Alcalay is also a professor at Lynn University and conducts research on modern topics such as: The Anxiety Explosion, The Digital Era and its Impact on our Youth, Project Brain, and how Group Play can prevent mental disorders.

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FREE Workshop – Helping Your Child Through Divorce
Sep 10, 2016

divorce therapy for children-helping kids through divorce workshop

Free Workshop Series:

Helping Your Child Through Divorce:

How to Help Children Adjust and Cope when Divorce Happens

September 10, 2016

Register Now

  • Is your child having difficulties coping with divorce?
  • Does your child feel like he or she is stuck in the middle of the divorce?
  • Are you having conflict with the other parent?

Join Dr. Selkin as he leads an interactive and educational workshop that is intended to help you learn more about divorce and how it can impact children.

Children may experience a range of emotions when dealing with the divorce of their parents. This workshop will focus on practical skills that you can implement to help your children adjust more effectively with divorce.

Who is this workshop for?
Anyone—but especially parents of children of all ages, along with caregivers and professionals working with children whose parents are going through divorce.

When is the workshop? 
Saturday, September 10, 2016 from 10:00 A.M. – 11:00 A.M.

Where is the workshop being held? 
Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders
4600 Linton Blvd
Delray Beach, FL

Cost?
The workshop is FREE. Space is limited so please RSVP early to ensure a seat is available.


Please fill out the form below to register for this FREE workshop.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

To RSVP please fill out the form above or contact the staff at The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders.

If you have questions about the workshop, contact Dr. Jesse Selkin or call 561-496-1094.


About the Presenter

Dr. Jesse Selkin, is a Post Doctorate Fellow, who treats adolescents and adults with anxiety disorders including panic attacks, obsessions and compulsions, excessive worrying, and agoraphobia both in person and via videoconference. Dr. Selkin also treats self-esteem issues related to depression, bipolar disorder, and relationship issues.

Dr. Selkin received his doctorate in clinical psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology – Los Angeles campus. He has had previous clinical experience which includes working in community mental health centers, residential programs for substance abuse, and group outpatient practice. He is bilingual and works with both English and Spanish-speaking patients of all ages.

He frequently conducts presentations and workshops within the community and has presented on various topics dealing with children—including school refusal, social anxiety, and excessive worrying. He has also presented on “Cyber-Bullying for Students” and in Los Angeles on “Leadership” and “Self-Motivation.”

Dr. Selkin believes in tailoring his therapeutic approach to fit each individual and situation. He has extensive training in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which is the best-supported and most effective treatment for children and adolescents who have experienced trauma that causes emotional and behavioral problems. He also has been trained in Seeking Safety and Motivational Interviewing, which are evidence-based practices that relate to trauma and substance abuse.

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Child Anxiety – Divorce Therapy for Children

Going through a divorce is stressful enough for the couple involved, but when children are added to the mix, it can bring a youngster’s fears to the forefront and trigger a cycle of child anxiety. The youth suddenly finds his or her world fracturing apart as the family divides into separate households. And, often the child has to adjust to living in a new home or going to a new school in addition to coping with their parent’s split.

Among other things, a divorce can increase a child’s aggression, bring up issues of separation anxiety, and negatively impact either (or both) the social and school performances of the youngster. It also increases the stress levels in children who already suffer from anxiety issues or mood disorders and can initiate anxiety-related concerns in children who do not normally have them.

Helping Children Cope with Divorce

When parents divorce, their children often react by showing:

  • Regressive behaviors (bedwetting, tantrums, thumb sucking, refusing to go to bed)
  • Rebellious behaviors (anger, disobedience, or (in an older child) disregard for the parents)
  • Increased episodes of crying or whining
  • Feel “sick” when they are healthy or becoming clingy
  • Separation anxiety
  • Blaming themselves for the divorce

The following are some ways that you, as a parent, can help diffuse some of the tension and child anxiety when going through a divorce:

  • Respect your child’s feelings and encourage them to talk to you about their fears. You may not have all the answers, but sometimes just listening and being supportive to your child can be enough.
  • Remember that your child has lost something, too. They have lost their time with one parent when they are with the other parent and, in many cases, have lost their familiar surroundings, peers, and maybe even a beloved pet or best friend.
  • Reassure your child that, no matter what, you love them now and will always love them. Be sure they understand that the divorce was not their fault and that there is nothing they could have done to prevent it.
  • Try to keep the same routines for bedtime, homework, play time, etc. New routines might need to be added (for example: going to the other parent’s house every Friday night), but keeping as close as possible to the same schedule helps children feel secure. It lets them know what to expect.
  • Rituals also create a sense of safety for your child. A family ritual such as “game night” creates an anchor for your child and gives them a sense of familiarity and a way to relate within their new world.

How Divorce Therapy for Children Can Help

Many times children will adjust to the breakup of a marriage after a “settling in” period, but in the case of youngsters who already have some anxiety, therapy might be the answer to helping children cope with divorce.

Divorce therapy for children is usually conducted through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This type of treatment is based on the theory that our thoughts cause our behavior and our resulting feelings – other people do not cause them. By understanding this and learning to modify our reactions, we can influence our emotions in a positive way so we can feel better about things we can not change. Becoming aware of inaccurate or negative thinking allows your child to change to a more positive way of thinking in order to decrease their anxiety.

Need More Information?

Is your child struggling with your divorce? We offer divorce therapy for children in a safe, supportive South Florida environment. For more information, contact The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders in Delray Beach, Florida or call us today at 561-496-1094.

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Childhood Obesity: Weight Control and Your Child – Conceding the Battle to Win the War

In this day and age in which the media has exposed the epidemic of childhood obesity and associated diabetes, it is impossible for parents to not be more attuned to this issue with their children.  For better and worse, we have access to data, research and information like never before.  This is clearly the case in the area of food, nutrition and physiology.  No doubt, understanding the implications of how we feed our bodies and how we move our bodies is invaluable information.  What can often be a difficult task is translating this information into utilizable material that our children can understand.

As parents, we must be persistently aware of, not just the information we deliver, but HOW we deliver it.  Sometimes being accurate is not enough to help children benefit.  Sometimes accurate information can be useless, if not harmful, when delivered ineffectively.  In trying to educate children about food, weight, nutrition and healthy eating, we must be sensitive to the subtle nuances in our delivery.  We, as parents and caretakers, must be aware of how we deliver potentially embarrassing or shameful material to children.

Phillip says to his mother, “Amanda told me that I’m fat.  I want to lose some weight.  How much should I lose?”  “Well,” said her mom, “Dr. Speilman said on your last check up that you could stand to lose five pounds.  Why don’t we start there?”  Phillip agrees and quietly walks away.  Conversation over?  Hardly. For all practical purposes, Phillip’s mother likely feels like this was a good opportunity for her to address his pediatrician’s concern about his childhood obesity.  She probably feels relieved that someone else did her the service of alleviating her of hurting her son’s feelings.  What she failed to realize is that she delivered the confirming “blow” to Phillip’s self esteem.

In discussing matters of this nature, it is essential to realize the subtle impacts you may have.  It is more fruitful to address the biological and medical aspects of this discussion and to STEER CLEAR OF NUMBER OF POUNDS! For example, you might address blood elevations such as cholesterol or pulse as the impetus for change, or simply the concept of supporting the development of a healthy heart that will “take care of you,” or “keep your body strong for the rest of your life.”  By externalizing the issue of childhood obesity, you reduce the sensitive issue of self-esteem or physical acceptance.  Further, you engage your child in a process about which your child can be more curious and motivated.

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Media-Related Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Veterans of the Vietnam war have sadly raised our awareness of the existence of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD is a chronic, sometimes lifelong condition resulting in pathological changes in mood, thinking and behavior. It can be incapacitating and lead to job loss, family turmoil and dissolution, poor quality of life and often suicide.

We now understand that the development of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder has its basis in enduring alterations of brain function, which helps to explain the chronic, persistent nature of this disorder. Treatment can be helpful but frustratingly inadequate. Unfortunately, there is no “magic bullet” medication. Research has supported the use of specific psychotherapeutic protocols but community availability can be a problem.

While PTSD’s origins stemmed from war related trauma, we now understand that a wide spectrum of life stressors can result in this disorder. The twenty-first century has brought terror attacks to the world stage. “Lone wolf” attacks, Islamic terrorism, and most recently, violence against the police have become a national preoccupation. In previous decades, our awareness of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder was based on either our familiarity with individuals suffering from this disorder or the occasional print news article. However, the media technology revolution of our current century has brought us both the blessing and curse of 24/7 connectivity to world and national events.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder  and Media Coverage of Traumatic Events

For several years, the therapists at the Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders have been very concerned about the repetitive exposure to traumatic life events that people experience via internet and television broadcasts. Recent terror attacks around the world are cases in point, for one cannot avoid the media’s persistent replaying of the visual imagery and dramatic accounts of these human tragedies.

Before the media revolution we learned of traumatic events through the newspaper, the 6:00 pm news, or the news hour on the radio. One only has to recall the steady calm recitation of bad news by the likes of Walter Cronkite and compare it to the present day dramatic and horrifying presentation of similar news stories. Clearly, horror sells and is profitable. We have become captive audiences for this traumatic exposure. To make matters worse, we are transfixed by it and have difficulty “unplugging” ourselves from the TV set or internet.

This brings our therapists to their greatest clinical concern. Repetitive exposure to graphic trauma has an impact on our central nervous systems. Even though we may not be the victim of the terror, we are passively being terrorized. Adults have a greater capacity to process such horror, but imagine the difficulties this creates for our children. Their immature nervous systems and reasoning ability pose significant obstacles for coping with this type of daily non-stop life stress. We fear that we are all becoming victims, in our own way, of the “madness” we are being exposed to.

We have a responsibility to control our children’s exposure to traumatic media and to prevent the damage that can result. As adults, we should heed this advice, as well. Ultimately, we must change the way that public media communicates traumatic events, however, this is easier said than done.

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Adolescents Stand Up To Bullying Group:
Begins August 30, 2016

anti bullying group counseling for teens in Delray Beach, FL

Adolescent Stand-Up to Bullying Group

standuptobullying.jpgWednesdays 6:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m.

To register, please call (561) 496-1094

Group Leader: Jesse Selkin, Psy.D. The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders

  • Is your child being bullied?
  • Has your child been bullied in the past?
  • Does your child feel isolated?
  • Is your child having difficulty coping with emotions?

Join Dr. Selkin as he facilitates this interactive and unique group for boys and girls ages 10-15 who will learn various ways of coping, tips for standing up to bullying, help support one another in a safe environment, and skills to move forward with his or her dreams in life!

Your child will learn how to cope with:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Anger
  • Self-esteem issues

When is the group beginning? 
Group will be held Wednesdays from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm beginning Wednesday, August 30, 2016

Where is the workshop being held? 
The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders
4600 Linton Blvd, Suite 320, Delray Beach, FL 33445
(561) 496-1094

Who is it open to?
The workshop is open to adolescents aged 10-15

What is the cost?
$75 per group session. Each interested child will undergo a 25 minute screening session with Dr. Selkin in advance for $50.

If you have questions please email Dr. Selkin or contact the staff at The Center for Treatment of Anxiety and Mood Disorders.

To register, please call (561) 496-1094


About the Presenter

Dr Jesse SelkinDr. Jesse Selkin, is a Post Doctorate Fellow, who treats adolescents and adults with anxiety disorders including panic attacks, obsessions and compulsions, excessive worrying, and agoraphobia both in person and via videoconference. Dr. Selkin also treats self-esteem issues related to depression, bipolar disorder, and relationship issues.

Dr. Selkin received his doctorate in clinical psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology – Los Angeles campus. He has had previous clinical experience which includes working in community mental health centers, residential programs for substance abuse, and group outpatient practice. He is bilingual and works with both English and Spanish-speaking patients of all ages.

He frequently conducts presentations and workshops within the community and has presented on various topics dealing with children—including school refusal, social anxiety, and excessive worrying. He has also presented on “Cyber-Bullying for Students” and in Los Angeles on “Leadership” and “Self-Motivation.”

Dr. Selkin believes in tailoring his therapeutic approach to fit each individual and situation. He has extensive training in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which is the best-supported and most effective treatment for children and adolescents who have experienced trauma that causes emotional and behavioral problems. He also has been trained in Seeking Safety and Motivational Interviewing, which are evidence-based practices that relate to trauma and substance abuse.

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