We believe that the goal of psychotherapy is to help you understand your thoughts and feelings, gain insight into your patterns of behavior, and promote healthy coping strategies and responsible choices. There are many ways to accomplish this, based on your own specific needs and issues. Below are some common reasons for seeking psychotherapy.
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- feeling stressed or anxious?
- have problems with alcohol or drugs?
- experiencing difficulty in relationships?
- suffering intense feelings of anxiety?
- having trouble controlling your anger?
- feeling depressed?
- feeling uncomfortable around others?
- having difficulty paying attention or focusing?
- engaging in repetitive behaviors, such as nail biting or hair pulling?
- experiencing marital and/or family problems?
- experiencing stress-related physical problems?
- suffered through a traumatic experience earlier in life?
- having trouble sleeping?
SOCIAL ANXIETY: After depression and alcohol dependence, social anxiety is ranked as the third most common mental health disorder in the United States. It is characterized by a strong fear of being humiliated or embarrassed in social situations. Sufferers of social anxiety may either avoid the situation or feel distressed about attending or participating in an event. Social anxiety often starts out as simple shyness but can become a disruptive lifetime condition. It more commonly affects women and many times runs in families. Fortunately, there are several forms of therapy that can effectively treat this disorder.
STRESS/ANXIETY: We all experience stress and anxiety from time to time. However, when persistent worrying or stress interferes with your daily functioning, it is important to seek help. Anxiety can range from mild to severe; while symptoms generally begin in childhood, the feelings can persist throughout one's life. Psychotherapy can be quite effective with people who suffer from anxiety disorders or have difficulties managing stress levels.
SEVERE ANXIETY: Panic is a severe and disruptive form of anxiety. A panic attack can happen sometimes without warning. It is a sudden episode of intense fear often characterized by physical reactions including sweating, rapid heartbeat, dizziness, nausea and feeling out of control. Therapy can help you manage severe anxiety and develop coping strategies.
OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER: Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is characterized by obsessions and compulsions that interferer with daily functioning. Obsessions are persistent and recurrent thoughts, impulses and images that cause severe anxiety and worry. Compulsions are repetitive physical or mental acts aimed at trying to neutralize the anxiety caused by the obsessions. OCD can have a significant impact on daily functioning and interfere with normal routines and relationships. OCD symptoms manifest in many different ways. Some common symptoms may involve excessive checking, washing, ordering, arranging, and/or scrupulosity or moral dilemmas.
Cognitive-Behavioral therapy is quite effective in treating individuals who suffer from OCD or have OCD-like behaviors.
STRESS-RELATED MEDICAL PROBLEMS: Many times, physical ailments such as headaches or back pain have a psychological component. That is to say, high stress levels can exacerbate pre-existing physical ailments and/or cause damage to the immune system, the heart, the digestive system and more. By learning how to better manage stress, you can promote both your physical and psychological well being.
POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS SYNDROME: When you are exposed to a life-threatening or otherwise traumatic event, you may repeatedly re-live the event through flashbacks and nightmares. Many people with PTSD feel detached and have trouble sleeping and concentrating. The Center for Psychology's therapists are extremely knowledgeable about trauma and its reactions and can help you develop strategies to help ease the frightening memories and associated symptoms.
DEPRESSION: Depression is a disorder that often results from biological and chemical causes. The three most common kinds are:
- Major Depression involves symptoms that interfere with the ability to work, sleep, study, eat, and in general, enjoy one's life.
- Dysthymia is less severe but often results in long-term, chronic symptoms. It is not as debilitating as Major Depression, but can keep individuals from feeling good or functioning well over long periods of time.
- Bipolar disorder is also called manic-depressive disorder. It is characterized by severe mood changes: severe highs (mania) and lows (depression). Sometimes the mood switches are dramatic and rapid. In the depressed cycle, one can have any or all of the symptoms of a depressive disorder. In the manic cycle, the individual may be overactive, over talkative, and have a great deal of energy. Mania often affects thinking, judgment, and social behavior in ways that cause serious problems and/or embarrassment.
ATTENTION DEFICIT/HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER: ADHD is characterized by difficulties paying attention and/or hyperactivity and impulsive behavior. It is estimated that between three and five percent of children are affected by ADHD. It had been thought that most ADHD sufferers outgrow the condition by adolescence, but researchers now understand that in many people, the symptoms continue into adulthood and can create significant problems. Adults with ADHD tend to be distracted easily, are forgetful and sometime have trouble finishing projects. They're often disorganized and have difficulty making decisions. The psychologists at The Center for Psychology have a great deal of experience and success diagnosing and treating Attention Deficit Disorder in both children and adults.
ANGER MANAGEMENT: Sometimes having a quick temper or difficulties managing frustration can cause relationship problems at home, work, or school. Therapy can be helpful in learning to identify triggers and developing healthy coping strategies. One important aspect of managing anger is improving ones self-awareness and emotional competence.
RELATIONSHIPS: Relationships are the building blocks of our lives. Healthy relationships can help promote our sense of security and comfort. However, when we experience conflict or strains in our relationships, it can be very de-stabilizing and stressful. Many times relationship problems are the result of poor communication. Therapy can help to promote insight into relationship problems and the contributing factors.
MARITAL & FAMILY ISSUES: Family and Marital Therapy typically involves a more systemic approach to treatment. Within families and marriages, there are disagreements or conflicts. The key to successful relationships is the willingness and ability to deal with those problems in a positive way that respects each person's needs within the system. Many times, a therapist can help develop communication and behavior patterns that couples and families can apply to defuse interpersonal struggles (e.g., before they become destructive).
SLEEP DIFFICULTIES: Problems with sleeping are typically associated with certain psychological disorders such as anxiety or depression. By identifying and treating the underlying issues, we can help you sleep better; and conversely, by promoting better sleeping habits, you may be better able to deal with the underlying psychological issues.
- Many times, addictive behaviors grow out of both genetic and environmental factors. An individual can develop an addiction to a variety of substances and behaviors.
- Thinking about the activity a lot even when not doing it.
- Inability to control the amount of time spent doing the activity.
- Increasing the amount of time that is spent doing the activity.
- Denying there is a problem, even when many things are obviously going wrong.
- Hiding the activity from family and friends.
- When unable to do the activity, becoming irritable, moody, tearful, angry, or hostile.
- The activity becomes more important than relationships.
- Forgetting or ignoring family events such as birthdays and visits from friends because of involvement with the activity.
- Extreme, unpredictable mood swings.
- Blaming others for one's own troubles and failing to take responsibility for one's own actions.
- Headaches, stomach disorders, and other unexplained and ongoing physical symptoms.
- Neglecting one's appearance and doing hurtful or illegal things.