Building Resilience in your Young Client – It has long been observed that there are certain children who experience better outcomes than others who are subjected to similar adversities, and a significant amount of literature has been devoted to the question of why this disparity exists. Research has largely focused on what has been termed “resilience.” Health professionals are treating an increasing number of children who have difficulty coping with 21st century everyday life. Issues that are hard to deal with include excessive pressure to succeed in school, bullying, divorce, or even abuse at home. This course provides a working definition of resilience and descriptions of the characteristics that may be associated with better outcomes for children who confront adversity in their lives. It also identifies particular groups of children – most notably those with developmental challenges and learning disabilities – who are most likely to benefit from resilience training. The bulk of the course – presented in two sections – offers a wide variety of resilience interventions that can be used in therapy, school, and home settings. Course #30-72 | 2014 | 53 pages | 21 posttest questions
Ethics and Social Media – Is it useful or appropriate (or ethical or therapeutic) for a therapist and a client to share the kinds of information that are routinely posted on Social Networking Services (SNS) like Facebook, Twitter, and others? How are psychotherapists to handle “Friending” requests from clients? What are the threats to confidentiality and therapeutic boundaries that are posed by the use of social media sites, texts, or tweets in therapist-client communication? The purpose of this course is to offer psychotherapists the opportunity to examine their practices in regard to the use of social networking services in their professional relationships and communications. Included are ethics topics such as privacy and confidentiality, boundaries and multiple relationships, competence, the phenomenon of friending, informed consent, and record keeping. A final section offers recommendations and resources for the ethical use of social networking and the development of a practice social media policy. Course #20-75 | 2013 | 28 pages | 14 posttest questions
CE Credit: 2 Hours
Regular Price: $32 50% Off Today Only: $16!
This course addresses a variety of clinical topics, including: Psychopathy important to understand in clinical practice; Is marijuana an appropriate treatment for ADD/ADHD?; Internet pornography addiction cause discomfort to some therapists…
Course #20-67 | 2012 | 28 pages | 15 posttest questions
Professional Development Resources is approved as a provider of continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB #1046); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC#5590); the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Association of Alcoholism & Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC #000279); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR #PR001); the Continuing Education Board of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA #AAUM); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA #3159); and various state licensing boards.
Recently, an article appeared in the New York Times reporting on the use of marijuana for treating children with ADD/ADHD. The Times article is just one of several that have been popping up since medical marijuana initiatives have been passed in a handful of states.
Initially, the use of marijuana to treat pain and suffering related to the side effects of chemotherapy and to increase appetite in HIV patients were used as the rationale for the medical marijuana initiatives. Now, however, a patient can get a prescription for almost any type of complaint. Anxiety, depression and other behavioral disorders are at the top of the complaint list, so it is not surprising that more disorders are being added to the list.
The Pharmacology of Marijuana
Briefly, marijuana is of the plant genus Cannabis. There are at least 66 active compounds found in marijuana but the most psychoactive compound is delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The human brain contains several groups of cannabinoid receptors where they are concentrated and distributed in different areas. These receptors are activated by the neurotransmitter anandamide, which THC mimics.
The main neuropsychological effects of THC and, perhaps the other 65 identified compounds, are on short-term memory, coordination, learning and problem solving. Physical endurance and performance functions also are affected by cannabinoids. THC is recognized as a very powerful psychoactive compound.
Drugs and Paradoxical Reaction
The foundational premise related to the medication treatment of attention deficit symptoms is rooted in the concept of paradoxical reaction. That is, these patients seem to react contrary to the mechanism of action for the class of drugs. Psychostimulants, for example, activate, produce heightened alertness, increased energy, appetite suppression and sometimes euphoria.
The main symptoms of ADD/ADHD include inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity. Psychostimulants, as a class of drug, should enhance many of the negative behaviors that are seen in ADD/ADHD, but behaviorally they do not. This is an example of paradoxical reaction.
Marijuana, generally, decreases alertness, memory, hyperactivity and impulsivity. It increases appetite and is a euphoric. The paradoxical reactions to marijuana may include heightened awareness and performance, paranoia, depression, anxiety, increased activity and impulsivity. Advocates of marijuana, such as psychiatrist Dr. Leonard Grinspoon, say that they would have no hesitation in giving youngsters with ADHD a trial of oral marijuana.
Moreover, they assert, “for some kids, it appears to be more effective than traditional treatments.” They also contend that marijuana has fewer potential dangers and side effects than the psychostimulants.
However, if psychostimulants do hold an edge over marijuana, it is that these drugs are standardized as to their composition, potency, dose and experience? Presently, there is no standardized marijuana compound, unless one wants to include Marinol, a drug synthesized from cannabis which is not under consideration as a treatment option.
Potency of marijuana varies significantly from plant to plant, region of origin and potency, among other variables. Moreover, there is no real control over the concentration of the other compounds found in marijuana, which clearly affect the mechanism of action of THC. Lastly, there is no control over potential adulteration through additives.
A Paradoxical Reaction to a Paradoxical Reaction
Without trying to use a play on words, it is easy to see that whatever the drug of choice, paradoxical reaction brings into question the entire treatment of ADD/ADHD with all medications. Adding marijuana into the mix, in my opinion, is questionable, at best.
There may be many good medical uses for marijuana but we need solid research and data to find out what they might be to justify its use in children and adults. There is sufficient data that casts significant doubt on the diagnoses of ADD/ADHD. There is a significant body of data that supports behavioral interventions as a first line treatment of these symptoms.
The common psyhopharmacological treatment for attention deficit disorders is psychostimulants, but there is a growing body of data on the potential danger of psychostimulants. Ritalin, Concerta and Strattera typically are the drugs of choice prescribed by physicians and psychiatrists.
Adding marijuana to the current list of medication options is very premature. Before even considering marijuana, it seems to me that the current use of psychostimulants also should be scrutinized as a treatment option. Many of the patients that I have treated after being referred for ADD/ADHD had long standing but undiscovered sleep disorders. Not surprisingly, psychostimulants do produce gains in performance with these patients. For too long many have accepted that ADD/ADHD are established conditions that need medical as opposed to behavioral treatment.
To date, not a solitary cause has yet been identified for ADHD. ADHD will likely prove to be an umbrella term for a number of behavioral and/or neurologically based disorders.
Furthermore, there hasn’t been any identified cause specific to ADD leaving open the likelihood that ADD may be a catch-all condition. The National Institutes of Health Consensus Development Conference and the American Academy of Pediatrics agree that there is no known biological basis for ADHD.
The more we review the literature on hyperactivity or ADD, the less certain we are as to what it is or whether it really exists as a standalone disorder. So, at issue, is not only the question of marijuana as a potential treatment for attention deficit problems, but should the use of psychostimulants in children also be re-evaluated?
Given the myriad, unknown pharmacological variables involved in the mechanism of action of marijuana, I believe that marijuana, at this time, is not and should not be taken as a serious treatment option for attention deficit symptoms.
Medical Marijuana is a 3-hour online CEU course that presents a summary of the current literature on the various medical, legal, educational, occupational, and ethical aspects of marijuana.
Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for all programs and content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; and by the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners.
When a client enters your office complaining of internet pornography addiction, your first response may be to run, hide from him or to refer him to another therapist. For many therapists discomfort in dealing with sexual issues will keep them from asking the most important question: “What kind of internet pornography are you viewing?”
Consider the difference in the pathology of the patient viewing videos of women being degraded and humiliated or other exploitive forms of pornography such as child porn or elder erotica (sometimes referred to as “granny porn”). The patient may be viewing consensual “vanilla” sex, “wife swapping” or voyeuristic websites.
For many individuals, the type of pornography that they are viewing may be reflective of a past trauma or deep-seated psychological issue, or it may tell a story about their sexual development. Our early childhood years can be formative for our developing sexuality.
Many clinicians use the term “arousal template” to describe an individual’s erotic map – or what it is they are stimulated by or attracted to. The arousal template includes things such as body types, partner characteristics, behaviors, sex acts, objects and settings that cause sexual pleasure for an individual.
For example, if one of your first sexual experiences included oral sex, this could be a powerful element on your arousal template. It is not uncommon for individuals who have arousal templates that are considered “deviant” to have experienced childhood trauma that distorted their sexuality at an early age.
The internet affords the opportunity for people to explore the far reaches of their sexuality, including viewing and/or participating in behaviors that they would be afraid to indulge in an intimate relationship. Cybersex users can explore new powerful templates that, when viewed repeatedly, can be strengthened and fixated. This is especially dangerous when the arousal template is unhealthy, such as child pornography.
The reality is that most therapists are unaware of the genres of pornography and the numerous typologies of fetish behaviors that exist online. Additionally, therapists may be uncomfortable exploring these issues with their clients. When this occurs, important assessment information is missed and clients are unable to process traumatic issues around their sexuality that may be confusing for them.
It is helpful for clinicians to have a general understanding of the common types of internet porn, so that they can ask pertinent questions during the assessment process.
Professional Development Resources has partnered with The National Psychologist to develop a timely new ‘practice tips’ series of online continuing education courses for psychologists, counselors, social workers and MFTs. These new 2-hour online courses address a variety of clinical topics, written by ‘experts’ in the prospective fields.
Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the Florida Board of Psychology and the Office of School Psychology and is CE Broker compliant (#50-1635).
In this new continuing education course for mental health professionals, A Therapist Reflects on the Use and Abuse of Power, Part 1, participants will read and answer questions about a series of twelve articles by Judith Barr, depth psychotherapist and author of Power Abused, Power Healed, to help explore more deeply their own relationship with power – on a personal and professional level – and that of clients. Topics covered in this course include the roots of feelings of powerlessness; how childhood wounds affect our parenting; the roots of corporate power abuse, both from the perspective of the abused and the perspective of the abuser; the roots of our relationships with sexuality, and more. Through examples from current life events explored in the articles, participants will come to recognize how their childhood experience affects their emotions and behaviors and those of their clients. They will also begin to comprehend the impact that the individual’s relationship with power has on our world, and how healing one’s own individual relationship with power can help to heal the abuse and misuse of power globally. Course #20-42 | 2010 | 12 posttest questions | 29 pages | 2 Hours CE for $24
My passion to help heal the misuse and abuse of power in our world began with the inspiration and calling to write the book Power Abused, Power Healed. At first, the calling was driven by abuses of power – both conscious and unconscious – in the healing professions. I witnessed them myself, heard about them from friends and colleagues, and received detailed painful accounts of them from clients.
As I wrote and worked toward publishing Power Abused, Power Healed, it became clear that abuses of power take place in every arena of life. Abuses were coming out into the light of day in limitless arenas in our world. Some of them … people didn’t anticipate, like teachers having affairs with their students. And some of them were very dis-illusioning … like priests molesting the children in their care, and those above the priests in the hierarchical structure not protecting the children.
I knew that when something comes out from being hidden, a profound opportunity for healing exists. As a result, witnessing the abuses coming out into view fed my passion to birth my book into the world, and to work to help inform, intrigue, and inspire people to become part of the healing of the misuse and abuse of power in our world.
Of course, the first step in becoming part of the healing is to recognize the issues related to power in your own life, inside and out, now and long ago. One of the ways I reached out to people and touched them was to publish an online newsletter, including articles that were inspired by events in our world. Events that held up a mirror to us of the misuse and abuse of power in our world, and therefore within us.
This course consists of one cycle, or series of these articles … my reflections on the misuse and abuse of power and our individual relationships with power. My reflections on the vast healing of the misuse and abuse of power to which each of us, especially we therapists, can contribute.
I offer this course with the hope that it will serve you well, within yourself, with your clients, and with all those you touch. It is my deepest hope that nothing in the course be misused or abused in any way.
About the Author:
Judith Barr, MS, LMHC, is passionate about her desire to help heal and transform the planet and is committed to making a difference one-by-one and on a global scale. She brings to her practice a tapestry of natural gifts interwoven with her life experience and professional skills – combining her deep roots in psychotherapy with her own growing-edge spiritual midwifery, the practice of serving as midwife to the birthing and journey of another’s soul. Judith practices in Brookfield, Connecticut. Her background includes private practice as a depth psychotherapist since 1975, an M.S. in Counseling, and licensure as a Mental Health Counselor in Florida, New York, and Connecticut. She has published a book, Power Abused, Power Healed; an audio series, The Spoken Word on Behalf of the Feminine; a Power Abused, Power Healed newsletter; and more than four dozen articles for both professionals and the general public. Judith offers her healing expertise in an array of formats, including working with individuals, groups, workshops, and consultations. In addition to this she offers training and supervision programs for healing arts professionals. Through her writing, her one-to-one and group work, and her speaking engagements, media appearances and teleconferences, Judith teaches about how we can help heal the misuse and abuse of power in all arenas of life, and how we can help to create sustainable safety in our world.
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us …”
Here we are in a time of immense challenges. And what appear to be vast opposites: joy and sorrow; love and hate; wealth and poverty; integrity and duplicity; magnificent use of power and abuse of power almost beyond comprehension; light and darkness; faith and disbelief.
What if in this time we are on the edge of new possibility, at the brink of truth – just as people were when they believed the earth was flat, only to discover it was not?
What if instead of experiencing the dualities – or polar opposites – and swinging back and forth between the poles, we choose to utilize the extremes to help us heal the split between opposites – within ourselves, between us, and as a result, in the world outside and all around us. In so doing, we create union. In so doing, we create oneness.
What if instead of being the opposite of light, darkness becomes a doorway to light? Think of the Winter Solstice – in the longest, darkest night of the year, the new light is birthed.
What if instead of being the opposite of faith, doubt is seen as a gateway into an even more solid faith?
What if instead of being the opposite of power well-used, abuse of power becomes an opening into power that is utilized magnificently?