Veteran’s Day Weekend Sale

During the weekend leading up to Veterans Day, Professional Development Resources is featuring ten of its continuing education courses that train professionals to treat mental health problems that are seen in many members of the military and their families. The following courses are 20% off through Monday, November 12, 2012:

Veterans DayOne of the most serious conditions among those exposed to combat is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

According to the National Institute for Mental Health, PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal, in which grave physical harm occurred or was threatened. Traumatic events that may trigger PTSD include violent personal assaults, natural or human-caused disasters, accidents, or military combat.

People with PTSD have persistent frightening thoughts and memories of their ordeal and feel emotionally numb, especially with people they were once close to. They may experience sleep problems, feel detached or numb, or be easily startled.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs summarizes the probabilities of certain groups having PTSD at some point in their lives:

  • About 7-8% of the general population
  • About 11-20% of Veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars (Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom)
  • About 10% of Gulf War (Desert Storm) Veterans
  • About 30% of Vietnam Veterans

“The numbers are staggering,” says Leo Christie, PhD, CEO of Professional Development Resources. “A recent White House Executive Order dated August 12, 2012 states: “Since September 11, 2001, more than two million service members have deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan. Long deployments and intense combat conditions require optimal support for the emotional and mental health needs of our service members and their families. The need for mental health services will only increase in the coming years as the Nation deals with the effects of more than a decade of conflict.”

The stresses that are part of active deployment – particularly in combat areas – do not cease when service members finish their tour of duty and return to civilian life. The statistics noted above are remarkable when one considers that it is not only the individual service member who is affected by the symptoms, but also his or her family members. This means that specialty mental health services may be required for marital issues as well as child behavior problems and other family stressors.

Christie adds “with increasing numbers of returning service personnel and their families presenting in acute distress, it is unlikely that any mental health professional will NOT encounter them in his or her clinical office. Our goal is to offer them the specialized information they need in order to deliver effective treatment.”

“We are very pleased to have these courses and to offer them for accredited continuing education units,” says Christie. “I hope this special offer will make them available to every professional who works with veterans and their families.”


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Heart Attacks Can Trigger PTSD

By Angela Haupt

PTSD a Risk Among Heart Attack Patients

Heart Attacks Can Trigger Post-Traumatic StressHeart attacks can trigger post-traumatic stress disorder, new research suggests. As many as 1 in 8 people who survive a heart attack develop symptoms of PTSD, such as frequent nightmares or flashbacks; intrusive thoughts; and elevated blood pressure or heart rate. These symptoms also appear to increase the risk of having a second heart attack, according to findings published in the journal PLoS One. PTSD, an anxiety disorder that develops after a traumatic event involving the threat of injury or death, often affects soldiers returning home from war. A heart attack is a terrifying experience in its own right, the study authors say. “About 1.4 million people [in the United States] have heart attacks every year; that’s as many people as are in our entire active military,” study author Donald Edmondson, an assistant professor of behavioral medicine at Columbia University Medical Center, told Time. “That feeling that your life is in danger — the loss of control when your body turns on you — is something that these people have a hard time forgetting.”


Related Online Continuing Education Courses:

More courses on PTSD:

Mental Health Month: Get Connected

Mental Health America first celebrated Mental Health Month in May 1949 to “raise awareness of mental health conditions and mental wellness for all.” Since then, a strong focus on mental health advocacy, awareness, and education in May is tradition.

To keep with tradition, Professional Development Resources is offering 25% off the following online mental health continuing education courses during May:

Visit for more details.

This year, Mental Health America is addressing these important issues through two themes:

Do More for 1 in 4 is a call to action to help the 1 in 4 American adults who live with a diagnosable, treatable mental health condition and the fact that they can go on to live full and productive lives. Download the Do More For 1in4 Toolkit.

The second theme, Healing Trauma’s Invisible Wounds, focuses on the impact of traumatic events on individuals and communities. It centers around asking the person-based question: “What happened to you?” Download the Healing Trauma’s Invisible Wounds Toolkit.

Go Green for Earth Week!

Earth Day 2011

“If one person takes one course online rather than traveling to a conference, he or she can achieve savings in energy, fuel costs, greenhouse gasses, paper and ink waste associated with printed reading and registration materials, water usage for hotel stays, waste from disposable food service products, and landfill disposal of used exhibition hall materials,” says Leo Christie, PhD, CEO of Professional Development Resources. “Multiply this times 100 or 1,000, and the environmental impact is enormous. Best of all, this is one place where environmental responsibility and user convenience intersect. Everybody wins.”

In celebration of Earth Week 2011, Professional Development Resources is contributing to the Billion Acts of Green movement by spotlighting the environmental benefits of a green education and offering special pricing on a number of its online courses. We invite our customers to join in by taking courses online instead of traveling to seminars and downloading and viewing on screen instead of consuming paper goods. Downloading is 90% more Earth-friendly than shipping packaged courses. If downloading our courses seems daunting, don’t worry! We’ve got the information and instructions to take you through downloading, completing and earning credit for courses:

Online Courses give you instant access to course reading materials and CE test (nothing is mailed). Course fee includes the downloadable reading materials (PDF document) and CE test (HTML format). Click here for more info!

The following online courses are being offered at 50% off regular price in honor of Earth Week:

Alcohol and Intimate Partner Violence | 2-Hour Online Course | Reg $24 | Go Green Promotion $12! | This course, which was developed by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), is focused on the definitions, profiles, detection and treatment of intimate partner violence (IPV) that is associated with alcohol abuse. It explores the complex relationship between alcohol and intimate partner violence for both victims and perpetrators, addressing various models that attempt to explain this relationship. The course describes the signs of alcohol-related intimate partner violence and a number of techniques for assessing and intervening with individuals who might be affected by or engaging in alcohol-related intimate partner violence. Appendices include the Michigan Alcohol Screening Test (MAST), a danger assessment protocol, and a beginning dialogue for an interviewing technique that clinicians can use to initiate a discussion about alcohol and IPV. NIAAA | 2005 | 24 pages | Course #20-23

Diagnosing ADHD in Adults | 3-Hour Online Course | Reg $42 | Go Green Promotion $21! | This course will describe the unique ways in which the symptoms of ADHD manifest in adults, including the distinction between attention deficit and attention regulation. It also includes a discussion about the difficulties of accurately diagnosing ADHD in adults and the reasons the disorder is simultaneously over- and under-diagnosed. The DSM-IV diagnostic criteria for ADHD – as they apply to adult functioning – are placed into a context of the actual “soft signs” that can help clinicians identify areas of functional weakness for clients with ADHD. The author lists and details the components of a comprehensive diagnostic interview and emphasizes the value of collateral sources of historical information needed to establish an accurate diagnosis. Various formal assessment instruments are described, along with commentary about their utility in the diagnosis of adult ADHD. Finally, there is a section on the important area of comorbid conditions like depression and anxiety that frequently obscure and/or accompany ADHD. 2007 | 32 pages | 20 posttest questions | Course #30-38

Dysphagia: Guide to Establishing a Restorative Mealtime Program | 2-Hour Online Course | Reg $28 | Go Green Promotion $14! | This course will enable therapists in long-term care or post-acute rehabilitation facilities to present staff training that offers strategies and techniques for implementing a Restorative Mealtime Program for the purpose of making dining safe and enjoyable, increasing resident independence at mealtimes, and managing decreases in ability as disease processes progress. Also included are descriptions of dysphagic indicators, lists of aspiration precautions, methods for ascertaining needed levels of assistance, case studies, and a method for monitoring adherence to swallow safety standards. The author includes useful forms, checklists, and diagrams with limited permission for course participants to reproduce handouts for their own use in daily practice. Course #20-26 | 2010 | 34 pages | 20 posttest questions

PTSD – What is It? | 1-Hour Online Course | Reg $12 | Go Green Promotion $6! | This course provides an overview of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It describes the diagnostic criteria, prevalence of PTSD in veteran and civilian samples, comorbid conditions, longitudinal course, and risk factors. Empirically validated treatment options are briefly discussed. The course is based on one of a series of activities from the Department of Veterans Affairs – National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder – PTSD 101 curriculum. PTSD 101 is a web-based curriculum of diverse topics focusing on issues related to combat stress/PTSD. This course consists of the speaker’s original lecture and selected slides transcribed verbatim without editorial modifications. 2007 | 16 pages | 15 posttest questions | Course #10-24

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