Once insight is offered and negative cognitive or behavioral patterns identifed, CBT, an evidenced based treatment, is helpful in replacing assumptive errors with truths, changing destructive behavioral patterns and generating options. Through careful surveys of actions, thoughts and belief testing, clients learn to look for the evidence in held truths rather than responding to emotional impulses and cognitive errors. CBT is considered a "gold standard" in working with depression and anxiety, as by moderating depressive or anxious thoughts, it is possible to reduce depressive symptoms. This form of therapy helps to reframe negative thoughts to more accurate and constructive conclusions. I have been teaching CBT to graduate students, and other mental health professionals for many years, contributing a chapter to the groundbreaking text, Cognitive Behavior Therapy in Clinical Social Work.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy
DBT is a life-changing evidenced based approach for struggles related to maintaining emotional control, increasing interpersonal effectiveness through a skills based approach to more effective management of feelings. Emotions are important indicators of affective experience; however, the ability to manage rapid escalations can make the difference between impulsive destructive options and a life which manifests more balanced choices due to emotional control. Increasing positive emotions can bring new quality to daily life, Mindfulness can help build self-esteem. Through practicing DBT skills and identifying alternatives to reactive behaviors, individuals learn to anticipate and/or moderate response, increasing self-respect. I have been intensively trained in DBT, completing the Advanced Intensive with Marsha Linehan in 2013. I employ DBT with a variety of clients, including skill sets for new mothers. I have also widely presented, educated and written on DBT, including in my book Perinatal and Postpartum Mood Disorders: Perspectives and Treatment Guide for the Healthcare Professional.
IPT offers a humanistic approach to life's problems, evaluating them through the perspective that the problem is the problem, not the person! Interpersonal Psychotherapy targets four key areas of life responsible for much internal and interpersonal strife; grief and loss, role transitions, interpersonal disputes and interpersonal deficits. This universal validation of the kinds of suffering experienced by all human beings, keeps the focus on the issue rather than pathologizing normal, healthy reactions to life's challenges. At the same time, IPT recognizes the need for support as individuals transition among various life stages, roles and disputes and losses. My webinar presentation on Interpersonal Psychotherapy for NYU's Office of Global and Lifelong Learning can be accessed here.
EMDR - Eye Movement and Desensitization and Reprocessing
This evidenced based approach was developed to help sufferers of PTSD and other acute anxiety states release material that gets "caught" during a traumatic experience in the "reptilian" part of our brains. Talk therapy alone is often insufficient to release these disturbing recollections, resulting in persistently intrusive and distressing thoughts and images accompanied by pervasive feelings of danger or discomfort. Initially controversial, today EMDR is considered to be a premier trauma treatment for PTSD and other discomforting symptoms of trauma such as intrusive thoughts. I have been utilizing this effective protocal since 2001, when I received training while employed at Hackensack University Medical Center's trauma clinic.