Archive for the 'College Anxiety Phoenix Scottsdale' Category

Teen Anxiety Counseling Phoenix, Cave Creek, Scottsdale Az

Tuesday, August 7th, 2018

There are many reasons that are unique to each teen in relation to anxiety. Genetics is always unique and has an impact on anxiety so biologically you come into the world with genes that may be more or less prone to anxiety disorders. Your environment plays a huge role on stress and anxiety and how you cope with it. Some families have parents that teach their children skills to manage stress at a young age and some do not. Some families have a mixed approach with each parent doing their own parenting skills to address anxiety and stress. So the biggest factors in anxiety disorders are : Genetics, Life experiences, how we group up in our families , and environmental influences.

Anxiety disorders in teens can become worse at times with: side effect of a medication, emotional health issues, Alcohol or substance use or dependence, Marijuana use or dependence, Trauma ( emotional, mental, or physical ), long term stress, a family history of anxiety and or depression, and chemical imbalances in the brain.


Anxiety can be triggered by any physical pain in your body, stressful events ( school, moving, bullying etc), work stress issues, school anxiety and stress in school with peers or academics, illness and health issues, relationship issues with friends or family or others.

There are many evidence based techniques that are used in teen counseling and psychotherapy to help a teen manage his anxiety. One very powerful technique that has been around over 60 years is CBT Cognitive behavioral Therapy and it is very powerful. Teens can learn CBT and use CBT skill at home or wherever they are and this helps them gain strength in that they can control and manage their anxiety. I could go on about how great CBT therapy, however, I am going to give you a very brief synopsis for you. CBT looks at thoughts that are unhealthy, distorted , and not supported by facts. CBT then identifies feelings associated with these unhealthy thoughts. CBT then helps the client identify why these thought are distorted and allows the client to change the thought to a healthier more accurate thought. It is through theses exercises awe are able to see a huge reduction in anxiety and stress and well as other emotions the are not working for us at the time.

There is another exercise called VMBR that helps client’s bring in all senses: hearing , feeling, seeing, smell, and taste and allows the client to create a short video movie of themselves showing them confident, safe, tranquil and able to perform said task or overcome the anxiety that is getting in their way. It could be of taking a test at school or kicking a field goal, or going to school, or meeting a girlfriend, or a job interview.

Progressive Relaxation techniques tied in with diaphragmatic breathing techniques are an excellent evidence based skill that can be learned and used at home or out in the world. Research shows that when muscles are relaxed the body will follow and I believe everyone should use progressive relaxation for anxiety and stress management.

Mindfullness is an exercise that helps one learn to stay in the moment and not get caught up in the past or caught up in future thoughts. Mindfulness helps one notice thoughts like they are passing through like a cloud as well as feelings and does not allow the thought or feeling to rule ones day. Acceptance of self and learning self compassion and empathy as well as non criticisms or non judgment is important as well. Setting boundaries and effective communication skills is important to build healthier and more fulfilling relationships. Emotional regulation skills are helpful in managing ones anxiety before it builds and gets bigger for oneself. has been working with youth and families for over 18 years in Phoenix AZ and Valleywide. David Abrams MAPC, LPC has a great deal of experience working with anxiety issues. You can read more about him at and read testimonials as well.

College Anxiety Disorders Phoenix, Scottsdale Arizona

Saturday, September 19th, 2015

Approximately one in five university or college students has been diagnosed or treated with anxiety within the last twelve months. Many more are unaccounted for because they do not seek treatment or are improperly diagnosed, so the results could be even higher. Anxiety does not produce the same symptoms in all people. Some people actually experience anxiety attacks, including a feeling of panic, sweating, a rapid heart rate, and a sense of breathlessness. Many others may not have such overt symptoms. Many college students will likely to turn to behaviors that numb their thoughts — sexual activity, marijuana, weed, ganga, alcohol, drugs, sleeping all the time, or other habits which may affect their performance in school.

There’s an obvious stigma when it comes to men and mental health. In our culture expressing feelings is considered un-man like and “being a man” is connected  with being tough, it’s challenging for men to come forward and reveal they have a mental health condition like anxiety or depression and this is tragic.

There a number of anxiety reduction and management techniques that can be used for college students including: talk therapy and counseling, CBT skills, DBT skills, Exposure therapy, and more. Boys and men must be told it is ok to talk about their feelings: fears, anger, sadness and pain. This is the only way to begin the healing process.

Teens and Children

Many parents are beyond frustrated when their child refuses to go to school. Seeking help is important if this behavior of avoidance and defiance goes on for more than a day or so. One key for parents is not get into a power struggle or a negotiation with your child. A power struggle will only reinforce the undesired behaviors regarding school. Finding the heart of the issue is important. Is it academic struggles, is it bullying is it anxiety?

Anxiety in children in Arizona and the United States is one of the most common mental health disorders treated. However when children can not attend school, go to social activities, avoid interactions with people it now becomes an issue that needs to be addressed by a professional. Children may receive extra attention due to their fears from parents and this is due to the protective nature of parents,however, at some point it paralyzes the child and is not helpful anymore.

Parents that reassure their children when an anxious event arises may also be giving the message that their is real danger at school or at the grocery store and this reinforces avoidance behaviors from the child. Also allowing children to avoid events, school, “scary ” interactions will reinforce avoidance behaviors and this will not help your child’s anxiety it will get worse most likely.

Giving your children positive attention and rewards and praise when they do something brave can help your children tremendously. Praising your child, telling them you are proud of them , giving them a high five, smiling and more are huge behaviors parents can use to change anxious behaviors.

First give your child incentives for attending school. What will motivate your child? We all are motivated by something? It can be an activity with mom, it can be going for an ice cream, it can be extra time above and beyond regular bed time. It is always best to use rewards before moving into a consequence modality.

Let your child know that if he or she refuses to attend school they will not be able to : play video games, watch, Tv, watch netflix, and that they will have to sit at a desk and do homework. Also let them know if they stay home they will be given chores to do around the home. Obviously if your child is physically ill he would need to go see a Physician.

There a number of anxiety reduction and management techniques that can be used for your child including: talk therapy and counseling, CBT skills, DBT skills, Exposure therapy, play, and more. Lifeworks AZ has a lot of experience treating children with anxiety. Please see testimonials from parents at

Articles are not to be taken as a substitute for professional advice or counseling.