Archive for the 'Mental health' Category

Counseling Teen Mental Health Disorders Phoenix, Scottsdale Arizona

Monday, August 6th, 2018

I have been working with children and teens for over 18 years as well as families. There are many disorders that our society can label your child with including: ADD  Disorder, ADHD Disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Generalized anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, OCD obsessive Compulsive Disorder, PTSD Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Panic Disorder, Depression Disorder, Dysthmia Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, Adjustment Disorders, Non suicidal Self Injury Disorder.

My approach is a strength based approach. I believe it is vital to work with the parents and well as work individually w the child or teen to make desired change. The child’s most important person in their life is usually the parent and the parent is most involved and is the eyes and ears of hot is going on in your child’s life.

I do not label children and teens. In my opinion labeling a child can create a huge stigma of : disability, dysfunction, and disease. The reality is your child is  whole and may have areas that need improvement but he is not a label and he is much more than a diagnosis. Many youth will use their diagnosis as a reason not to excel or get better in life and this is why I have never labeled a child in almost 20 years of working with youth.

My approach is helping a child overcome issues, stress, challenges etc that are impacting him or her and the family. I believe we should focus on how we can : get homework done, How we can be respectful, how we can honor our Mom and dad, how we can exercise, How we can excel in school, how we can find a balance in our lives.  I believe it is important to look at a child’s sleep patters, eating habits, exercise, school, social patters, self esteem, and other habits and find a balance in your child’s life.

Many Child psychiatrists believe that children suffer from biological and genetic diseases that cause millions of youth to be mentally distressed and potentially violent. Many child psychiatrists reject that childhood trauma, poor parenting, neglect, and other social and environmental factors could lie at the root of the suffering displayed by 70 million youth in America.

One NIMH health expert stated that Columbine Type shootings and children with mental health issues are genetic. The expert did not state a word about: divorce, absentee parents, drug and alcohol abuse by parents, sexual abuse, trauma, broken love relationships, grief, loss, change,

There is inescapable evidence that trauma, abuse, neglect, loss of a relationship and more cause severe emotional disturbances that can last a lifetime, especially when inflicted on children and teens.

Millions of children are rejected from our military for taking mind altering medications : antidepressants, ADHD medications and more. Many parents are not informed of this information and seek a fix that does not look at the root of a child or teenagers pain.

Dr. Breggin a child psychiatrist states biopsychiatric treatments routinely given children do not really help them. The psychiatric drugs simply subdue children’s signs of suffering. Suppressing our children’s emotional signals with toxic agents not only harms them, it delays our recognition of the larger environmental stressors in the family, school, and community. When we treat children with drugs, we harm them as individuals by suppressing them and we harm the community by overlooking larger sources of the roots of the problems.

Creating relationships with all of our children is the key to not only preventing violence but also giving children happier lives. We need to be developing these relationships on a daily basis long before they start giving us signals of impending emotional imbalance and breakdowns.

adolescent counseling Phoenix, Scottsdale Arizona

Tuesday, August 22nd, 2017



Adolescent teens have pain and mental health issues and research shows that early intervention is important to manage mental health symptoms as well as create balance and success in your child or adolescents life.

Changing schools, divorce, family dynamics, grief and loss, academics , low self esteem, negative thoughts, poor sleep habits, lack of exercise, poor diet, poor family communication and more all feed mental health issues and must be addressed.


Life transitions, romantic boy friends and girlfriends, stress, grades, family issues, and exposure to drugs and alcohol are just a few of the challenges facing teens and young adults.

Keep the lines of communication open. If your child is away at college or has moved out, speak regularly by phone. Adolescents and children should know that they can talk to you about anything. Be committed to discussing tough topics. Talk about your own experiences and fears when you were an adolescent and child.

Look for mental health red flags: such as excessive sleeping, personality shifts, excessive moodiness, noticeable weight loss or gain, excessive secrecy or signs of self-harm. Isolating in bedroom, playing video games all day, suicidal thoughts, loneliness, crying a lot, irritable mood, stuffing emotions, lack of communication, drug and or alcohol use, grades are dropping, and more. These are just a few red flags that our child or teen needs professional help. A parent should take a child to an expert-professional that works with children, teens., and families for an assessment.

Parent’s can limit teens’ stress. Don’t encourage them to take on excessive time-consuming extra-curricular activities. Avoid comparing your children. Every child has his own strengths. Your child should not be watching TV or playing video games more than one hour per day.

Encourage your child to participate in daily activities that involve exercise: dance, basketball, weights, biking, hiking, walking. This is vital for stress management and mood regulation.

Role modeling healthy habits is important and vital. If you want your child to talk in a calm tone you must talk in a calm tone. If you want your child to not touch, push, or be aggressive with siblings you must parent in a gentle manner without physical aggression. If you want your child to get out of the house and exercise you must do so on a regular basis.  If your child iis eating unhealthy foods you must eliminate unhealthy foods from the home and cook healthier foods to assist your child.

Depression is a human response to pain in life. It is not a disability unless we stay stuck in it and can not pull ourselves out of the depression and it begins to impact our lives in a negative way. Depression will not sustain itself when one gets on the right path for life and sees the glass half full instead of half empty.

A loss of a dog or cat can cause many to feel a sense of depression. As life circumstances change so too will an individuals mood. While watching ASU Arizona State or any sports event one can cycle from euphoria to a sense of hopelessness and then continue to swing up and down many times during the game.

Depression many times is lifted by: making new friends, a new job, learning a new skill, travel, finding a passion, or through the passing of time.

Research shows that an individual whom is depressed many times is wrestling with guilt, and negative cognitions of blame. The best therapy is having good rapport with your therapist and someone who uses a variety of approaches. Many experts state that psychotherapy is the key to alleviating depression. A caring psychotherapeutic relationship is huge according data and research on depression.

Empathy is vital to heal from depression. Empathy a loving concern for others connects people. Some medications blunt empathy and make people feel indifferent. Research shows neurotransmitters that get invlolved in frontal lobe reactions are impacted and can rob us of self awareness, empathy, and sensitivity.

Love and instillation of hope I healing opportunity possible everyday) is crucial in the triumph over depression in children, teens, and adults.

Below are some symptoms you may observe in a depressed child however it is not limited to these alone:

Below is a list of SOME possible symptoms of child depression it is not inclusive just some things to look out for and to always seek professional advice on this matter.

One very common childhood depression symptom is an irritable mood.Children and adolescent teens who are irritable may be rude, disrespectful, and may refuse to do what you ask. They are less likely to follow the rules at school or at home and frequently talk back to parents and teachers. They are defiant at times as well.

A child who is bored may bother you, follow you around the house and demand that you entertain them. This may be because they are feeling down and blue.

They no longer like to do things they used to think were fun this is a red flag as well.

A child who is experiencing this childhood depression symptom will stop enjoying the activities they were the most interested in.

They may display changes in eating patterns or appetite. A child may eat more or eat less or very little as far as eating habits.

Children who experience this childhood depression symptom may seem particular or complain about their food. They may not want to get up or go to bed. The child may complain about the food when in the past they did not complain.

Children may sleep more or less than normal. Behaviorally this can translate into refusal to go to school or to go to bed. A change in sleep is a huge red flag. Sleep will impact mood in a very negative manner besides school performance and interpersonal communication and social interactions.

Depressed children and teenagers may complain of feeling tired and lack the energy to complete the tasks they need to do at home and school. This childhood depression symptom often causes children to behave in a way that can be misinterpreted as lazy. If parents or teachers describe a child as lazy I am immediately suspicious that the child is depressed. They have thoughts of worthlessness or guilty feelings. Low sense of self esteem is apparent and the child is not feeling good about his or her life at this time.

Children and adolescent teens who are depressed will often make negative self statements. Most parents often miss these statements or may be irritated by them. Younger children won’t attempt to complete tasks or activities because of fear that they are not good enough to do so. Kids with this childhood depression symptom may also blame themselves for things that they have nothing to do with.

Other symptoms include unpleasant behaviors such as tantrums, inability to handle frustration, complaining or crying. At school depressed children may be hostile or aggressive, display a drop in school performance, or may frequently go to the school nurse. Physical symptoms not wanting to go to school, suicidal thoughts, homicidal thoughts, cutting, self harm are other red flags stating your child needs professional assistance.

There are many factors that can contribute to anxiety or anxiety disorders: obsessive compulsive disorders, Panic disorders, social anxiety, Phobias, general anxiety, Panic attacks, PTSD Post traumatic stress disorders and more.

It is important to look at many elements in an individuals life: medications, factors during inception and birth, environmental factors, Drugs, marijuana, alcohol, Stressors, Trauma from the past ( emotional, physical, mental), sleep, diet, daily habits, negative cognitions daily, genetics in the family from Mom and Dad as well as other family members and their traumas as well.


Many practitioners give meds without addressing the root causes of the anxiety. It is important to look at all the above and more in order to create the best plan to reduce anxiety. I have worked with anxiety disorders for over 15 years and have seen a combination of many elements that exacerbate anxiety disorders. It is vital to look at all the above areas in order to really manage your child’s anxiety or your anxiety as best as possible. Not looking at sleep for example and treating the disorder without a change in sleep will most likely not be very successful since sleep is an important element in mood disorders.

Brain experts believe a diet that is heavy in inflammation food consumption and low in healthy fats affects the risk of obtaining anxiety or anxiety disorders. Anxiety is extremely high in those with high sensitivity to gluten.

Medication is used to treat ADHD , however, research shows that it also leads to anxiety disorders, as well as other symptoms including but not limited to addiction.

There are many tools an anxiety client can learn in order to manage an anxiety disorder be it panic attacks, phobias, generalized anxiety, PTSD, etc.

Some of the research based tools in counseling psychology to manage anxiety are: EMDR, DBT, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Progressive Relaxation, VMBR, Exposure therapy, and mindfulness.

Child anxiety is stressful and painful for families. Activities that once were enjoyable are avoided and parents hear complaints of stomach problems, and various aches and pains, headaches and more. Learning ways to cope with anxiety is important. It is a fine balancing act however avoiding school and avoiding sleeping alone and avoiding new things is not creating a balance for your child or teenager. Forcing a child may be overwhelming and can be a failed approach as well. It is important that parents understand that anxiety can be debilitating and your child may no be manipulating and may not be lazy.

Many children that have behavioral issues like oppositional defiance or conduct disorders also have underlying anxiety that they do not know how to handle or identify. Learning skills to manage anxiety is vital to you child’s success socially as well as academically and behaviorally and emotionally. Most children can not articulate what is going on inside their bodies and minds. They must learn skills and tools to address their anxiety.

Some children can manifest itself in different ways. One way might be to avoid situations that are uncomfortable. Another way might be to escape the situation and this can be seen or perceived as oppositional or defiant when it is really fear based. Behavioral dysregulation is common with children and teens that have anxiety disorders: panic attacks, phobia, social anxiety, PTSD, Post traumatic stress disorder, generalized anxiety disorders , obsessive compulsive disorder and other anxiety disorders.

Children that display temper tantrums, behavioral problems at school, throw things at school, throw themselves down and cry and have full blown outburst may have a profound anxiety disorder however this needs to be assessed by a professional. Anxiety disorders need to be assessed and treated by a professional in mental health care.

Academic pressure and demands in the classroom can trigger anxiety and this will look like disruptive behaviors. The child may feel overwhelmed and anxious and not be able to cope with the teachers request or the assignment. The child might be intelligent however he or she may have a learning challenge or trouble with the task and feel overwhelmed hence unable to do the task and act out behaviorally.

Most teachers are not trained in identifying anxiety disorders and a child or teenager typically will end up in suspension or in the Principals office being punished. This does not address the underlying issue that may be an anxiety disorder.

A child that is diagnosed with ADHD may have an anxiety disorder instead that looks like: impulsivity, hyperactivity, and inattention however this needs to be evaluated by a professional. A lot of times individuals jump to ADHD diagnosis when really the child or teen is suffering with an anxiety disorder. An anxiety disorder may be primary and for example ADHD is secondary or it may be the other way around. There are a number of other diagnosis as well that may be co-occuring with a child or teens anxiety.

It is important to find a professional that has daily experience working with children and teens . Children and teens can learn tools and skills to manage and cope with anxiety and other disorders. Parents can learn skills as well to help create success and balance in your child’s life. David Abrams MAPC, LPC, CAGS has over 15 years experience working with families and youth treating anxiety disorders. has testimonials and more information.





Teaching children and teens life coping skills, social skills, mood regulation skills, problem solving and more is vital so your child can be successful and healthy for life. has been working with youth and families in mental health for over 15 years.


teen counseling: academics, behavior, emotional Phoenix Scottsdale Arizona

Friday, March 10th, 2017

We know that children and adolescents do not have the part of their brain developed that are responsible for healthy life choices. Teenagers are full of poor judgment and if you look back at your teenage years you can find times you made poor choices most likely as well as unhealthy choices. Take this and combine it with hormones that are pervasive as well as physical body changes and this is a recipe for big challenges in youth. This is a highly volatile combination for teenagers world wide. Mental health disorders pop up during these years.

Communication is changing in our society. In the past we spoke to someone on a phone or in person. Now we “ speak” through SIRI, texting, instagram, snapchat, facebook, via ps4, xbox, etc.

Teens are impulsive and may send and inappropriate text or photo that initially is believed to be between friends and as you know now can be shared not just with school peers but posted on line for the world to see . This can have a devastating effect on a teens mental health in a very negative way.

Many children and teens feel betrayed by friends they communicate with in this digital error and often find themselves feeling shamed and embarrassed when private texts become public or private photos become public. Many teens become depressed due to cyberbullying or feeling rejected by peers. Social isolation is a big issue for children and teenagers that impact their emotional well being and physical health.

The Rate of depression in the United States of America increased in children and teens twelve year and older from six percent to seven percent over an eight year period. It was last reported in 2013 in this study.

Research in a California study states that there were warning signs in all the cases of suicide among youth that suicide in Santa Clara County in a 200 page report. There was evidence of a history of mental health struggles and precipitating circumstances for those that suicide.

Prevention efforts would include interventions, such as the combined use of psychopharmacology and psychotherapy, such as cognitive behavior therapy, and early detection and identification of youth with symptoms of schizophrenia and other severe mental illness.

Early detection , counseling and prevention show they reduce depressive symptoms in children and teenagers.

If your child is out of balance as far as : grades, homework, mood, electronic use, not spending time with family, isolation, anger, lack of friends,depressed mood, negative thinking, changes in behavior, hopelessness, suicidal thoughts, self harm, changes in appetite, changes in things they once enjoyed, change in grades,  these are just a few red flags . that your child needs professional help from someone in child-teen mental health. specializes in child and teen mental health  as well as family mental health. You can reach David Abrams MAPC, LPC at his website and email him or call him re: your child or teenager. He has expertise in a wide array of areas.

College Depression from COVID 19; Counseling to help with Isolation from Peers feeding Depression. Learn Therapy skills to elevate mood at Lifeworks Az Counseling and Therapy.

Tuesday, October 11th, 2016

There has been a huge increase in college mental health issues over the past 20 years. Many students are suffering from high levels of stress and anxiety. Some reported anxiety issues are: panic attacks, phobia, general anxiety , anxiety related to exams, anxiety related to work, anxiety related to peers, anxiety related to relationships, social anxiety, ptsd,  and performance anxiety. Many young college students are taking classes however they really do not know what they want to do upon graduation and picking a career path that one will enjoy can be a daunting task. Many college students do not have experience in the work world and classes do a very poor job of showing the college student what it will look like daily once they graduate. One may enjoy a class for example a criminal justice class however working as a traffic police officer is a lot different than receiving a major in criminal justice studies. One activity that will help a college student is an internship in the field they want to work or a summer job in the area they want to explore. Most students do not do so and end up changing majors and careers many times on average. Almost 20 percent of college students surveyed out of approx.: 100,000 college students and a bout of anxiety be it test anxiety or more. Colleges have very few staff members to support the students. Some universities have 60,000- 90,000 students and only 30-50 people in total to support mental health services. Many colleges and universities have short term programs( a few sessions and then they refer clients out or a workshop that is positive)

College and University students have reported feeling depressed and almost 15 % of college students were diagnosed with depression in the last few years on average. Treating depression can take more than a few counseling sessions. There are a number of ways to treat and manage stress, anxiety and depression.

My approach to help my client’s is a unique personal approach. Each client brings there own unique personality, perceptions, motivation , and goals. I am a strength based practitioner being that I focus on my client’s positive strengths and use their talents to spring board them to desired change through empathy and building rapport. Developing a comfortable relationship with my clients and making them feel safe and feel supported his vital.

I spend  a lot of time finding out about my client’s. Learning about them from birth till present. I explore all aspects of my client’s lives . Finding out what is working in their lives and what is not working. Exploring areas they are excited about and areas that do not interest them . I want to know about there : friends, family, hobbies, sleep habits, exercise habits, daily habits, dietary habits, academics, work and much more. Learning about the above is essential in creating new balance and empowering students to learn ways to manage there mood, stress, and anxiety.

Beyond talk therapy I teach my client’s specific tools they can use to manage stress, anxiety,depressed mood, anger, relationships, academics and more. There are many research based counseling therapies that I teach: CBT, EMDR, DBT , VMBR, Progressive Relaxation, Mindfulness and more. If you would like more info please email me from my web site: and I can answer any questions you might need answered.

College counseling depression Phoenix, Scottsdale Arizona

Thursday, September 10th, 2015

Many seniors in High School are excited that they will be graduating, however, with graduating comes many other stressors for teenagers. Teens are applying to a variety of Colleges, taking SAT and ACT college entrance exams, thinking about college or another path like the military etc. Teens are still working hard on their current academics, balancing friends, family, sports, and other activities.

The transition to college can be overwhelming for adolescents. A new environment is a huge stressor. New roommates and new peers socially is a huge component for teenagers transitioning to college.

College academics are a huge stress related challenge for teen students. Students have new Professors and new subjects and the academic demands increase as far as studies and as far as the challenging information students need to absorb. Managing increased study time and knowing that parents are not around to enforce rules and limits as far as sleep, studies, etc is a huge challenge for most teenagers in college. Managing social activities and work with studies is a huge challenge for most college students.

Many teens struggle with finding a major or a path of study that they enjoy and that they can see themselves using in their careers.

College students have many adjustments and stressors while living away from home. Managing money and being self sufficient as far as meals and obtaining needed daily life supplies is a new concept for most teenagers.

College students struggle with balancing: sleep, social, healthy diet, exercising, and academics. Many feel depressed or sad, lack interest in activities, feel lost, suffer from poor concentration, and use substances to address their stressors.

Depressed moods need to be addressed. Research shows their is a genetic component to depression and the longer it goes un treat the worse the depression may become. Studies show that stress and trauma make teens more susceptible to depression, substance abuse, and other mental health disorders. It need not be a major trauma; stress at home from divorce, emotional abuse, bullying, grief or loss can create pathways for mental health disorders such as: anxiety, depression and Substance abuse. Neurological factors such as low levels of neurotransmitters impact emotional stability can lead to mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety disorders, and substance abuse or dependence.

The good news is their are many evidence based researched counseling therapies that can address the above mentioned issues as well as other treatments.

Child mental Health Counseling Therapy Phoenix Scottsdale

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

Over half or all teens in Arizona and Nation wide  do not receive help for their mental health conditions. Extensive research by mental health professionals state we are not taking mental health issues as seriously as we should. Many teens that are suffering from social anxiety and phobias do not get help. Many claim to enjoy staying at home: watching TV, playing media games, Video games, you tube,Instagram, Facebook, Minecraft, Call of duty( violent!), Grand theft auto ( violent), and other I phone games however really would like to meet new friends and have a real social network not a computer based friendship online with people they never physically see in person.

Many children and teens are suffering from depression. Children and teens do get depressed and do not always express their thoughts and feelings to : mom and Dad or peers. Spending one on one time alone and the key is alone with your child will allow you to listen to him. EX. Tell me about your feelings? Tell me about your thoughts? Tell em about your Day? Tell me about your thoughts related to school? Family? Teachers? Peers? Not having peers?

Many parents state their teen or child does not want to be with them in public etc…w.ell research shows the opposite. Create an opportunity…an activity…grabbing a Frappaccino a burger a treat and spend fifteen minutes with each child. If you sit and listen eventually your child will open it…. Yes you might have to do it every Sat at 11 am however this regularity will create an open safe environment for your child to tell you his thoughts, feelings and concerns.

Many children and teens do not feel loved and feel that if they are not performing at a high level or at school they are not good lovable or valuable. It is very important to let your children know they have intrinsic qualities that are wonderful and that they can always improve in school or sports but they are much more than the grade alone or the reward or certificate they obtain.

I have worked with thousands of youth who state they feel: bad, defective,unloved,not valuable, not important, unattractive, have no positive traits, have no future, are worthless, inadequate and much more…They tend to focus on these negative qualities even though they have so many positive attributes.

There are many treatment therapies to address: mood, anxiety, depression, cutting. Some well know treatments are DBT and CBT ,however, developing a rapport and strong relationship with a child is key to facilitating change.

Teen Counseling Mental Health Phoenix

Friday, January 16th, 2015

As well, studies of video game repetitive play daily have shown their brains develop differently: more than one hour a day of gaming appears to enlarge areas responsible for memory and visual-spacial skills, but diminish areas of the brain responsible for speech, memory, emotions, and areas responsible for inhibiting impulsive behavior. Do you really want your child thinking about killing people for one hour? Two Hours? Eight hours per day? There are many other activities that can be substituted for gaming.

Chronic stress is also proving to permanently alter brain development, increasing the size of the amygdala, which governs emotions, and reducing the size of the hippocampus. The end result may be a brain that is wired for anxiety, depression and learning disabilities.

Alcohol, for instance, can affect the developing teen brain in myriad negative ways: causing potentially permanent damage to the hippocampus, which helps the brain form long-term memories, a critical aspect of learning. American researchers have also found that teens who started drinking before the age of 12 were five times more likely to become alcoholics later in life than those who held off until age 25.

Recent studies have linked smoking in teens to alcohol abuse, which itself has a devastating effect on both memory and intelligence. And it turns out smoking pot may be far worse for the teen brain than previously thought. Recent studies have linked regular marijuana use in adolescence to smaller brain volume and more damage to white matter. Smoking daily before the age of 17 has been shown to reduce verbal IQ and increase the risk of depression. This can be a particular problem for teens with ADHD, who researchers have found are far more likely to abuse both cigarettes and marijuana than other teenagers.

Substance abuse can interfere with brain development in ways that can make teens more vulnerable to mental illness or even lower their IQ. Researchers have shown that students with higher levels of cotinine, a byproduct of nicotine, in their bodies perform worse on cognitive tests. Smoking also seems to be related to less-active prefrontal cortexes in teens and appears to damage parts of the brain that produce serotonin, and lower levels of seratonin are linked to depression.

Many scientists believe teens don’t act out because they have immature brains struggling to navigate an adult world, but because they have adult brains railing against a society that treats them like children.

Here are tips to work with your defiant teen or child.

  • Your child feels misunderstood.
  • Your child is emotionally immature . The child lacks skills to manage feelings and solve problems effectively .
  • Your child wants to hear you understand him even though he can not verbalize this information .
  • Yelling will increase defiance .
  • It is important to understand why you Yell so you can reduce this behavior.
  • Do not try to win in arguments you are simply fueling more defiance .
  • Break free of thoughts that keep you arguing with your child.
  • Present yourself as calm yet firm .
  • Praise and recognize positive behavior changes .
  • Encourage your child’s efforts .
  • Reinforce your positive parenting efforts .
  • Develop relationship beyond chores and school .

Cyber Bullying: Children, Teens, and adults and mental health

Monday, August 25th, 2014

Nearly 43% of kids have been bullied online. 1 in 4 has had it happen more than once.
Over 70% of students report seeing frequent bullying online.  Over 80% of teens use a cell phone regularly, making it the most common medium for cyber bullying.Over 68% of teens agree that cyber bullying is a serious problem.
Approximately 85% of young people think bullying online is easier to get away with than bullying in person.

Below  is an article from CNN on Cyber Bullying online…

(CNN) — If you’ve ever complained that the trolls junking up online comment sections are a bunch of sadistic psychopaths, you might be onto something.
An online survey by a group of Canadian researchers suggests that Internet trolls are more likely than others to show signs of sadism, psychopathy and “Machiavellianism”: a disregard for morality and tendency to manipulate or exploit others.
“It was sadism, however, that had the most robust associations with trolling of any of the personality measures,” says an article by psychologists from the University of Manitoba, University of Winnipeg and University of British Columbia. “In fact, the associations between sadism and … scores were so strong that it might be said that online trolls are prototypical everyday sadists.”
Sadism is a tendency to take pleasure in other people’s pain or discomfort.
The article was published last week in the journal Personality and Individual Differences.
As defined in the article, online trolling is “the practice of behaving in a deceptive, destructive, or disruptive manner in a social setting on the Internet with no apparent instrumental purpose.”
So, as opposed to cyberbullying, saying nasty things during an argument over politics or even making hateful comments that reflect the commenter’s true feelings, trolls are offensive for the sheer enjoyment of it. Or, in Internet parlance, “for the lulz.”
“Trolls operate as agents of chaos on the Internet, exploiting ‘hot-button issues’ to make users appear overly emotional or foolish in some manner,” the article reads. “If an unfortunate person falls into their trap, trolling intensifies for further, merciless amusement. This is why novice Internet users are routinely admonished, ‘Do not feed the trolls!’.”
Survey respondents were asked about their Internet behavior, including how much time they spend online and whether they comment in places like YouTube or on news websites. They also were given tests that measured responses against psychology’s ominously named “Dark Tetrad”: narcissism, Machiavellianism, psychopathy and sadistic personality.
Commenters who said they enjoy trolling other users more than other options (which included debating topics and making new friends) consistently scored higher on the “tetrad” and displayed a tendency to enjoy trolling because it is pleasurable, the authors wrote.
The questions asked to determine sadistic tendencies included ”I enjoy physically hurting people,” “I enjoy making jokes at the expense of others” and “I enjoy playing the villain in games and torturing other characters.”
To be clear, the article is not based on a random sampling of respondents.
For their final study, researchers gave their questionnaire to 188 Canadian psychology students who got extra course credit for completing the surveys and 609 United States residents who use a website that lets people fill out surveys for a small amount of money. Those respondents were paid 50 cents for filling out the questionnaire.
But it speaks to a growing concern about behavior that has existed, certainly, since the dawn of the Internet and in other forms for much, much longer.
Sites like YouTube and the Huffington Post have banned anonymous comments, requiring users to create an account that identifies them by name, while others have taken different tacks to try to moderate comment sections.
“These findings provide a preliminary glimpse into the mechanism by which sadism fosters trolling behavior,” the article says. “Both trolls and sadists feel sadistic glee at the distress of others. Sadists just want to have fun … and the Internet is their playground.”

Mental Health Depression Anxiety and Medical Health linked Phoenix, Scottsdale, Cave Creek, Arizona

Saturday, September 28th, 2013

Mental Health disorders and medical health are often linked together. Patients with diabetes and heart disease have twice the rate of anxiety as well as twice the rate of depression. This in turn makes it difficult to lose weight and make other healthful life changes. One in twenty five patients that go to their PCP doctor have a diagnosis of mental health. The most common mental health diagnosis at the physicians office is : depression, anxiety, and substance abuse according to JAMA.

Many Primary care practitioners refer patients to a mental health practitioner however ,only 4  out of ten follow through in contacting the specialist in counseling and therapy for mental health. So sixty percent of mental health referrals do not ever seek treatment. Many will take medication however that is not counseling.

Mental Health Important to Overall Health( From US MEDICINE 2009, April issue Below)

Mental illnesses have a major impact on overall health. A 2006 study found that people with severe mental illnesses die, on average, 25 years earlier than the general population. “They are not dying of their mental health disorders and they are not dying of their addiction disorders, but they are dying of other kinds of chronic diseases. The early mortality is really linked to a lack of focus or negligence of their physical health disorders.” Dr. Huang said.

The role that mental health plays in causing poorer outcomes with co-existing conditions should be considered by the medical establishment. Dr. Huang pointed to one study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology on women with cardiovascular disease that found that depression was associated with 15 percent to 53 percent increases in 5-year cardiovascular expenditures compared to nondepressed women with cardiovascular disease. The study concluded that these results “reinforce the importance of assessing depression in clinical populations and support the hypothesis that improved management of depression in women with suspected myocardial ischemia could reduce medical costs.”

Integrating Mental Heath and Substance Abuse into Primary Care

Dr. Huang said that one of the problems when it comes to drug and mental health disorders is that while there is treatment available, many people do not seek it.

In a 2007 SAMHSA study, 24.3 million adults age 18 or older experienced serious psychological distress but only about 44.6 percent of these received mental health services. Among adolescents who needed treatment for alcohol use, the percentage who received treatment at a specialty facility fluctuated between 5.9 and 8.1 percent from 2002 through 2007, according to SAMHSA.

“One of the reasons I am doing detail at CDC from SAMHSA is when we look at this treatment gap that has persisted over the years, we don’t seem to be closing the treatment gap. We thought, ‘okay we need to figure out how to move more upstream. How do we get more into the prevention arena for mental health and addiction disorders?’We know that they are preventable and treatable,” Dr. Huang said.

Because substance abuse disorders and mental health have an impact on the trajectory of other chronic health illnesses, one question is whether a substance abuse assessment should a part of a primary care assessment.

“When we think about when people go for primary care, is assessment of substance abuse a part of that examination? Should it be a part of that when we know there is a high rate of prevalence of these disorders and a high rate of co-occurrence and that they actually interfere with the positive outcomes for those other disorders?” Dr. Huang said.

Dr. Huang said that federal offi cials are looking more at the importance of incorporating mental health and drug addiction services in primary care settings, and vice versa, as a way of making sure that people receive treatment.

“How do you take care of both the physical and behavioral aspects? We are looking at this conceptual framework for not just putting behavioral health care or mental health and addictions in to primary care, but also when would it is necessary to put physical and primary care health services into, say, community mental health services? That hasn’t been done traditionally. We have seen more of the other way, where we see more into primary care and actually we are really two separate healthcare delivery systems,” Dr. Huang said.

Dr. Perou said that it is important to think about how primary care and public health approaches can be linked with mental health and substance abuse help.

“We need to have a much more comprehensive system of care and we have that opportunity now with health care reform. Mental health is essential to overall health. We need to keep saying that message and making sure that everybody knows that,” she concluded.

Almost 70 percent of visits to a medical doctor are due to stress related symptoms. end( US Medicine, April, 2009)

Research shows that counseling and therapy are vital in conjunction with taking prescription medications for best outcomes and results. Lifeworks AZ in Phoenix,AZ work with client’s so they can empower themselves and reach life goals.

Child anxiety, depression: counseling children from scottsdale, tempe,

Monday, August 26th, 2013

There are many things parents can do to help build balance in their
children’s lives. Building strong relationships that are built on:
safety, security, stability, and creating healthy relationships among
peers, friends, classmates, and family is vital.

Children can learn skills to cope with adversity and challenges in life.
Life is full of challenging and stressful situations: changing schools,
stressors, divorce, moving, bullying, self esteem issues, academic
challenges, learning disabilities and more. Helping your child cope with
pain. loss, challenges, and stress will create one solid foundation for
future success.

Creating a positive and safe environment at home and at school. Checking
in with your child as well as his/her teachers to make sure your child
is not being mistreated, bullied, and is in a positive supportive and
safe environment at school is important.

Children can learn ways to manage their mood and anger. Children can
also learn ways to manage stress. Building healthy social skills,
solving skills, and communication skills is very important for success
and balance.

Positive feedback is important for children. Children need positive
affirmations and validation from parents and need an opportunity to
Unconditional love and affection are important . Affirming your children
for: altruism , empathy, sharing, teamwork, hard work, effort, and being
is important for a child’s well being.

Positive social behaviors help children build a solid sense of self and
self esteem that is healthy. Feeling connected, accepted, and liked by
peers is important
for a child’s development.

Adequate sleep, nutrition, and exercise is important to manage emotions:
anger, depression, anxiety, grief, loss and more. Lifeworks AZ uses a
strength based approach without labeling a child. Labeling can often
create a sense that the child is damaged and LifeworksAZ does not
believe in labeling
any children. Working to create health, happiness, and success is the
philosophy at Lifeworks AZ.

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