Archive for the 'Teen Depression' Category

Child Therapy counseling Depression Phoenix, Scottsdale, Peoria Arizona

Sunday, December 25th, 2016

Children between the ages 0f ten and fourteen have a higher rate of suicide than those killed in vehicle accidents over the past few years. Major depressive disorders are on the rise among children and adolescents. Some believe it has to do with cyber bullying and media and more smartphone use. Depression among children and teens is real and must be addressed and the sooner the better. A teen, child, and family mental health professional can address counseling needs and has experience in this field.

Depression is on the rise in children, teens and adults in America. Depression is becoming very common at schools and at home. A huge rise in depression has been seen in girls in the past 10 years.

Research has shown an increase in depressive disorders over ten percent in the past year in the United States of America an in Arizona. Approximately 200,000 adolescent teens were used for this study.

The rise in depression and suicide is of all cultures and this study highlighted white girls in America.

Adolescent girls have been exposed to an increase in cyberbullying via social media: snapchat, instagram, facebook, texting and much more. There is an increase in smartphone use on a variety of texting applications above and beyond the phones texting and this has been attributed to a decrease in moods among girls.

There are many factors that can contribute to a teens depression. Thoughts about ones future, thoughts regarding college or a job or career. Thoughts about being accepted by peers and friendships. Relationships with family and significant others. Negative thoughts impacting academics, negative thoughts impacting self and self esteem. Negative thoughts about ones ability academically and socially and many more areas can be impacting your child’s mood and depression.

Depression is a huge growing challenge and deadly disorder that must be addressed among adolescent teens in America and Arizona.

Many teen adolescents are keeping their thoughts and depressed moods to themselves. Stuffing an adolescents emotions is the worst possible action when dealing with depression.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death among adolescent teenagers in the USA.

In a study at Oxford University that studied over fifteen anti depressants taken by over five thousand adolescent teenagers they found that they did not find significant change in their major depression levels for most of the 5000 children studies. The only drug that showed more improvement than a placebo in teenagers was Prozac. Most experts state counseling and psychotherapy is needed to create change even if a child is taking an anti depressant medication.

Swedish researchers report in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent medicine that dancing improves the mental and physical health of teen girls.

The girls participated two times a week in a dance class compared to girls that did not participate on a dance class. A significant difference of better health was reported by the girls involved in dancing .

Exercise can help in averting depression. Physical activity at least 4 times a week is a great way to manage stress and mood.

Teen girls are bombarded with swim suit models and have challenges finding role models that are not: thin, on tv, on the cover of a magazine etc.

Societies pressure for girls to have the top grades, pressure to join sports teams, pressure to excel and a focus on a performance and overvalue achievements only creates huge teen stress for girls.

The objectification of young females is a pressure cooker if teens have to look like a 20 year old model ( makeup, clothing, accessories, hair etc). The media message to look like a super model is a daily message that bombards women and girls and is not the best way to increase self esteem or create balance in a young girls mind.

Helping children and teens increase self esteem, empower themselves , and motivate them, as well as manage their mood are all possible through counseling. Giving parents tips and tools for strategies they have not used are vital for family dynamics and improving family communication.

Lifeworksaz.com works with children and adolescent teens with depression and anxiety and a variety of mental health issues  as well as families to create balance and learn ways to manage stress and life’s challenges.. Creating balance and success.

Counseling Teen depression , Smart phone, Phoenix, Scottsdale

Tuesday, July 5th, 2016

A teen from MA. sent her boyfriend text messages when he was in a state of depression urging him to kill himself. She is standing trial for Manslaughter. The Grand Jury stated that her texts coerced him into committing the act of suicide and it was a direct and casual link to him killing himself. The teen urged her boyfriend to kill himself and put him down when he stated he was having doubts of killing himself.

Depression is common among teenagers and should be addressed right away through professional services.

The development of the teen brain continues and when the brain is still developing it will be adversely impacted by drug and substance use. The chances of future mental health disorders increases greatly when a teen is using drugs or alcohol.

Stress and trauma from birth on can make many children and teenagers prone to mental health disorders including and not limited to: depression, anxiety, substance abuse and much more. Stress from family fighting and emotional pain can impact mental health disorders. Divorce, separations, verbal abuse, emotional abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, divorce, changing schools, bullying, poor family relationships, grief and loss of family members, and more can impact mood and make teens and children more susceptible toward mental health disorders: eating disorders, Phobias, Mood disorders, substance dependence and more.

Neurological factors and low levels of neurotransmitters can affect emotional balance and stability. This makes mental health  disorders more common.

Sleep disorders and poor sleep have shown a huge connection with depression and mood disorders and teenagers. Simply not getting adequate sleep can have a huge impact on a teens mental health.

Eating health and balanced diets are important for teens and adults for mood balance. Most teens skip breakfast and this impacts mood and concentration in a negative manner.

Some Red Flags that your child or teen is suffering from depression : suicidal thoughts, risky behaviors, impulsivity, sadness, hopelessness, anger, irritability, tearfulness, frequent crying, withdrawal from friends, withdrawal from family, loss of interest in activities, changes in eating habits, changes in sleeping habits, restlessness, agitation, feelings of worthlessness, sensitivity to criticism ,hopelessness, fatigue and low energy, lack of motivation , difficulty concentrating. If your teen has these symptoms one should go to a metal health professional. A depressed mood, lack of interest in activities, feelings of worthlessness, poor concentration, and thoughts of death are to be taken seriously.The length and severity of theses symptoms are important.

Many teens are stressed about: peers and social groups, relationships, family issues and relationships, academics, their future and future path in life and direction.

If their is an emergency you should call 911 or bring your child to emergency. If not professional mental health experts can work with you and your youth to help Counseling.

Counseling Teen Depression Phoenix, Scottsdale, Chandler Arizona

Friday, April 8th, 2016

Most children and teens go un treated for mental health disorders and specifically depression . Our society seems to believe only adults can be depressed however we know from research that is not the case. Many adolescent teenagers are suffering from depression and they must rely on their parents to bring them in for professional mental health counseling. Parents must legally consent to counseling treatment so youth hands are tied if they are under 18 years old.

There are many elements that can contribute to depression. This list is not extensive however it shows that many areas can be working toward depression. One element is heredity . The biological DNA of parents, grandparents, and family tree suggest from research that genetic cellular makeup may pre -dispose your teen or child to mental health disorders and substance abuse.

The development of the teen brain continues and when the brain is still developing it will be adversely impacted by drug and substance use. The chances of future mental health disorders increases greatly when a teen is using drugs or alcohol.

Stress and trauma from birth on can make many children and teenagers prone to mental health disorders including and not limited to: depression, anxiety, substance abuse and much more. Stress from family fighting and emotional pain can impact mental health disorders. Divorce, separations,verbal abuse, emotional abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, divorce, changing schools, bullying, poor family relationships, grief and loss of family members, and more can impact mood and make teens and children more susceptible toward mental health disorders: eating disorders, Phobias, Mood disorders, substance dependence and more.

Neurological factors and low levels of neurotransmitters can affect emotional balance and stability. This makes mental health  disorders more common.

Sleep disorders and poor sleep have shown a huge connection with depression nd mood disorders and teenagers. Simply not getting adequate sleep can have a huge impact on a teens mental health.

Eating health and balanced diets are important for teens and adults for mood balance. Most teens skip breakfast and this impacts mood and concentration in a negative manner.

Some Red Flags that your child or teen is suffering from depression : suicidal thoughts, risky behaviors, impulsivity, sadness, hopelessness, anger, irritability, tearfulness, frequent crying, withdrawal from friends, withdrawal from family, loss of interest in activities, changes in eating habits, changes in sleeping habits, restlessness, agitation, feelings of worthlessness, sensitivity to criticism ,hopelessness, fatigue and low energy, lack of motivation , difficulty concentrating. If your teen has these symptoms one should go to a metal health professional. A depressed mood, lack of interest in activities, feelings of worthlessness, poor concentration, and thoughts of death are to be taken seriously.The length and severity of theses symptoms are important.

Many teens are stressed about: peers and social groups, relationships, family issues and relationships, academics, their future and future path in life and direction.

If their is an emergency you should call 911 or bring your child to emergency. If not professional mental health experts can work with you and your youth to help through : family counseling, child or teen psychotherapy, and a combined approach that teachers your child skills to manage life and find happiness and success I all areas of his or her life.

Depression has its roots in a variety of components. It is important to address many areas when looking at depression. Some areas are : nutrition, sleep, diet, exercise, interpersonal skills, social, skills, Cognitive thoughts, feelings with peers, feelings and thoughts about self, peers, and family, family interactions and more. Self esteem is a huge component as well.

Diet can bring changes in brain chemistry that alert hormones that control mood. Research shows specific foods and diets impact mood. Alcohol will increase anxiety and depression where as a banana will elevate children and Teens moods.  A diet filled with : fruit, vegetables, fish, beans, nuts and olive oil will elevate mood and help with a depressed mood.

Most teens and children skip breakfast meals and this lowers your child’s blood sugar level and releases hormones like adrenaline. Adrenaline frees glucose  from the muscles and from the liver but will also make your child stressed, depressed, and anxious. Research showing a change of diet similar to the above mentioned changed mental health for the better in over 90 percent in a large research study in 2015. Brain pathways are linked to eating and hunger.

Drinking water will impact your mood. It is important to stay extremely hydrated especially living in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Arizona. Children should at a minimum drink half their body weight daily and in the summer and hotter weather double that amount and drink more fluids. Soda, coffee, tea, sugary drinks, and energy drinks do not count.

Eating smaller regular meals is much better for depression and mood management than eating a large meal and going extended times without food. Your teen can snack on raw almonds throughout the day for mood management and it does not have to be refrigerated.

Reduce high fat foods, processed moods and sugary foods these foods cause a 65% chance your child will be more depressed than avoiding these foods. Avocado, nuts, and fish are healthy fats your brain needs for a healthy mood.

Exercising 5 times a week for an hour has shown to be as effective regulating mild to moderate depression as taking the anti depressant prozac in studies. Exercise releases mood boosting endorphins in your brain.

A balanced diet rich in : Spinach, sweet Potatoes, Salmon, Oily fish, Brazilian Nuts, avocados,eggs,bananas, and yogurt will help regulate with mood regulation and help w depressed moods.

Diet is one piece in mood regulation and managing depression. Exercise, healthy thoughts, diet, sleep, healthy daily habits and creating a healthy balance in all your child does will facilitate optimal mood and mental health.  Limiting tv and video games as well as electronic use will help your child or teen with sleep which also is directly connected with depressed mood anxiety and depression.

Thirty two million people suffer from Major depression in the United States of America. A large recent research study shows that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can be as effective as using a second generation anti-depressant to treat the depression. The study focused on three anti depressants that are used frequently to treat depression. The three anti depressants were: Wellbutrin, Lexapro, and Prozac. The journal states that both options should be provided for treatment for the almost 20 Percent of people that suffer from depression.

CBT Cognitive Behavioral Therapy empowers your child to manage his mood, thoughts, and behaviors. A medication will not change your child’s negative or rational or unhealthy thinking. This therapy in conjunction with healthy life choices, boundaries, building self esteem, social skills, and learning to be successful is vital for a child’s life long journey.

There is as much evidence for cognitive behavioural therapy as there is for medications to treat mild and moderate depression, as well as evidence that they have a synergistic effect,” says Dr. Gratzer. “In other words, for the hundreds of thousands of Canadians struggling with depression, Internet-assisted cognitive behavioural therapy offers a cost-effective and empowering way of accessing an important treatment.”

One of the most common types of mental health disorders that children, teens, and women experience is depression. We all have times when we feel: down, low, unmotivated and lack energy however when symptoms occur for over two weeks it may be sign of a depressive disorder, grief and loss and more.

Major depression occurs twice as frequently in women as major depression occurs in men. Depression is a persistant state that will negatively affect ones physical well being and health as well as how one performs, behaves, and ones mood.

Depression is one of the most common mental health disorders in society however it is not diagnosed due to a number of reasons and it needs to be looked at by a professional in order to help alleviate symptoms that impact ones life.

Many things contribute to depression: grief and loss, loss of friends, changes in relationships, new schools, new life transitions, negative thinking, financial stress, family stress, abuse, genetics, biological predispositions, environmental factors and much much more.

Treatment for depression can include: counseling, coaching, psychotherapy, meds, or a combination of some of the above or all of the above.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is an evidence based treatment used in therapy to help with depression and anxiety as well as other disorders. CBT looks at the relationship between thoughts, feelings, and behaviors .

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy looks at thoughts to see if the thoughts have distortions in them. By identifying unhealthy thoughts we can change them to healthier thoughts. These healthier thoughts will impact our feelings as well as future behavior in a positive manner .

An example of some cognitive distortions follow :

Black or White Thinking: you look at things in black n white and see little shades of gray or other colors in your spectrum .

Mind Reading: you read others minds and jump to a conclusion that is not supported by facts .

Magnification or minimization: you blow things out of proportion or you shrink their importance .

Labeling: instead of stating you made a mistake you call yourself names .

CBT is a powerful form of therapy and counseling that has evidence and research to support it by the medical as well as the psychological experts.

CBT therapy is based on the fact that our thoughts cause our feelings and behaviors not external things, like people, situations and events. CBT therapy is a research based therapy w evidence to show positive results. It is rapid in terms of results obtained compared to other therapeutic techniques .

Cognitive Behavioral therapy is considered a brief type of therapy .

The average number of sessions is approx. 12.

CBT Cognitive Behavioral Therapy makes use of homework and is highly instructive in nature.

Rapport with the therapist is important in CBT however the focus is on teaching rational self therapy skills.

Learning what goals you desire and helping you achieve those goals is part of CBT.

CBT is just one of many techniques used to create changes in moods and depression.

LifeWorks AZ counseling provides therapy and psychotherapy for teens and children with depression, anxiety , emotional and behavioral issues.

A tragedy happened at a Tempe, Arizona High school yesterday . A student athlete committed suicide at a Tempe High school not far from Arizona State University.

Teen and child depression is on the rise and can not be ignored. Depression is not an adult disorder . Millions of children and teen adolescents feel depressed and there are a slew of reasons today that impact a child or adolescents mood.

A child or teen does not have to have had a traumatic childhood in order to be depressed . A teen can have loving parents and spiritual parents and feel depressed.

As a safety measure parents should lock up all pills , medications , guns, knives , blades , weapons at all times regardless of a child’s mood. Parents should lock up all alcohol as well . Parents should monitor social media, smart phones , video game dialogue , texting , and be as involved as they can with their child or teen . Some parents would say it is an invasion of privacy however better safe than sorry . Children state they are excelling in the classroom and passing all classes however parents must still verify and look at report cards and look at missing homework assignments. Teens spend a lot of time w electronic devices and those that are in their room and not communicating daily with parents . They must get off these devices and communicate with parents about their day in detail . If not a parent has no idea why is going on mentally , physically , and emotionally with ones children .

Setting limits and boundaries and requiring family interaction is vital . Spending one on one time with your teen is important and will help find out what is going on in their lives . Make it a requirement before they use their : video games , computers , smart phones etc . Schedule one on one time with each child and this lets them know they are important as well as they are more likely to share information with you than in front of the whole family . Most children will not share their true pain or depressed mood in front of the whole family or at dinner .

I find wonderful children and teens that have very negative thought processes about themselves . Children that are excellent students and athletes still can be very depressed . Many suffer from low self esteem and many suffer from social or peer challenges . Many are depressed about family dynamics and school pressures.

The best approach is to have someone who has expertise and w children and parents ..guide you to help create balance and learn tools to manage depression , anxiety , self esteem, family issues and more .

Peter Breggin below on medications. He is a Psychiatrist with experience at Harvard.

Anti depressants for depression and anxiety are generally considered to be safe by TV, Doctors, however a close look at the evidence suggests you best do some serious research. Antidepressants have serious short and long term effects: like increase the risk of suicide and violent behavior in both children and adults, and increase the frequency and chronicity of depression. Chronic use of antidepressants also promotes dependency on drugs rather than fostering life skills to build positive thoughts, learn to control negative thoughts, learn problem solving, learn ways to control depression, learn ways to manage anxiety, learn ways to improve communication, learn ways to improve self esteem., learn ways to become goal oriented and motivated. Learn ways to improve communication with family, peers, and acquaintances.

Women have an increased likelihood of happy a baby with

A developmental disability when using SSRI medications.

The adverse effects of antidepressants include movement disorders, agitation, sexual dysfunction, improper bone development, improper brain development, gastrointestinal bleeding.

Psychological side effects

Perhaps the best known psychological side effect of SSRIs is “amotivational syndrome”, a condition with symptoms that are clinically similar to those that develop when the frontal lobes of the brain are damaged. The syndrome is characterized by apathy, disinhibited behavior, demotivation and a personality change similar to the effects of). All psychoactive drugs, including antidepressants, are known to blunt our emotional responses to some extent.

Agitation is such a common side effect with SSRIs that the drug companies have consistently sought to hide it during clinical trials by prescribing a tranquilizer or sedative along with the antidepressant.

After years of foot-dragging and thousands of excess suicides, the FDA finally admitted that “two to three children out of every hundred” could be expected to develop suicidal thoughts or actions as a result of antidepressant therapy (Harris 2004). The risk of suicide events for children receiving SSRIs has been three times higher than placebo. (Healy 2005). Amazingly, no bans or restrictions have been placed on their use in children in the U.S.

While the increased risk of suicide in children has become better known, most people are unaware that a similar risk exists for adults. When adult antidepressant trials were re-analyzed to compensate for erroneous methodologies, SSRIs have consistently revealed a risk of suicide (completed or attempted) that is two to four times higher than placebo (Healy 2005).

There are volumes of published research and many books which present this information with much more detail.

Teen Depression Anxiety: sleep, Counseling Therapy

Friday, April 1st, 2016

Teens are stressed and are not getting enough sleep. This is impacting: depression, anxiety, anger, irritability and school performance. Electronics: TV, SmartPhones, Social media, Texting, You tube, instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, video games, is having a huge impact on youth in a very negative way: emotionally and behaviorally in Phoenix and Scottsdale Arizona and throughout the United States and World wide. If sleep and diet are not addressed change will not happen.

Teens are up late on: video games, net flix, TV, You tube, texting, social media, snap chat, instagram and they are receiving limited sleep. This lack of sleep is creating: depressed mood, anxiety, irritability, and is harming academics.Behavioral and mental health and family stress!

While a stressful event can lead to a bad night of sleep, it’s what you do in response to stress that can be the difference between a few bad nights and chronic insomnia..

Research studies state that positive reframing, acceptance and humor are the most effective coping strategies for people dealing with failures.

Positive reframing was helpful for students high in perfectionistic concerns is particularly important because it suggests that even people high in perfectionistic concerns, who have a tendency to be dissatisfied no matter what they achieve, are able to experience high levels of satisfaction if they use positive reframing coping when dealing with perceived failures.

Reframing is a resiliency skill that helps people to overcome adversity and reach life goals.  Remember the old metaphor “Is the glass is half-full or half-empty?”  This is a perfect example of how the same event can be looked at in a positive or negative light. Positive reframing means trying to reconsider things in a positive light, and it is a powerful way to transform your thinking. Positive reframing does not change the situation, but it can certainly reduce damage and put things into a healthier perspective.

When you are experiencing positive emotions like joy, contentment, and love, you will see more possibilities in your life. These findings were among the first that suggested positive emotions broaden your sense of possibility and open your mind up to more options.

Finding ways to build happiness and positive emotions into your life — whether it is through meditation, writing, playing a pickup basketball game, or anything else — provides more than just a momentary decrease in stress and a few smiles.

Periods of positive emotion and unhindered exploration are when you see the possibilities for how your past experiences fit into your future life, when you begin to develop skills that blossom into useful talents later on, and when you spark the urge for further exploration and adventure.

To put it simply: Seek joy, play often, and pursue adventure. Your brain will do the rest.

Exercise daily is very important for teenagers and adults in order to help with sleep. Eating healthy is also very important. Children should have little sugar and caffeine this will disrupt healthy sleep. Children and teenagers should not be playing video games after 6 pm and they should not be watching TV or playing electronics three hours  before bed time. The child or teens brain thinks it is day time due to the screen lights and it manipulates the brain got stay yup late.

Research shows that youth that do not get 9-11 hours sleep per night will have behavioral issues including: anger, depression, anxiety, and more with limited sleep each night.

Below are four research based articles on how sleep impacts: mood, anxiety, depression, as well as behavior and academic performance. In a recent study poor sleep was linked to: ADHD, Depression, Bipolar Disorder, autism, epilepsy and more.

It is important to address sleep issues early on to change tis behavior for children and teens.

When I see children that are having: anxiety, depression, and social skill and academic issues many times sleep is an issue in that the children are not getting enough sleep. Poor sleep is linked to many behavioral problems as well.

While a stressful event can lead to a bad night of sleep, it’s what you do in response to stress that can be the difference between a few bad nights and chronic insomnia..

Research studies state that positive reframing, acceptance and humor are the most effective coping strategies for people dealing with failures.

Positive reframing was helpful for students high in perfectionistic concerns is particularly important because it suggests that even people high in perfectionistic concerns, who have a tendency to be dissatisfied no matter what they achieve, are able to experience high levels of satisfaction if they use positive reframing coping when dealing with perceived failures.

Reframing is a resiliency skill that helps people to overcome adversity and reach life goals.  Remember the old metaphor “Is the glass is half-full or half-empty?”  This is a perfect example of how the same event can be looked at in a positive or negative light. Positive reframing means trying to reconsider things in a positive light, and it is a powerful way to transform your thinking. Positive reframing does not change the situation, but it can certainly reduce damage and put things into a healthier perspective.

When you are experiencing positive emotions like joy, contentment, and love, you will see more possibilities in your life. These findings were among the first that suggested positive emotions broaden your sense of possibility and open your mind up to more options.

Finding ways to build happiness and positive emotions into your life — whether it is through meditation, writing, playing a pickup basketball game, or anything else — provides more than just a momentary decrease in stress and a few smiles.

Periods of positive emotion and unhindered exploration are when you see the possibilities for how your past experiences fit into your future life, when you begin to develop skills that blossom into useful talents later on, and when you spark the urge for further exploration and adventure.

To put it simply: Seek joy, play often, and pursue adventure. Your brain will do the rest.

Exercise daily is very important for teenagers and adults in order to help with sleep. Eating healthy is also very important. Children should have little sugar and caffeine this will disrupt healthy sleep. Children and teenagers should not be playing video games after 6 pm and they should not be watching TV or playing electronics three hours  before bed time. The child or teens brain thinks it is day time due to the screen lights and it manipulates the brain got stay yup late.

Research shows that youth that do not get 9-11 hours sleep per night will have behavioral issues including: anger, depression, anxiety, and more with limited sleep each night.

A study published in the Jan 1 issue of Sleep found that children with sleep disturbances are more severely depressed, have more depressive symptoms and have more anxiety diorders, compared with children without sleep disturbances.”

There are a wide array of reasons why people have difficulty sleeping.

Eliminating caffeine, alcohol, and marijuana, as well as other drugs must be looked at .

Watching TV, playing video games, using cell phones close to bed time can impact sleep. Lack of exercise impacts sleep.

In a recent medical report a physician reported that sedative hypnotics are over prescribed . Over 60 million prescriptions were filled in the US last year.

Lunesta and Ambien have side effects and some have been: driving in their sleep, sleep walking, cooking in their sleep, confusion etc.

Experts state these medications are for short term use.

There are a lot of elements involved in the body and mind and if this is addressed sleep will

follow.

Sixty six percent of children up to middle school are not getting sufficient sleep according to sleep experts.

Children are falling asleep in school and schools are pushing back start times however this may not be the solution.

Research has shown children that are deprived of sleep are prone to unhealthy and behaviors that are not productive: acting out behaviors, depression, anxiety, mood swings, inability to focus ( ADD, ADHD) symptoms, weight gain,

The child’s sleep deprived body releases adrenaline and cortisol that not only make them hyper and unable to focus and impact brain development.

Electronics in the bedroom is one of the biggest obstacles to sleep: texting, tv, Internet, face-book, social media etc.

Diet and exercise are vital for sound sleep.

Setting limits and boundaries is possible. Parents can learn to set boundaries that will help your child: behaviorally , emotionally, socially, mentally, and physically.

The Academy of Pediatrics suggest that children be limited to less than

two hours per day of TV and media. Research shows that media can

diminish a child’s vocabulary, math skills, and social skills. There is

a great deal of research that correlates : sleep problems, aggression,

anger, behavioral problems, ADHD, lack of attention at school, obesity

and more to children that are watching on average 32 hours of TV and

media per week. In most homes the TV is on for half the day if not more.

Children are not interacting with peers and family members. Children are

not eating dinner with families and communicating. The TV or technology

is the focus and healthy social and communication skills are eroding

exponentially. Children and teens are not exercising which is essential

for physical health as well as mental health. Children are not reading

books, playing instruments, playing with peers, joining groups and

organizations and are isolating in their rooms or homes watching media.

Obesity is an epidemic in the USA and this is no exception for children.

One out of three high school students are not involved in any exercise.

Many children and teens spend most of their time playing video games,

watching tv, or on the computer. Limiting media time is one huge piece

in decreasing weight and obesity problems among youth. Of course

exercise and healthy eating habits are important as well. The first step

is limiting media consumption.

Thousands of studies have been done on child aggression/ anger and TV

since he early 1950’s and only a couple dozen state that aggression and

TV watching frequency increase childhood aggression. TV desensitizes

children toward violence, anger, aggression, verbal abuse and more.

Children will be exposed to over 200,000 violent acts and over 15,000

murders before they reach age 18. Do you really want your children

exposed to this much violence?.

Tv research shows that exposure to alcohol and smoking increase the

likelihood your child will gravitate toward these products. This is why

advertisers spend Billions of dollars each year to increase sales and

exposure of their products.

Children and parents can learn healthy skills and tips in counseling at

LifeWorks AZ PLLC to create health and balance for a child, teen and

family. Learning healthy skills to promote health, manage mood, increase

social skills, manage behaviors in the home, increase success a school.

overcome negative thinking, address anxiety issues,increase self

esteem, manage depressed mood, increase motivation, make healthy

choices, manage anger and more.

Sixty six percent of children up to middle school are not getting

sufficient sleep according to Narional sleep experts.

Children are falling asleep in school and schools are pushing back

start times however this may not be the solution.

Research has shown children that are deprived of sleep are prone to

unhealthy and behaviors that are not productive: acting out behaviors,

depression, anxiety, mood swings, inability to focus ( ADD, ADHD)

symptoms, weight gain,

The child’s sleep deprived body releases adrenaline and cortisol that

not only make them hyper and unable to focus and impact brain

development.

Electronics in the bedroom is one of the biggest obstacles to sleep:

texting, tv, Internet, facebook, social media etc.

Diet and exercise are vital for sound sleep.

Setting limits and boundaries is possible. Parents can learn to set

boundaries that will help your child: behaviorally , emotionally,

socially, mentally, and physically.

Below are four research based articles on how sleep impacts: mood, anxiety, depression, as well as behavior and academic performance. In a recent study poor sleep was linked to: ADHD, Depression, Bipolar Disorder, autism, epilepsy and more.

It is important to address sleep issues early on to change tis behavior for children and teens.

When I see children that are having: anxiety, depression, and social skill and academic issues many times sleep is an issue in that the children are not getting enough sleep. Poor sleep is linked to many behavioral problems as well.

While a stressful event can lead to a bad night of sleep, it’s what you do in response to stress that can be the difference between a few bad nights and chronic insomnia..

Research studies state that positive reframing, acceptance and humor are the most effective coping strategies for people dealing with failures.

Positive reframing was helpful for students high in perfectionistic concerns is particularly important because it suggests that even people high in perfectionistic concerns, who have a tendency to be dissatisfied no matter what they achieve, are able to experience high levels of satisfaction if they use positive reframing coping when dealing with perceived failures.

Reframing is a resiliency skill that helps people to overcome adversity and reach life goals.  Remember the old metaphor “Is the glass is half-full or half-empty?”  This is a perfect example of how the same event can be looked at in a positive or negative light. Positive reframing means trying to reconsider things in a positive light, and it is a powerful way to transform your thinking. Positive reframing does not change the situation, but it can certainly reduce damage and put things into a healthier perspective.

When you are experiencing positive emotions like joy, contentment, and love, you will see more possibilities in your life. These findings were among the first that suggested positive emotions broaden your sense of possibility and open your mind up to more options.

Finding ways to build happiness and positive emotions into your life — whether it is through meditation, writing, playing a pickup basketball game, or anything else — provides more than just a momentary decrease in stress and a few smiles.

Periods of positive emotion and unhindered exploration are when you see the possibilities for how your past experiences fit into your future life, when you begin to develop skills that blossom into useful talents later on, and when you spark the urge for further exploration and adventure.

To put it simply: Seek joy, play often, and pursue adventure. Your brain will do the rest.

Exercise daily is very important for teenagers and adults in order to help with sleep. Eating healthy is also very important. Children should have little sugar and caffeine this will disrupt healthy sleep. Children and teenagers should not be playing video games after 6 pm and they should not be watching TV or playing electronics three hours  before bed time. The child or teens brain thinks it is day time due to the screen lights and it manipulates the brain got stay yup late.

Research shows that youth that do not get 9-11 hours sleep per night will have behavioral issues including: anger, depression, anxiety, and more with limited sleep each night.

A study published in the Jan 1 issue of Sleep found that children with sleep disturbances are more severely depressed, have more depressive symptoms and have more anxiety diorders, compared with children without sleep disturbances.”

There are a wide array of reasons why people have difficulty sleeping

Eliminating caffeine, alcohol, and marijuana, as well as other drugs must be looked at .

Watching TV, playing video games, using cell phones close to bed time can impact sleep. Lack of exercise impacts sleep.

In a recent medical report a physician reported that sedative hypnotics are over prescribed . Over 60 million prescriptions were filled in the US last year.

Lunesta and Ambien have side effects and some have been: driving in their sleep, sleep walking, cooking in their sleep, confusion etc.

Experts state these medications are for short term use.

There are a lot of elements involved in the body and mind and if this is addressed sleep will

follow.

Sixty six percent of children up to middle school are not getting sufficient sleep according to sleep experts.

Children are falling asleep in school and schools are pushing back start times however this may not be the solution.

Research has shown children that are deprived of sleep are prone to unhealthy and behaviors that are not productive: acting out behaviors, depression, anxiety, mood swings, inability to focus ( ADD, ADHD) symptoms, weight gain,

The child’s sleep deprived body releases adrenaline and cortisol that not only make them hyper and unable to focus and impact brain development.

Electronics in the bedroom is one of the biggest obstacles to sleep: texting, tv, Internet, face-book, social media etc.

Diet and exercise are vital for sound sleep.

Setting limits and boundaries is possible. Parents can learn to set boundaries that will help your child: behaviorally , emotionally, socially, mentally, and physically.

Teen anxiety Depression therapy and counseling Phoenix Arizona

Wednesday, March 30th, 2016

Many researchers state that depression in Teenagers is not genetic and that it is triggered by life events . There are many life events that can create a depressed mood. Some things can be: loss of a loved one, grief, changing schools, divorce, parents fighting, being bullied, conflict, criticism, judgment, being yelled at, physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, moving, changing schools  and much more.

Experts state that life events and life stressors trigger depression and anxiety in families and in children. The brain is involved with every thought and every emotion however research in genes has not advanced treatment for depression and anxiety very much according to Clinical Psychologists in England.

Childhood trauma is a very very big predictor for serious mental health problems in teen years and in adulthood. Experts state that social factor and interpersonal factors like family, friends, work, school, peers, are very important to address in order to help youth treat depression and anxiety issues throughout the USA and in Arizona .

Many physical symptoms like stomach problems and headaches are traced back to mental health issues like: anxiety, panic, depression, bipolar disorders and more. Over Thirty five percent of the population has been diagnosed with a mental health disorder like: ADHD , Depression, Anxiety , Oppositional Defiant disorder and more.

There is no magic pill that teaches a child social skills, manners, how to get along with people, forgiveness, motivation, etc. There is no pill that teaches a child healthy choices and healthy habits and healthy thoughts. Many children and teens sabotage themselves with unhealthy daily thoughts that impact their feelings and their behaviors at home with family as well as at school.

Children and teens need to learn how to cope with life stressors which involve feelings. Feelings of loss, guilt, anger, sadness, pain, tragedy, loss of loved ones, abandonment, bullying, rejection, criticism, judgments and much more. Youth need skills to learn to communicate with family members in healthy ways. Adolescent and children need to learn how to manage anger and regulate mood because this is all part of life and no pill will magically cure all theses challenges.

Mental health is very complex. A child who has been neglected and abused and has been separated from their mom and Dad have many challenges . Pain is complex for children and teens and counseling is vital in addressing that pain.

Teen depression Counseling and Therapy Phoenix, Scottsdale , Chandler Arizona

Monday, February 1st, 2016

A task force for the Journal of the American Medical Association is updating it’s guidelines for depression screening on Children and Teenagers. The task force back in 2009 suggests that children 12-18 be screened by physicians for depression at each visit. Many children and teens and families do not seek mental health assistance do to a stigma however will see their primary care physician.

Child and teen depression is a major source of disability. It can impact: relationships, motivation, family, grades, mood, sleep, and many other behaviors. The earlier a child or teen receives support from counseling and psychotherapy the quicker balance can be created in the child or adolescent teenagers life.

Over 8 million children and Teens ages 3-18 in the United States meet the criteria for depression. Parents, teachers, and adults have failed to recognize that children and teens get depressed and many due suffer from depressive disorders. Mental health experts and medical experts are working toward educating society on this information.

Cognitive behavioral therapy has shown great results with children, teens, and adults. Children that can learn to manage mood with CBT as well as a number of other tools will feel empowered, in balance, and ready to excel in life. Working with parents as well as the child or teen shows excellent results. A team effort is obviously best according to research on families and children and teenagers.

Many children and teens are depressed or have signs of depression. Many children and teens are struggling with : family issues, divorced families, academics, blended families, low self esteem, poor social skills, peer pressure, hormonal changes, grief and loss. Many times teens will stuff their thoughts and feelings . Some teens hide in their room and avoid communication. Some teens are on their Smart Phones, TV, Netflix, and Video games. Too much of anything is not ok and parents can ask themselves is my son or daughter in balance or out of balance with their habits? Below is a story of a Tempe Teen that was depressed and it ended tragically. The good news is there are signs of depression and the sooner one gets help the better. After the article there is a list of some red flags your child may be depressed. There are experts in treating child and teen depression through counseling and therapy and other treatments.

I have worked with thousands of teens with depressed moods and depression. Moving to a new school, change, academic pressure, not getting along with mom or Dad, negative thinking, low self esteem, social dynamics, past challenges are being carried around by children and teens and these items need to be addressed to create health and balance.

A tragedy happened at a Tempe, Arizona High school yesterday . A student athlete committed suicide at a Tempe High school not far from Arizona State University.

Teen and child depression is on the rise and can not be ignored. Depression is not an adult disorder . Millions of children and teen adolescents feel depressed and there are a slew of reasons today that impact a child or adolescents mood.

A child or teen does not have to have had a traumatic childhood in order to be depressed . A teen can have loving parents and spiritual parents and feel depressed.

As a safety measure parents should lock up all pills , medications , guns, knives , blades , weapons at all times regardless of a child’s mood. Parents should lock up all alcohol as well . Parents should monitor social media, smart phones , video game dialogue , texting , and be as involved as they can with their child or teen . Some parents would say it is an invasion of privacy however better safe than sorry . Children state they are excelling in the classroom and passing all classes however parents must still verify and look at report cards and look at missing homework assignments. Teens spend a lot of time w electronic devices and those that are in their room and not communicating daily with parents . They must get off these devices and communicate with parents about their day in detail . If not a parent has no idea why is going on mentally , physically , and emotionally with ones children .

Setting limits and boundaries and requiring family interaction is vital . Spending one on one time with your teen is important and will help find out what is going on in their lives . Make it a requirement before they use their : video games , computers , smart phones etc . Schedule one on one time with each child and this lets them know they are important as well as they are more likely to share information with you than in front of the whole family . Most children will not share their true pain or depressed mood in front of the whole family or at dinner .

I find wonderful children and teens that have very negative thought processes about themselves . Children that are excellent students and athletes still can be very depressed . Many suffer from low self esteem and many suffer from social or peer challenges . Many are depressed about family dynamics and school pressures.

The best approach is to have someone who works w children and parents guide you to help create balance and learn tools to manage depression , anxiety , self esteem, family issues and more .

Teens face a myriad of pressures , from changes in development to questions about who they are and where they are going w peers, school, and their future. The natural transition toward adulthood can bring parental challenges and conflict as the adolescent teen pushes for their independence .

It is not simple to differentiate between depression and teen mood swings . Some teens that are depressed are not sad or withdrawn . Many depressed teens are angry , full of rage , defiant, and irritable and this may be depression.

Some signs of depression in teens are: sadness , hopelessness , irritability , anger , hostility , frequent crying or tears , withdrawal from family and friends, loss of interest in activities , change in eating habits or sleep habits , agitation, restless , guilt, worthless feelings , concentrating issues , thought of death, suicidal thoughts and more.

It is best to have a professional assessment from a professional who has expertise in teen and children .

There are many signs that may indicate your teen is down or depressed or is suffering from depression.

Some red flags that should not be ignored are: sadness , crying, tearfulness, hopelessness, a decrease in activities , inability to enjoy activities that were enjoyable.

Low energy, isolation, poor communication and a lack of connection w family and friends is a sign that something is going on that needs attention. Increased irritability and anger and rage are common w depressed children and teens.

Physical complaints : stomach aches , pain , etc are signs your teenmay be depressed. Changes in sleeping habits and or eating patterns is a red flag as well .

Self destructive behaviors, suicidal thoughts, self harming, drug andalcohol abuse are signs your child need help asap!

Parents should seek professional help if any of the above are going onas soon as possible. Depression is a very serious condition that impacts : thoughts, mood,

and behaviors. Teen depression can be treated .

Teens face many stressors and pressures. Transitioning from child to an adult. Figuring out who they are and what they want to do with life . Hormonal changes and wanting to fit in socially are just a few. Teens with depression do not always appear sad. Many teens display anger and irritability and aggression. Long lasting changes in mood, behavior, personality are all huge red flags that your teen needs professional help.

Some common symptoms for teen depression are: hopelessness , sad, blue, loss of interest in activities, withdrawal from friends and family , crying and frequent tears, changes in eating , changes in sleeping, agitation , restlessness, little motivation , lack of energy or excitement , fatigue , difficulty concentrating , thoughts of death , suicide or self harm.

There are many excellent counseling tools to help elevate mood and treat depression. CBT therapy looks at unhealthy thoughts that have no facts to support them and how these thoughts impact mood. DBT has a few elements: awareness/mindfulness, distress tolerance/mood regulation, interpersonal effectiveness. These are all research based and evidence based counseling techniques that have been used for decades with positive results. There are many other effective techniques that can be used to create health and balance for your child or teenager.

Lifeworks Az has a specialization in child and teen depression counseling and therapy, child adolescent counseling, family counseling, family therapy in Phoenix Arizona, Scottsdale Arizona and serves valley wide.

Child: Media, Advertisements, feeding anxiety and depression.

Tuesday, December 1st, 2015

We have seen dramatic increases in anxiety disorders and depressive disorders over the past 25 years in children, teens, and young adults.According to sophisticated research using the MMPI psychological testing tool and more research shows that children and teens are less happy and anxiety and depression are on the rise at points almost ten fold from fifty years ago. Economic cycles do not seem to correlate with why children and teens are less happy today than fifty years ago.

Research shows that a lot has to do with a child and teenagers thoughts and perceptions that they carry with them 24-7.One thing that evidence based research tells us about anxiety and depression is that they correlate significantly with people’s sense of control or lack of control over their own lives. Children, Teens, adolescents, and adults who believe that they are in control of their own fate and lives are less likely to become anxious or depressed than those who believe that they are not in control and have thoughts of hopelessness.

Research has used instruments that measure internal and external locus of control to see what individuals believe about their own fate and their own future. The research shows that those children that believe they have control in their own destiny and future or more happy less anxious and less depressed than those that do not feel like they have a sense of control in determining their future.

Intrinsic goals are those that have to do with one’s own development as a person—such as becoming competent in endeavors of one’s choosing and developing a meaningful outlook on one’s future. Extrinsic goals, on the other hand, are those that have to do with inanimate objects and other people’s judgments. a prestigious “job”, lots of income, a fancy Car, a giant home, look beautiful?

Studies show that teens and college students believe that being well off financially is more important than life’s philosophy. The opposite thought process was true in the 1960’s and 1970’s and anxiety and depression were dwarfed by todays statistics. The extent that my emotional sense of satisfaction comes from progress toward intrinsic goals shows I can control my emotional wellbeing. To the extent that my satisfaction comes from others’ judgments and rewards, I have much less control over my emotional state and therefore depression and anxiety arise.

Materialism pushed through media, tv, internet, advertisements, imply that happiness is obtained by consumption, good looks, buying goods, a fancy car. This clearly is not the case in research studies on happiness and health.

Video games has taken away a lot of free play time. By depriving children of opportunities to play on their own, away from direct adult supervision and control, we are depriving them of opportunities to learn how to take control of their own lives. We may think we are protecting them, but in fact we are diminishing their joy, diminishing their sense of internal control and  preventing them from discovering and exploring the activities they would most be passionate about , and thus increasing the chances they will become anxious, depressed or have another mental disorder.

Teaching children to find internal success with :school, academics, chores, work, social, athletics, music, the arts, family and friends will build a foundation for your child and teen for happiness and success.

Child Depression CBT Therapy Counseling Phoenix, Scottsdale, Chandler Arizona

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2015

There is as much evidence for cognitive behavioural therapy as there is for medications to treat mild and moderate depression, as well as evidence that they have a synergistic effect,” says Dr. Gratzer. “In other words, for the hundreds of thousands of Canadians struggling with depression, Internet-assisted cognitive behavioural therapy offers a cost-effective and empowering way of accessing an important treatment.”

One of the most common types of mental health disorders that children, teens, and women experience is depression. We all have times when we feel: down, low, unmotivated and lack energy however when symptoms occur for over two weeks it may be sign of a depressive disorder, grief and loss and more.

Major depression occurs twice as frequently in women as major depression occurs in men. Depression is a persistant state that will negatively affect ones physical well being and health as well as how one performs, behaves, and ones mood.

Depression is one of the most common mental health disorders in society however it is not diagnosed due to a number of reasons and it needs to be looked at by a professional in order to help alleviate symptoms that impact ones life.

Many things contribute to depression: grief and loss, loss of friends, changes in relationships, new schools, new life transitions, negative thinking, financial stress, family stress, abuse, genetics, biological predispositions, environmental factors and much much more.

Treatment for depression can include: counseling, coaching, psychotherapy, meds, or a combination of some of the above or all of the above.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is an evidence based treatment used in therapy to help with depression and anxiety as well as other disorders. CBT looks at the relationship between thoughts, feelings, and behaviors .

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy looks at thoughts to see if the thoughts have distortions in them. By identifying unhealthy thoughts we can change them to healthier thoughts. These healthier thoughts will impact our feelings as well as future behavior in a positive manner .

An example of some cognitive distortions follow :

Black or White Thinking: you look at things in black n white and see little shades of gray or other colors in your spectrum .

Mind Reading: you read others minds and jump to a conclusion that is not supported by facts .

Magnification or minimization: you blow things out of proportion or you shrink their importance .

Labeling: instead of stating you made a mistake you call yourself names .

CBT is a powerful form of therapy that has evidence and research to support it.

CBT is based on the fact that our thoughts cause our feelings and behaviors not external things, like people, situations and events. CBT is a research based therapy w evidence to show positive results. It is rapid in terms of results obtained compared to other therapeutic techniques .

Cognitive Behavioral therapy is considered a brief type of therapy .

The average number of sessions is approx 15.

CBT Cognitive Behavioral Therapy makes use of homework and is highly instructive in nature.

Rapport with the therapist is important in CBT however the focus is on teaching rational self therapy skills.

Learning what goals you desire and helping you achieve those goals is part of CBT.

CBT is just one of many techniques used to create changes in moods and depression.

LifeWorks AZ counseling provides therapy and psychotherapy for adults , families, and teens in phoenix Arizona.

Teenager Therapy: adhd, anxiety, Depression and sleep Phoenix Arizona

Tuesday, October 13th, 2015

Only six percent of children and teens in their Sophomore year and Three percent of teens in their Senior year of high school are receiving adequate sleep. Professional research states that teens can not ” catch up” on sleep on the weekends. Research shows that a teen needs at least 8.5 -9.5 hours of sleep each night.

Almost 70 percent of children and teens are sleep deprived and this is a big issue. The impact on health and academics can be profound. Eating, exercising, and sleeping are some of the most vital elements for your child or teens health and well being and success in life.

Inadequate sleep is connected with:  ADHD,diabetes, obesity, mood disorders, anxiety, depression,lack of focus at school. Poor sleep is also connected to risky behaviors, suicidal behaviors, car accidents. Studies have been done with teens receiving adequate sleep versus inadequate sleep and the increase in car accidents and fatalities is statistically significant it would be like allowing a teen to drive impaired on alcohol, drunk, or after using weed. Teen judgments are impaired as well as their ability to curb impulsive decisions and actions. Teens decision making process is also impaired when not receiving adequate sleep.

Sleeping less than 8 hours has been linked to three times the amount of suicide attempts.

Electronics and media are one of the biggest obstacles to adequate sleep. Children and teens are texting late into the night and evening and parents are not able to stop this behavior unless they have the : tv, iPhone, PC, iPad, in their room locked up. The light from all electronics effects the hormones in the body ( melatonin) and has an adverse effect on your child and teenagers sleep.

Many teens will sleep in on weekends because they are exhausted or because they are out late with their peers. Research shows that teens will have a harder time waking up on Monday to start their school week and academics .

Parents must empower themselves in monitoring and controlling these electronic devices if the desire is health, balance, and success, and happiness for your child and teenager. Setting limits on video games, internet use, Tv, Iphone, smartphone, iPads and more are vital for your child’s academics , social skills, interpersonal skills, and health.

Teen Mental Health ADHD Depression and Exercise !

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015

Exercise is one of the biggest elements in managing a child’s health and behaviors. Encouraging your child to exercise daily is one of the most important things a parent can teach a child.

Parents can tie in a reward after your child completes his exercise and after they have completed their homework. Life is all about work before play and teaching these valuable habits is vital for your child’s mental and physical health.

Below you will see info on behaviors that change with exercise.

Children with ADHD symptoms can focus better and are less impulsive when they participate in exercise daily .

Increasing physical activity is one part of a non pharmaceutical ( medications) treatment for ADHD that is backed by research .

Research showed in attentiveness improved with more exercise . The best natural item a parent can do is encourage exercise daily with your child.

Exercise is a huge help for children and teenagers with ADHD. Research shows that exercise before school or after school will help your child become more attentive, improve their academics, become less moody, and less impulsive. Teachers that allow there students to get up out of their seats for short bursts of activity find their students with ADHD are more attentive and more focused than keeping them in a sitting position for the whole class period.

Research has been done with children whom have exercised for 30 minutes before class versus no exercise before class and then teachers reported how they behaved in relationship to: attention, focus, impulsivity, behavior, performance etc. Aerobic physical activity shows great benefits to children with ADHD as well as other children in terms of: mood, behavior, attention, diminished impulsivity, and performance at school.

It is a real pity that schools have decreased the amount of physical activity children receive per day. Children will perform better and learn if they are able to exercise and run around, play sports, and move physically and aerobically. Jumping in place, doing squats, push ups, jump rope etc are all beneficial for children at school. Teachers that can break up the day with 4 ten minute bursts of exercise will have a classroom that is more attentive and will learn more and focus more on the subject matter than having the children sit all day without exercise. Schools that have used exercise have seen a huge decrease in children on ADHD medications decreasing by almost 33 percent which is huge statistically.

Research has shown that test scores improved for children that exercised before the test versus children that just sat and read books. Just twenty minutes of exercise improved  scholastic performance in one research study with children. Many experts state that daily exercise can replace medication for children on ADHD for many children.

There are many tools to help children with ADHD including: counseling, exercise, diet, structure, parenting tools, mood regulation tools, behavior modification and more that will help your child overcome ADHD symptoms.

Some teens send two hundred texts a day or 6000 texts a month. Theissue here is that teens are not developing social skills and healthy communication.

Another issue is that adolescents that are texting are not spending time face to face with family and developing healthy connections.

Interpersonal skills are suffering and this can impact obtaining a job as well as creating healthy relationships.

Teenagers are also spending so much time on texting they are not taking time to focus on homework or exercise.

The best thing a parent can do is set limits on texting and

electronics . If limits are not set … academics can suffer ,

relationships w family will suffer, health will deteriorate, mood can be impacted

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