Suicide Prevention

5 Simple Steps to Help Prevent Suicide

By | Anxiety, Biltmore, Blog, Communication, Coping, Depression, Grief & Loss, Mental Health, PTSD, Stress, Suicide | No Comments

Earlier in the week we shared a TED Talk about how to start a conversation about suicide. In the last few months we have had a number of big name celebrities die from suicide. Our media once again has become saturated with those who many of us look up to and their decision to take their own lives.

Whether you think that posting about it, talking about it, or sharing about it glorifies suicide or supports prevention, there are a few basic steps we all need to be reminded of to help someone close to use who might be struggling.

According to Elana Premack Sandler L.C.S.W, M.P.H and her article on Psychology Today, there are 5 simple steps for suicide prevention.

  1. Ask
  2. Keep Them Safe
  3. Be There
  4. Help Them Connect
  5. Follow Up

It is hard to know what to do when someone we love has started to talk about suicide. Do we talk to them about it? Do we call for help? Do we ignore it and hope it goes away? Do we force them to get help?

These days there are a number of suicide prevention numbers and hotlines to call. 1-800-273-8255 is the National Suicide Hotline, and here in Arizona there is a local number called Empact 1-480-784-1514

But when you are close to someone and see them struggling, it’s easy to be unsure of what to do. These 5 simple steps are easy to remember, and can help someone you love get the help they need. Sometimes we are afraid of asking if someone is thinking about taking their own life, but we need to ask these tough questions. It opens the door for our loved ones to know that we care about them, and are concerned. When we take action to keep them safe, we can keep a situation from escalating. We can keep them on the phone, go over to their house if possible, send a neighbor or a friend over while we are connecting them with phone numbers or other resources for help.

It is important to follow up with our loved one and ask them how they are doing. By following up we are letting that person know we care about their long term health and happiness, and are willing to step in to keep them safe.

If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, please give them the Empact Crisis Line phone number 1-480-784-1514 or the National Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-8255

We are here to help as well. If you have any questions or would like to set up an appointment, call our office at 1-480-999-7070.

 

 

Black and white photo wit woman holding a calendar with Friday the 13th highlighted and she is crossing her fingers.

Bad Luck or Psychological Reversal?

By | Anxiety, Biltmore, Blog, Mental Health, Psychological Reversal | No Comments

Today is Friday the 13th, are you superstitious? A lot of us seem to have belief in bad luck, karma, or superstitions that can drive our personality and behaviors. Have you ever thought you have perpetual bad luck? It doesn’t matter what you do, but somehow terrible situations seem to always find you?

Psychological reversal is a subconscious condition of self sabotage. So instead of making well thought out constructive decisions, you seem to make decisions that will only bring you unhappiness and misery.

Does it seem like everything is going really well, and then somehow you make one decision that brings it all crashing down? This could be psychological reversal. If you feel uncomfortable or uneasy when things are going your way, or good things are happening to you, you might start to feel like your expectations are getting too high. Nobody wants to get let down or not have certain decisions that do not meet their high expectations. So instead of letting the situation play out on it’s own, someone who engages in psychological reversal will subconsciously sabotage the situation in order to have control over the expectation level. By self sabotaging, the person knows they will be disappointed and miserable, and this gives them a sense of control rather than not knowing if something will disappoint them or uplift them.

Is there anything that can be done for Psychological Reversal? According to Dale Petterson an Energy Therapist, he uses muscle kinesiology as a way to treat clients who are so focused on the miserable outcomes.

In an article on Psychology Today by Susan Heitler Ph.D;

‘Muscle kinesiology works a lot like how a lie detector test works. The client’s arm serves as a lever that amplifies the slight physical changes that indicate a stress response.’

To read more about the way Dale Petterson uses this technique to help psychological reversal, check out the article over on Psychology Today!

Thermometer showing hot temperatures and blue skies

How the heat can impact our mood

By | Anxiety, Biltmore, Blog, Depression, Mental Health | No Comments

If you are in Arizona right now, then you are completely aware of how hot it is! It’s Summer time in the desert right? The temperatures are constantly in the triple digits, and the sun is blaring down on us every day.

Do you ever feel like the heat is impacting your mood, or your emotions, or your behavior? If you do, there is some thought behind that. According to John M Grohol, Psy D and his article on Psych Central, there is research that shows that heat waves can lead to more aggressive and violent behavior, as well as more findings of substance abuse in the hotter temperatures.

When people are hot, their anxiety seems to go down, while their depression seems to go up. And we’ve all surely experienced being extra tired, lethargic, and low energy with the increase in temperatures.

As always the best advice when it’s so hot it is affecting you psychologically, is to get indoors where it’s cool and stay hydrated. Often waiting until you feel thirsty is too late when it comes to hydrating. There are also certain health conditions that worsen in the heat, like Multiple Sclerosis. Make sure you and those around you are aware of how the heat affects these conditions, and how to keep symptoms at bay.

There are some people who are not bothered by extreme weather changes, and who welcome to different seasons. And there are a lot of people whose moods and emotions change positively or negatively with the seasons. If you’re feeling like some of this extreme heat is affecting you in a negative way, our Counselors here at Biltmore Psychology and Counseling are happy to help with certain coping and management tools!

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Types of Treatment for PTSD

By | Anxiety, Biltmore, Blog, CBT, Coping, Counseling, Depression, Mental Health, PTSD, Stress | No Comments

When you or a loved one has suffered from a traumatic event, what can you expect when you seek treatment? There are a lot of different types of treatments out there, and the success always depends on the individual. But according to The American Psychological Association, there are four main types of treatments that they recommend during therapy for those suffering from PTSD.

  1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  2. Cognitive Processing Therapy
  3. Cognitive Therapy
  4. Prolonged Exposure

CBT or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a very common and well know treatment for clients who are seeking psychological help for their PTSD. It generally has the client focus on the behaviors, thoughts and/or feelings that they are associating with the trauma they experienced. When these behaviors, thoughts, and feelings are identified, they are then worked to change them from a negative pattern to a more positive one. When changing a behavior, it can then change the thoughts or feelings that go along with that behavior. And vice versa, changing the thoughts and feelings associated with a certain type of behavior can then in turn change the behavior.

CPT or Cognitive Processing Therapy is the specific type of CBT that allows clients to learn how to change the negative thoughts/feelings and behaviors associated with the trauma. It will give clients the tools to change and replace behaviors and thoughts in order to eliminate the negativity in their lives.

CT or Cognitive Therapy involves focusing on the thoughts a person is having that keeps bringing them back to the trauma and negative experience. CT will change or “interrupt” the thought process, in order to redirect the thoughts so that they are not having such an impact on the persons every day life.

Prolonged Exposure is a type of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that has the client focus on the memories, thoughts and/or feelings they have been avoiding that surround the traumatic event. It helps the client get rid of the avoidance, and face the memories head on, in order to challenge the memories/thoughts/feelings. This can help the client become aware the memories do not need to be avoided, and can actually be worked through in a positive manner.

Whatever type of treatment is done, or is sought out by the client, we know this can be a very difficult time in a persons life. We encourage anyone who has suffered or is suffering from something traumatic to seek help. You deserve to feel better, and to have control over your life!

 

 

 

To read more on the treatments at APA go here.

Male Counselor with pen and pad, facing a stressed young man on a couch.

The First Signs You Might Be Suffering From PTSD

By | Anxiety, Biltmore, Blog, Coping, Counseling, Depression, Mental Health, PTSD, Resolution, Sleep Deprivation, Stress, Suicide | No Comments

What are some of the signs you might be suffering with, or that you might be seeing someone close to you suffer with that could be an early indication of PTSD?

According to American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual-V2, in order to be diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder you must exhibit a few different groups of behaviors. Those are intrusion symptoms, avoidance, negative alterations in cognitions and mood, and alterations in arousal and reactivity. And these groups of symptoms are diagnosed by a Psychologist or a Psychiatrist.

Before this diagnosis happens, one might start having difficulty immediately after a particularly traumatic event. These early signs of stress after trauma can be a wide range of behaviors and emotions. The thoughts and emotions can lead to reactionary behaviors that could be considered warning signs that PTSD might be on the horizon. When trying to heal from a traumatic event, understanding how the event has changed your thought process, your emotions and your entire life early following the event is the key to help from developing PTSD. It is important to get help soon after, or get your loved one help soon after the event and if they start to exhibit emotions or behaviors that are not consistent with how they were before the event.

Some signs to look out for:

1- Sleeping Difficulties

2- Anger

3-Numbness and Disconnection

4-Depression

5-Chronic Anxiety

6-Reliving the Trauma

7-Feeling Unsafe

8-Suicidal Thoughts

9-Relationships Changes (person might become more irritable, angry, and have more conflicts in their relationships)

10-Loss of Self Esteem

11-Work Performance Declines

12-Lifestyle Changes (person might stop going to their gym classes, or stop engaging in other hobbies they used to love)

13-New Use (or increased use) of Drugs and Alchohl

Experiencing a traumatic event affects the person it happened to, as well as everyone surrounding this person. It is important to be supportive and loving, and to recognize when someone might not be coping with the event in a healthy manner. It is also important to recognize as a loved one, when you yourself might not be coping with the change in the loved one. Keeping communication open, getting the help that is needed on all accounts, are great first steps before a diagnosis of full fledged Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is considered. To read more about the early signs of PTSD, check out this article at Psychology Today by Jennifer Sweeton PsyD.