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Anger Management Therapy
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Addiction refers to the condition where a person has an uncontrollable urge to use or take a substance, to an extent where it causes harm to the body in some manner. Addiction is characterized by the chronic dysfunction of one’s brain. Studies reveal that one in every three people in the world has some sort of an addiction.
Addictive behaviour and substances create a pleasurable ‘high’, which is psychological or physical. A person showing signs of addiction will likely use more of such substances or indulge in certain behaviours to achieve a similar pleasure. Over time, it becomes difficult to control these urges.
What are the causes of addiction?
Addiction is usually caused due to-
• Early exposure to addictive substances
• Environmental factors
• Dysfunctional brain system (Nucleus accumbens and Anterior cingulated cortex): these areas are associated with the pleasurable sensations of your brain and increase your response to addictive behaviours and substances.
Addiction can be of any kind. Some people may be addictive to certain drugs, while others are addictive to certain foods or drinks, certain behaviours, or specific products. Some common addictions are-
Signs of addiction:
A person with addiction issues will show the following signs:
• Lack of self-control
• Lack of emotional response
• Increased desire for a behaviour or substance
• Restlessness, if the desires are not fulfilled
• Inability or difficulty staying away from the trigger
Over the course of time, addictions can impede your daily activities. People with addiction are prone to cycles of remission and relapse. If left unattended, such a condition can pose a serious threat to one’s physical as well as emotional well-being.
Behavioural therapy for Addiction-
All sorts of addiction are curable. One of the many treatment options for addiction is the Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).
• CBT is a combination of two therapeutic approaches- Behavioral therapy and Cognitive therapy. This involves the addicted person communicating with the therapist. This promotes healing and allows the addicted person to learn about healthy behaviour.
• Since CBT is a problem-oriented approach, this helps an individual to look at the dysfunctional patterns within one’s current life. The therapy works to develop constructive coping strategies within a person, thereby enhancing self-control.
Things that give you pleasure today, can actually be precarious to your health in the future. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is an effective method of dealing with addiction. Many support groups offer such therapeutic treatment for to people with addiction issues. Consult a therapist if you need help.
Schizophrenia is a neurological disorder that affects an individual’s ability to feel, think, or behave properly. Schizophrenia makes it hard for a person to tell reality from fantasy.
The symptoms of schizophrenia are:
Although one can control the symptoms of schizophrenia with antipsychotic drugs, therapy can drastically improve their quality of life. The therapy combines both counselling and medication. Several types of therapy can help a schizophrenic. The most commonly practised are:
This is a kind of interactive therapy session, which works only if a collective relation between the therapist and the individual suffering from schizophrenia is established. It is about analyzing the problem and setting goals to overcome it.
• The therapist focuses on the psychotic elements of schizophrenia (illusions and hallucinations) and helps the schizophrenic separate delusions and reality. It starts simply with learning to de-stress. CBT includes behavioural experiments, reality tests, cognitive restructuring.
• The schizophrenic is taught to avoid being confrontational and not to fear the psychotic experiences. Therapy helps strike a balance between the two extremes of psychotic and non-psychotic experiences.
Art Therapy acts as a unique medium of expression for a schizophrenic.
• A person suffering from schizophrenia often finds it difficult to express himself/herself. With the patient guidance of a therapist, the individual uses paint, clay or other materials to voice their thoughts, feelings and fears.
• Art therapy also incorporates music, poetry, drama (any art form that the schizophrenic is comfortable with). Art Therapy works in groups as well. Interacting in a group teaches social skills. Communicating with people suffering from similar problems helps them get a better perspective and reduces the symptoms associated with the condition.
Families are often confused about how to deal with the symptoms of schizophrenia. Family therapy is about establishing a bond between the schizophrenic and his/her family.
• Most importantly, bonding with the family helps gives an emotional boost to the individual. Knowing that she/he has the family’s love and support brings down hallucinatory episodes. Surveys suggest that family therapy helps improve the quality of life for a schizophrenic.
Therapy can help suppress the terrifying hallucinations and illusions and help a schizophrenic cope with his/her condition. However, at the end of the day, what a schizophrenic needs more than therapy and anti-psychotic drugs are your understanding and support.
The rise of social media along with the culture of digital editing has led to the escalating need to find validation in the society. This creates a huge population of individuals who feel compelled to see themselves in a harsh light. They suffer from low self-issues and undermine their own abilities. We immerse ourselves in the rat race of life. One-day we wake up to the realization of not being good enough.
You become prone to self-loathing and may develop the tendency to resort to substance abuse. Low self-esteem puts you into a vicious cycle of negativity. The inability to trust your own abilities destroys all prospects for you.
While poor self-image itself is not a disease, it can give rise to hordes of mental ailments. These include anxiety and depression. Therefore, if you are unable to find that inner strength to love yourself, therapy can show you the guiding light.
Reasons to Have Good Self-Image
Self-image is about feeling good about yourself, despite your looks or popularity. It is about accepting yourself with all your faults and strengths. If you are running out of reasons to love yourself, here are some reasons why you should.
• People see us, how we see ourselves. A good self-image helps us make a good impression in our personal as well as professional lives.
• People with good self-image tend to accomplish more
• The sad and low feeling goes away once we start valuing ourselves
• Low self-image affects the mind and body, exposing us to a range of disorders
Role of Therapy in Boosting Self-Image
• Therapy, especially Interpersonal Therapy, helps a person to open up. A trained professional shows acceptance without judgement. This helps the patient a lot.
• Low self-esteem and self-image issues often begin in childhood. The role of a therapist begins by identifying the root cause. This follows a process of reforming the hostile feelings.
• Low self-esteem makes a person extremely sensitive to harsh judgement. They criticize themselves in an attempt to cope. The therapist helps to reshape the insecurities into motivation.
• Mindfulness increases with therapy that improves productivity and boosts self-image.
• Improving self-esteem is a process that requires patience. Therapy keeps a person motivated and helps them explore new facets of themselves.
• Therapy can change the perspective of how people view themselves and the world.
People who suffer from low self-image issues recognize their pessimistic outlook of themselves as the truth. They criticize themselves in a manner they would never criticize others. Therapy holds a mirror to this attitude. It makes people recognize that the error is in the self-depreciating attitude. Sometimes therapy and a person who listens to you is all you need. Sometimes all we need to do is reach out to help us love ourselves again.
Bipolar disorder is a mental disease that is characterized by sudden changes in mood. People suffering from the condition may experience severe episodes called mania and the disorder can even cause depression among patients. Bipolar patients can also have difficulty maintaining relationships in their personal life, due to the unpredictable nature of their moods and behaviour.
Risk factors for bipolar disorder -
Bipolar disorder is associated with a number of risk factors such as the following:
• Genetics - People who have a family history of the condition. Particularly, if an individual’s siblings and parents suffer from the disorder, they face a greater risk.
• Environment - Stressful or traumatic events can lead to bipolar disorders as well. For instance, the death of a loved one may push people off the edge and lead to the mental affliction.
• Brain structure - People with certain brain structures may be at a higher risk from the bipolar disorder
Symptoms of bipolar disorder
Three main symptoms characterize bipolar disorder- mania, hypomania and depression. Each of these symptoms can lead to rapid mood swings in a person suffering from bipolar disorder.
• Mania -
Mania is an episode where the person suffering from the disorder starts to feel extremely high in terms of emotion. They become hyperactive, excited and even euphoric. During such an episode, people are also liable to engage in drug use.
• Hypomania -
Hypomania is similar to mania but is not as severe. Hypomania only affects people suffering from bipolar II disorder. Even though hypomania may not be noticeable to people around the patient, the person affected may notice an unexpected change in their moods.
• Depression -
Depression is just opposite of what mania is. It manifests a feeling of hopelessness, lethargy, remorse. Suicidal thoughts also accompany most cases of depression. Even though depression can be caused as a separate condition, people affected with bipolar disorder undergo periodic depression and mania, which can be even more difficult to handle.
Treatment for bipolar disorder
- Contemporary medicine does not have a cure for bipolar disorder as of now. However, with proper medication and therapy, a patient suffering from the mental illness can manage the symptoms and reduce the mood swings. Aside from medications, such as antipsychotics, antidepressants and mood stabilizers, patients may be prescribed psychotherapy as well.
- Cognitive behavioural therapy and psycho-education are vital parts of the treatment. The former is basically a talk therapy session between the psychologist and the patient, while the latter looks to educate the patient and their families about the bipolar disorder and ways of living with the condition.
- Creating a strict routine for daily life activities can also help deal with the disorder and reduce the symptoms.
Constant apprehension, unpleasant thoughts and the constant feeling of unpleasantness is something most people suffer from. It takes a toll on the quality of life, reduces productivity and gives rise to a wide spectrum of physical and mental ailments. Anxiety urges one to resort to substance abuse, trauma, and depression that can ultimately end in self-harm.
Anxiety disorder or this perpetual panic is among the most common psychological disorders that affect 1 in every 13 people worldwide. The cause of anxiety can be physical, psychological or situational and can vastly change the life of a person. It leaves one feeling powerless and needs to be addressed as soon as possible. It is crucial to understand that anxiety is not a personal flaw but a result of some external or internal stimulus.
Signs of anxiety
To treat anxiety, one must first be able to recognize it. The stigma and shame associated with mental disorders often force one to hide the signs of anxiety. You or your loved ones are victims of anxiety disorder if they show the following signs:
Treating anxiety disorder
• Anxiety disorder treatments have a high success rate, but 63% of the affected do not seek any help at all.
• There are various types of anxiety disorders that require a different approach for treatment. The types of anxiety disorder include General Anxiety Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder among others. This can affect anyone from any age group.
• Cognitive Behaviour Therapy is highly effective in treating anxiety by addressing the cause of anxiety and helping the patients to slowly change their thinking and behaviour pattern to feel better.
• Cognitive Behaviour Therapy allows the person suffering from anxiety disorders to keep a track of their improvement through records and encourages them to take steps towards faster recovery.
• 12 to 16 weeks of therapy can boost the self-confidence of individuals and empower them with coping skills for long-term benefit.
Anxiety is completely treatable if the person who is suffering can be provided with a proper support system, therapy and medication, if necessary. The only obstacle in the path of treating anxiety and related disorders is the social humiliation and shaming associated with mental health issues. We as a society need to extend hands of care and support to beat a disease that is spreading like malignancy and help the growing number of victims of anxiety disorders.
Relations are sweet, emerging, encouraging, and invigorating when there is love in them. Love brings with its feelings of caring for each other and sharing of emotions as well as things. But every relation may not have an element of love. Such relationships don’t last for long and become toxic in some time.
When a person is in a relationship, he/she don’t have any idea of where they are going. Everything seems rosy and the person may get carried away with love. But there may not be any love in the relationship at all. One needs to get rid of such relationships; the sooner the better. It is okay to get stuck in relationships, but if the person thinks that it is not going anywhere, he/she needs to cut it short. There is always a new opportunity at the end of a dark tunnel. But how does one know which relationship is toxic and which is not? Here is a guide on toxic relations.
If the person has seen his/her partner become aggressive at times, but are taking it lightly, think again. The person needs to tell his/her partner that this is not a way to talk. If he/she is still getting more aggressive, the person is no longer comfortable with such partners. One has lost the bond that makes up a relationship. It is better to give it a miss.
To err is human, but to blame the partner for a fault of one’s own is engaging in a blame game. Jealousy too may have its part in the relationship. However, if one is experiencing excessive jealousy on the part of a lover, it is not okay. It erodes the trust that is paramount in a relation. People don’t have anything to hold on to in this relationship. Let us give it a miss.\
Criticizing at Every Other Step
Nobody is perfect, but partners need to learn how to live with the imperfections of each other. It helps them to bond better and grow the feeling of love between them. If partners are criticizing every other step, one knows it; the love has gone in thin air. It has become a toxic relationship now. Had it been a positive criticism that helped get a step closer to perfection, one would have loved it. In a toxic relationship, criticism is done to express contempt for the partner, and not otherwise. There is no point sticking to such relations. It may well be a waste of time.
Arguing, But Not Communicating
If both the partners are yelling over each other and it is not getting anywhere, then the person is in a toxic relationship. In such a relationship, the persons are not in a state to communicate with each other effectively. The toxic relationship will not offer that person much. Don’t get upset and argue. Rather, cheer up and set on to forge a new relationship.
People may suffer depression, lose their self-confidence, don’t trust other person, or may destroy personality; in such cases one needs to visit a counsellor. Counselling may help the person to get out of the toxic relationships and move on in life happily and effectively.
Financial issues can crop up between a couple, and if not sorted out in time, it has the potential to disrupt marital bliss. From the 19 th century to the 21 st century, the financial dependence of women on men has had a gradual transformation to financial independence. Yet financial issues between couples have not ebbed.
Having Different Spending and Saving Habits
The most common thread of discord among couples relates to spending habits. Sometimes it is the woman who likes to splurge on clothes and accessories, while the man likes to save every penny. Sometimes it is the man who likes to spend on booze and gambling and the woman likes to save. Sometimes both of them may be splurging on the stuff of their liking and they blame each other for not saving enough.
Most people live with loans, be it credit card loans, car loans, home loans or something else. As couples discuss each other’s debt position, sparks may start flying if one has an awful record of taking loans and repayments.
Most often, while discussing financial matters, couples don’t take into consideration each other’s obligations. If one has inherited a debt from his/her late parents, one may have to repay it. This is an obligation that people have to meet if they don’t want to let go of the property which had been mortgaged to secure the loan. However, the wife may not try to understand this obligation on her husband’s part. Sparks may fly
between those couples regarding such financial obligations.
Power play between partners can arise when one earns and the other does not. It may also arise when one of the partners does not have a job or one earns considerably more than the other. If one of the partners hails from a rich family and the other has a modest financial background, it may also cause power play between them. In all these cases, one with more income, a rich family background or the sole earning member may want to dictate spending or saving terms. This can cause friction between the partners.
Expenditure Related to Children
Having children is bliss, but raising them is expensive. It can cause friction between the partners if one wants to have more children than the other. If one partner wants two or more children, but the other is worried about the cost of raising more than one child, it may cause a squabble between them. At the end of the day, it boils down to being a financial issue.
Caring for Extended Family
One may need to take a loan to provide medical aid to his/her parents or to help his/her brother who has lost his job. However, the other partner may be upset with that person for this. It may result in bickering.
Whatever the case might be, it is important for partners to resolve any financial issue that may arise. And in case they are not able to resolve it themselves, they can get in touch with an experienced Psychologist to get a professional resolution.
Everyone feels anxious at some point of time or another. However, simply feeling anxious is quite different from what people with anxiety disorder feel on a daily basis. A number of conditions can be termed as anxiety disorders and all of them have an underlying trigger, which causes the nervousness, fear and terror, in certain situations.
However, people often disregard anxiety disorders as simple nervousness. Here are some reasons why anxiety disorders can be extremely serious and warrant immediate attention.
• Anxiety can cause chest pains
Anxiety disorders can cause severe chest pains in people who do not receive treatment for the condition. Over time, anxiety can lead to a condition known as coronary ischemia, which is responsible for the tightness in the chest. Apart from the chest pains, the anxiety can also cause back and headaches.
• Anxiety can lead to heart disease
People suffering from anxiety disorders are also much more likely to develop increased heart rate. Heart attack and hypertension risks also increase with the continuous anxiety. A survey suggests that anxiety increases the chances of death from heart-related disorders by a whopping 48%.
• Development of depression
Anxiety disorders are often so severe that it prevents people from having a good night’s sleep. The constant fear and tension can be difficult to bear. Additionally, if your anxiety results from a deep-rooted social phobia, you may also be unable to interact and mix with people around you, leading you to become isolated. All of these factors can cause depression, which may require separate treatment.
• Inability to concentrate
Since the mind is constantly focused on the reason for the anxiety, patients may be unable to focus on the day-to-day happenings around them. For instance, a student may be unable to study, while an employee will be unable to deliver work properly due to the lack of concentration.
Therefore, it is evident that anxiety disorders can play spoilsport with your life, which is why you need to seek proper treatment for the condition and not disregard the problem. While there are certain medications to control your anxiety attacks, most doctors these days recommend therapeutic treatment to help you cope with the condition.
In today’s times, depression has spread within the society like an epidemic. People with depression wake up feeling low, spend their day drowning in anxiety and end the day without any hopes for the future. Although the symptoms may be different, children are not safe from the clutches of depression either. It is more difficult for them to express their anxiety and helplessness due to their lack of understanding of the concept of depression.
Five percent of the children suffer from depression worldwide. If not taken care of, the depression can spiral out of control and potentially ruin the prospects of the child as adults. If you start noticing your child slowly retreating into their own world or unable to control their emotions, you must evaluate if your child is suffering from depression and take steps to help them.
Signs of depression in children:
The role of parents in helping a child overcome depression is of primary importance. While occasional bouts of feeling low and cranky is a part of growing up, extended periods of certain signs are cause for concern. They include:
• Being aggressive, sad or unhappy most of the time
• Saying negative things about themselves
• Lack of energy and interest in games
• Anxiety, irritability, and fear of social situations
• Disrupted dietary patterns
• Self-harming tendencies
Coping with depression
• It is important to notice unnatural behaviour in children and talking to them about it in a patient, non-judgemental and understanding manner. If the child is unwilling to talk, respect their space and broach the subject later.
• Depression doesn’t indicate the parents are failing in their roles. The cause of depression can be anything from genetic vulnerability to physical health and the immediate environment. The best course of action is addressing the cause and helping the child overcome depression.
• Often it is best to seek the professional help of a therapist or counsellor the child trusts. Forms of therapy including Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and Interpersonal Psychotherapy can help the child through play therapy, family therapy, and peer therapy.
• Giving the child a conducive atmosphere at home and in school is crucial. You might want to explore the possibilities of bullies or other factors in school, especially if your child is making excuses to not attend school and has deteriorating grades.
• Invest more time in their daily activities and engage them in activities of their choice to relieve their stress and channel their anxiety better.
The average age of appearance of depression in a child is progressively falling lower. In the face of such times, the child needs the parents more than ever to feel safe. It is easy for parents to deny depression in their children as the other alternative is heart-breaking. However, early diagnosis and intervention help the child to combat depression more effectively. A combination of medication, therapy, and support of the family is the best way of helping a child deal with depression and become a happier and successful adult.