Autism and Aggression 10/22/2020

With autism currently affecting nearly 2 in every 100 people to some degree or another, most healthcare providers will be treating individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) at some point in time. Particularly for those more significantly affected, the issue of agitated and aggressive outbursts is often a major concern, though even in those with […]

Perchance to Sleep: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia 10/15/2020

One of the primary presenting complaints in the primary care setting is insomnia. It can be a solitary presenting symptom or it can be part of a constellation of symptoms related to a medical cause or mood or anxiety disorder. A good assessment of onset, extent, duration, onset, severity, triggers of the sleep problem, in […]

Ways to Say “No” Nicely 10/1/2020

Telling patients “no” is not always easy.  Primary care physicians (PCPs) especially know this all too well. In addition to “keeping the peace” with patients and avoiding conflict, providers may feel pressure to obtain better patient satisfaction scores, knowing that their status and/or compensation, in part, may be linked to higher scores. How do you […]

Understanding Different Mental Health Therapies 9/25/2020

Psychotherapy is a mainstay treatment for many mental health conditions. In the primary care setting, it is helpful to have a basic understanding of the common therapies that might be recommended to help guide patients as they are accessing treatment. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): This is one of the most common types of psychotherapy and […]

Substance Abuse in the time of the Coronavirus Pandemic 9/18/2020

The far-reaching effects of the coronavirus pandemic continues to present challenges to primary care and mental health providers. Depression and anxiety have been predictably impacted by isolation and perceived health risks that our patients are experiencing. It has become more evident as time has passed, that people struggling with substance abuse are at higher risk […]

Adolescent Self-Harm & Suicide Risk: Management Strategies 9/10/2020

Self-induced harm is common among adolescents and is a significant, albeit infrequent, risk factor for suicide (Gromatsky et al., 2020).   While most youth suicides do not occur in the context of a youth with self-harm behavior, a modest percentage may progress to being at higher risk. This said, both for relieve of their underlying distress […]

Behavior Modification as a Tool 9/3/2020

Among all the acronyms and differently named psychosocial support methodologies in use for helping families and kids, Behavior Management (B-Mod) is a time-tested tool to improve interactional conflicts in human groups. In pediatrics, B-Mod, can provide families opportunities to resolve conflicts and advance healthier psychosocial functioning. When applied to parenting, the technique uses positive reinforcements […]

Racism and Child Mental Health 8/27/2020

As the frontline of healthcare, the primary care clinic can play an important role in assuring equal access to care for all our kids and families. The following materials highlight the In 2019, the American Academy of Pediatrics published a policy statement on the “The Impact of Racism on Child and Adolescent Health” highlighting the […]

Kleptomania 8/20/2020

Although infrequently diagnosed and, at times, a subject of contention, kleptomania is one of the impulse control disorder diagnoses included in the DSM-5 that is part of the common lexicon. While the impulse to steal or appropriate objects that are not ours is a common enough human tendency, the distinguishing feature of the disorder as […]

Brief Psychotherapeutic Interventions for Pediatric Anxiety 8/13/2020

Pediatric Anxiety is one of the most common mental health challenges a child and their family can face. One study estimated a 7% prevalence of diagnosed anxiety disorder in children from 3-17 and a lifetime prevalence of 31.9% (Ghandour et al, 2019). Presumably, the earlier significant anxiety challenges can be addressed, the fewer immediate consequences […]