ADHD: Stimulant Drug Abuse

By: Nicole Bieniasz

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a very common disorder that is associated with symptoms of inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. The most effective way of managing ADHD symptoms is through the intake of stimulants, typically known as Adderall, Vyvanse, or Concerta. As diagnosis of ADHD increase, the prescription of these stimulant drugs increases as well. Since ADHD is difficult to diagnose and understand, many individuals seek this opportunity to imitate symptoms of ADHD in order to retrieve stimulant prescriptions and abuse their use. The abuse of adderall by college students has always been common, but now stimulant abuse is entering the workplace as well. As the demands of jobs and personal lives increase, stimulants are being used to help people enhance productivity. Although this may sound ideal, taking stimulants when not necessary can lead to major health problems. The use of stimulants can easily turn into an addiction, where withdrawal from the drug can cause fatigue, depression, and disturbed sleep patterns. Use of high dosage of such drugs can also lead into very serious cardiovascular problems such as strokes. Various complications are likely to occur if stimulant drugs are being abused and taken with the oversight of a doctor.

Despite the abuse, those who are prescribed medication for ADHD or ADD have a very positive experience. With the appropriate dosage of medication, those who suffer from ADHD experience a reduced amount of fidgeting, impulsivity, and other hyperactive behaviors. The symptoms of ADHD lessen because stimulants allow brain chemicals to increase, such as dopamine and norepinephrine, producing a focused and calmed mindset. The benefits of these drugs are prominent when taken appropriately as directed by doctor. It is very important to understand how medications work and when they should and should not be used.

If you or a loved one live in Manhattan or Bergen County New Jersey and might be suffering from drug abuse, the psychiatrist, psychologists, psychiatric nurse practitioners and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling and Psychological Services can assist you. Contact our Bergen County, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices of psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment. Visit http://www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information.

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Traumatic Brain Injury: Signs of Depression

Traumatic Brain Injury“Brain Injury Can Change Your Life”

By: Jessica Ortega

The majority of survivors of moderate and severe traumatic brain injuries (TBI) have significant long-term neurobehavioral changes and increased rates of psychiatric illness. Cognitive deficits are the most common complaints of traumatic brain injury survivors. However, many of these injured individuals may not be aware of behavioral or emotional changes because they are focused on the changes in more concrete domains such as motor functioning. This can be devastating for both the injured person and the caregivers.

Over half of people who have suffered a traumatic brain injury experience depression. Physical changes in the brain due to injury and emotional response to injury can leave you struggling to adjust. Some symptoms of depression are:

  • Feeling down, sad, or hopeless
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in usual activities
  • Feeling worthless, misunderstood, lonely and frustrated
  • Disturbed sleep patterns and changes in appetite
  • Concentration difficulties
  • Tiredness and a lack of energy
  • Thoughts of death or suicide

Therapy can help you recover emotionally, if you are concerned that you or anyone you care about may be struggling with depression after suffering a traumatic brain injury, the licensed counselors and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling and Psychotherapy can assist you in feeling better about the present and hopeful about the future. Contact our Bergen County, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices of psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists at (201)368-3700 or (212)722-1920 to set up an appointment. Visit http://www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information.

Substance Abuse and Adolescents

Substance abuse in adolescents often accompanies psychological problems. Despite common perception, not all adolescents drink or smoke spot. Many popular, social and academically successful teenagers enjoy socializing without resorting to drug abusive behavior (including alcohol and cigarettes). In fact, the more confident and intelligent ones recognize the negative consequences of addiction and abstain when approached by their addicted peers.
So when your teen or college student says, “everyone’s doing it,” don’t believe them!! It’s just an excuse. But most importantly, look at your own behavior and the behavior of others in your household. Does anyone drink? Smoke? Take pain killers? Teenagers usually do what we do, not what we say. Set a good example and they will follow.
If you or a loved one live in Manhattan or Bergen County New Jersey and might be experiencing substance abuse, the psychiatrists, psychologists, psychiatric nurse practitioners or psychotherapists at Arista Counseling can assist you. Contact our Bergen County, NJ or Manhattan offices of psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment.  Visit http://www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information

Bipolar Disorder is often Diagnosed after a Failed Trial with Anti-Depressant Medication

By: Judy Gurfein

Often failure of a depressed individual to respond to antidepressant medication signals that the patient is actually suffering from the depressive stage of a bipolar disorder. When a patient who is depressed takes an antidepressant medication, the patient usually reports less depression, increased motivation, improved mood, and reduced anxiety. However, if the patient actually has bipolar disorder and appears to be depressed because he or she is in the depressed phase of a bipolar disorder, the antidepressant will often result in increased anxiety and increased agitation, with no improvement in depressive symptoms. This should be a signal that the patient probably has bipolar disorder and not unipolar depression. Appropriate medication should then be prescribed which will reduce the depressive symptoms but which will not increase agitation, anger or other symptoms of mania.

 

If you or a loved one live in Manhattan or Bergen County New Jersey and might be suffering from bipolar disorder or depression, the psychiatrists, psychologists, psychiatric nurse practitioners or psychotherapists at Arista Counseling can assist you. Contact our Bergen County, NJ or Manhattan offices of psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment.  Visit http://www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information

Anti-Depressant Medication and Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar Disorder is a difficult diagnosis to make at any age. In childhood, it is often misdiagnosed as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) or Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD). It is often difficult to diagnose bipolar disorder at any age in particular, because the first episode often appears as depression. Should an episode of depression occur before the age of 30, this should be considered.

Failure of symptoms of depression to improve with antidepressant medication might indicate that the individual may actually be suffering from bipolar disorder and not a unipolar depression (Major Depressive Disorder). After several trials of antidepressants, consideration should be given to medications used for bipolar disorder. Responses to these medications often help make the proper diagnosis.

If you or a loved one live in Manhattan or Bergen County New Jersey and might be suffering from bipolar disorder or depression, the psychiatrists, psychologists, psychiatric nurse practitioners or psychotherapists at Arista Counseling can assist you. Contact our Bergen County, NJ or Manhattan offices of psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment.  Visit http://www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information

Bipolar Depression vs. Depression: Accurate Diagnosis

Bipolar Disorder is a difficult diagnosis to make at any age. In childhood it is often misdiagnosed as Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD) or Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD). It is often difficult to diagnose bipolar disorder at any age in particular, because the first episode often appears as depression. Should an episode of depression occur before the age of 30, it is particularly important to consider that it might be the depressive phase of a bipolar condition and not merely unipolar depression. According to Dr. Henry A. Nasrallah, paying close attention to the person’s history of mood swings, hypomanic symptoms, and family history can be very helpful in arriving at the correct diagnosis. Since anti-depressant medication can precipitate a manic episode, accurate diagnosis is very important.

If you or a loved one live in Manhattan or Bergen County New Jersey and might be suffering from bipolar disorder or depression, the psychiatrists, psychologists, psychiatric nurse practitioners or psychotherapists at Arista Counseling can assist you. Contact our Bergen County, NJ or Manhattan offices of psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment.  Visit http://www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information.

Current Psychiatry, April 2015, Volume 14, No. 4, S4, Sups often helps make the proper diagnosis.Iplement