Marijuana Use: The Tell Tale Signs

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Marijuana Use: The Tell Tale Signs

Daniela Chica

Marijuana use may have become a common activity in the United States in the past decade, however people still have a tough time deciphering whether or not someone they know is under the influence of the drug. Because the effects of the drug vary based on how much THC the marijuana contains, it can be difficult to spot whether or not the person is under the influence of marijuana. Some common symptoms to look out for are:

  • Dizziness and/or trouble walking
  • Bloodshot or red eyes
  • Sleepiness as time goes by
  • Person giggles a lot or finds trivial things funny
  • Remembering things that just happened is troublesome for the person

While the symptoms of the drug may be less severe, depending on the amount of THC, than other controlled substances or narcotics, the effects of marijuana can still impair a person’s ability to make clear decisions, view the world clearly and move about their normal day. Once under the influence of marijuana, people should not operate machinery or vehicles of any kind or should not engage in other dangerous activity like further drug and alcohol consumption. Other factors to look out for are withdrawal symptoms often linked to marijuana use such as depression, anxiety, hostility and fatigue.

If you or someone you know has a drug addiction of any kind, the psychologists at Arista Counseling and Psychotherapy can help you. For more information regarding our services, please contact psychotherapy offices in New York or New Jersey to talk to one of our licensed professional psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling & Psychotherapy. Contact our Paramus, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices respectively, at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment. For more information, visit http://www.counselingpsychotherapynjny.com/.

Source:

https://www.psychologytoday.com/conditions/cannabismarijuana

 

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Panic Disorder: The Basics

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Panic Disorder: The Basics

Daniela Chica

Although there are no known definitive causes of panic disorder, it is a common illness among Americans. People with panic disorder experience short or long spans of time of sheer panic or they experience a panic attack. Although there are multiple types of experiences that can elicit fear, people with the disorder feel fear and panic even when there is no real danger. More women experience panic disorder than men; however it affects each gender in the same way. Often times the illness is so debilitating, that it doesn’t allow for the completion of normal tasks like driving or going to the grocery store.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, people with panic disorder experience:

  • Sudden and repeated panic attacks of overwhelming anxiety and fear
  • A feeling of being out of control, or a fear of death or impending doom during a panic attack
  • Physical symptoms during a panic attack, such as a pounding or racing heart, sweating, chills, trembling, breathing problems, weakness or dizziness, tingly or numb hands, chest pain, stomach pain, and nausea
  • An intense worry about when the next panic attack will happen
  • A fear or avoidance of places where panic attacks have occurred in the past

If you or someone you know experiences panic attacks or has problems with anxiety, contact our psychotherapy offices in New York or New Jersey to talk to one of our licensed professional psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling & Psychotherapy. Contact our Paramus, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices respectively, at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment. For more information, visit http://www.counselingpsychotherapynjny.com/.

Conversion Disorder

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Conversion Disorder

By: Daniela Chica

Conversion disorder is characterized by psychological problems that show up as physical symptoms. The disorder occurs after a physical or psychologically stressful event triggers the onset of a physical symptom. Someone who has been in a car crash may feel as if their leg is paralyzed when indeed they have no physical ailments. Although there is no known cause for conversion disorder, researchers believe that the areas of the brain connected to the control of muscles and senses play a role in the progression of the disorder. Some common symptoms of the disorder are:

  • Weakness and paralysis of single or multiple limbs
  • Shaking and/or difficulty walking and swallowing
  • Balance and equilibrium deficits
  • Unresponsiveness for varying periods of time
  • Seizures and/or convulsions

Although conversion disorder is more common in females than males, both sexes experience similar symptoms and risk factors. Some of the risk factors include but are not limited to:

  • Experiencing a stressful event or trauma
  • Having a pre-existing mental health condition such as anxiety or a personality disorder
  • Having a family member that has conversion disorder

If you or someone you know has conversion disorder and needs help, please contact our psychotherapy offices in New York or New Jersey to talk to one of our licensed professional psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling & Psychotherapy. Contact our Paramus, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices respectively, at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment. For more information, visit http://www.counselingpsychotherapynjny.com/.

Source:

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/conversion-disorder/basics/definition/con-20029533

Why Is Sleep So Important?

Why Is Sleep So Important?

By Daisy Lee

When we haven’t had a good night’s sleep, we often feel groggy and disoriented in the morning. Oftentimes, it feels like we haven’t slept at all. Getting enough sleep every night is essential to one’s health, both mental and physical, and contributes to one’s overall state of well-being.

Sleep has been proven time and time again to improve overall wellness and quality of life. Without it, humans and any other living, breathing creatures can’t survive. A good, sound night’s sleep ranging from around 7 to 9 hours is vital for maximum health and performance in life. A few benefits of sleep include:

  • Improved memory
  • Improved attention and concentration
  • Faster reaction time
  • Higher school performance
  • Decreased likelihood of accidents
  • Weight loss
  • Decreased risk of depression
  • Decreased likelihood of illness

Make sure to get your 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night for your best physical and mental condition. If you or someone you know is having sleep issues, speak with one of our licensed professional psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and psychotherapists. Contact us at our Paramus, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 respectively to set up an appointment. For more information, visit http://www.counselingpsychotherapynjny.com/.

Source: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-teenage-mind/201202/why-sleep-is-important

Photo: http://www.consciouslivingtv.com

Child Neglect

Child Neglect

By: Christina Mesa

Child Neglect occurs when a parent, guardian, or caregiver intentionally or irresponsibly does not provide for the basic needs of a child.  Neglect is a different form of child abuse as the former is the lack of action while the latter is a form of action.  Signs of neglect in a  child include frequent absences from school, stealing food, untreated illnesses and physical injuries, ill-fitting clothes, or the child is unsupervised often.  Child neglect is hard to detect oftentimes, especially once the child has reached their teenage years.

There are several different types of child neglect:

  • Physical neglect is the failure to provide food, shelter, or appropriate supervision
  • Medical neglect is the failure to provide proper medical or mental health treatment
  • Education neglect occurs when one fails to provide the proper education or special education treatment for a child
  • Emotional neglect is the failure to provide psychological care or inattention to a child’s emotional needs
  • Abandonment is a type of neglect in which the identity or location of the parent or guardian is unknown, or the child has been left alone in serious circumstances where they suffer harms, or the parent has failed to maintain contact with the child over a specific period of time

If a loved one or a child you known appears to be suffering from neglect, the licensed psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling and Psychotherapy can assist you.  Contact our Paramus, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices respectively at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment.  For more information, visit http://www.counselingpsychotherapynjny.com/

Information: http://www/childwelfare.gov/pubPDFs/whatiscan.pdf

 

 

 

Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)

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Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)

By Emily Aranda

Body Dysmorphic Disorder is defined as a persistent and intrusive fixation with an imagined or highly exaggerated imperfection in physical appearance. The flaw as perceived by one with BDD causes significant emotional distress and difficulties in day to day functioning. An individual with BDD may avoid social settings that require certain attire such as bathing suits or form fitting clothing. Those with BDD are highly distressed by their perceived imperfection and may suffer from social impairment, such as a desire to be alone in order to hide their bodies from others. Body Dysmorphic Disorder affects men and women indiscriminately, developing most often in adolescents and teens.

The symptoms of Body Dysmorphic Disorder are as follows:

  • Camouflaging – wearing baggy clothing, posing in certain body positions, wearing excessive makeup, etc. in order to hide the perceived body inadequacy
  • Seeking surgery/diet pills
  • Excessive grooming
  • Excessive exercise
  • Frequently checking themselves in the mirror
  • Avoiding catching their reflection in the mirror
  • Changing outfits very often

If you or someone you know may have Body Dysmorphic Disorder, contact our psychotherapy offices in New York or New Jersey to talk to one of our licensed professional psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling & Psychotherapy. Contact our Paramus, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices respectively, at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment. For more information, visit http://www.counselingpsychotherapynjny.com/.

Sources: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1414653/  https://www.adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/related-illnesses/other-related-conditions/body-dysmorphic-disorder-bdd

Fighting Out-Group Bias

Fighting Out-Group Bias

By Sam Reiner

I want to talk about a game that came out around 2 years ago and I think it is one of the most important things in recent memory. I want to talk about Undertale. In order to understand why exactly it is so important I have to explain how our brains work at identifying people. When interacting with people we are usually dealing with the Social Anthropological Principle of Out-Group Homogeneity Bias, which is that we tend to view people of other groups as more similar than those in our own group. To simplify, we generalize or stereotype groups of people we are not familiar with. This is a big reason why stereotypes and prejudices exist but why would we do this to ourselves? Well a prevailing anthropological theory states that this happens as a way to preserve our identity. Every single human is a complicated mix of likes, dislikes, fears, experiences, and beliefs which makes it difficult to actually describe what makes you “You.” Think about every time you’re asked to tell someone about yourself and you struggle to answer, it’s exactly the same thing. So instead of defining ourselves by what we are, the out-group bias leads us to identify by what we are not. We are not Them. We subconsciously draw a very clear line in the sand to say this is who I am and I would never be one of those people.

So how does this connect back to Undertale? Well this game is determined to force players to fight out-group homogeneity bias. It’s even the main premise of the game, Humans vs. Monsters, Us vs. Them. In any other game monsters are simply that, monsters. Just obstacles for the player to overcome in your quest to rescue the princess and save the world. In Undertale however, it’s a different story. Creator of Undertale, Toby Fox, went on record to say that he wanted every “enemy” in the game to have their own distinct personality. They range from grunts and bosses to characters like Sans, Alphys, Torial, Froggit, all with their own hopes dreams fears and insecurities. This is probably one of the most genius parts of the game’s design as even though they are labeled as “monsters,” they are so much more.

That is why this $10 game is so important, it’s message. The message that nothing should be judged or hated because of a label and that you should always try to find the peaceful resolution. In fact, Undertale is what taught millions of people the meaning of the word pacifism, which is no exaggeration. Global search trends on Google show a huge spike in the number of people who searched the word pacifism and pacifist around Undertale’s release. For the first time in what feels like forever, people were talking about peaceful resolutions to conflict all because of a video game. It’s also important to remember about Undertale is that people over funded it on Kickstarter, a game that pitched itself as “a game where no one has to get hurt.” During a time where people are actively talking about building walls, it is important and comforting to know that there is a great number who care about bringing people together despite their differences.

If you or someone you know feels depressed or alone contact our psychotherapy offices in New York or New Jersey to talk to one of our licensed professional psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling & Psychotherapy. Contact our Paramus, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices respectively, at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment. For more information, visit http://www.counselingpsychotherapynjny.com/

Sources: http://changingminds.org/explanations/theories/out-group_homogeneity.htm

Postpartum Depression

Postpartum Depression

Author: Christina Mesa

Childbirth can be accompanied by a mix of emotions, but many women do not expect to be depressed. According to National Institute of Mental Health, Postpartum depression is experienced by around 15% of women who give birth, from all ages, races, ethnicities, and economic statuses.  If you are experiencing PPD, you are not alone.  Postpartum depression is a mood disorder that can affect women after childbirth.  Feelings of sadness, anxiety, and exhaustion may accompany symptoms of postpartum depression and may contribute to a woman’s inability to tend to the needs of herself and her family.  There is no particular cause for PPD, as it may result from a variety of different factors.  After a woman gives birth, her levels of estrogen and progesterone drop rapidly which can cause chemical changes in her brain.  This change can lead to mood swings.  New mothers may also be sleep deprived, which may lead to symptoms of PPD.

Symptoms include:

  • Having trouble bonding or forming an emotional attachment with her baby
  • Persistently doubting her ability to care for her baby
  • Thinking about harming herself or her baby
  • Having trouble concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions
  • Suffering from physical aches and pains, including frequent headaches, stomach problems, and muscle pain
  • Withdrawing from or avoiding friends and family

There are several risk factors that may put some women at a greater risk for postpartum depression.

Risk Factors include:

  • Symptoms of depression during or after previous pregnancy
  • A stressful life event during or after giving birth e.g. Death of loved one, job loss, domestic violence
  • mixed feelings about the pregnancy
  • alcohol or drug abuse problems

If you or a loved one appears to be suffering from postpartum depression, licensed psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling & Psychotherapy can assist you. Contact our Paramus, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices respectively, at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment.  For more information, visit http://www.counselingpsychotherapynjny.com/