Articles

April 14th, 2021

Online continuing education gets mixed reviews

By Catherine Robertson Souter

Just over one year ago, the whole world shut down. People stopped going to work, to school, to restaurants and movie theatres. There are some Americans who have still not gone back to doctors, dentists, or therapy sessions, at least not in person. For those in the working world who are lucky to still have jobs, things did not shut down so much as move online. A new verb, “to Zoom,” became common. Individuals slowly figured out where the mute button was and to remember to shut the door and to hide the dog’s squeaky toy before logging on. As [More]

April 13th, 2021

Massachusetts launches schools’ initiative to address mental health

By Phyllis Hanlon

Throughout the last year, schooling has looked significantly different than in any other year. The spread of COVID-19 prompted the state to temporarily suspend in-classroom learning. In some cases, schools opened and then shuttered their doors shortly after as cases of the virus increased. Although some in-person learning has resumed, students have the option of remaining remote or attending school in a hybrid model. This February in Massachusetts, a new initiative was launched to address the mental health issues that might arise for students during the current pandemic. School principals and administrators, teachers, guidance, and adjustment counselors will attend virtual [More]

April 13th, 2021

COVID-19 is impacting pediatric mental health

By Phyllis Hanlon

Research clearly demonstrates that the pandemic is having a significant negative effect on the younger generation. A November 2020 article, “Impact of COVID-19 and lockdown on mental health of children and adolescents: A narrative review with recommendations,” found both short-term and long-term “psychosocial and mental health implications” in this population. The article was published in Psychiatry Research. The authors noted that severity of the impact is subject to certain vulnerability factors including developmental age, educational status, pre-existing mental health conditions, low economic status, and quarantine because of or fear of infection. The increase in requests for treatment and lengthy wait [More]

April 13th, 2021

Drug overdoses rise but NH’s death rate dips slightly

By Catherine Robertson Souter

The Covid-19 pandemic has caused more than half a million deaths in the United States. Sadly, those direct results of the virus may not tell the whole story. Across the United States, drug overdose deaths increased nearly 20 percent in the 12-month period ending last June, with a noticeable spike occurring during the early months of the Covid-19 shutdown. These figures, provided by the Centers for Disease Control, represented the highest number of fatal overdoses ever recorded in the U.S. in a single year. Throughout New England, the rates of death have seen an increase in the past year in [More]

April 13th, 2021

Providers object to bill removing audio-only option

By Catherine Robertson Souter

In July of 2020, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu signed a bill into law that required insurance companies to cover telemedicine at equal rates to in-person treatment. The move was lauded by both health care and mental health care professionals as a positive step toward expanding services, especially in remote areas where access may be more limited. This year, one of that bill’s original sponsors, Jess Edwards (R-Rockingham 4), joined forces with two other Republican representatives to sponsor a bill that will remove the parity and audio-only pieces of the 2020 law. “This past summer, the Senate inserted a provision [More]

April 13th, 2021

College students feel the mental health toll of pandemic

By Eileen Weber

In the past year, the pandemic has taken a significant mental and emotional toll. Mask wearing, social distancing, isolation, and quarantining are practically second nature. And, none of this is lost on college students who have had a very different school experience since last March. Jacqueline Alvarez, Ph.D, associate dean and director of the counseling center at Amherst College in Amherst, Mass., acknowledged increased depression and anxiety in college students has been a top concern for the past several years and it’s no different this year. But as she put it, “it’s complicated.” “Students have to carry their academic load [More]

April 13th, 2021

Parenting Education: How to help your children after trauma

By New England Psychologist Staff

Some basics for managing trauma in your child: In some ways, helping children recover from traumatic experiences, can be simple. In other ways, the healing process can seem endless and grueling. In order to make this process doable, let’s discuss some basic concepts you can incorporate from the get go. • Physical contact – Be affectionate with your child. This will help him/her feel safe. • Daily Routines – Structure during times of stress is very healing. Structure provides a sense of security. When everything feels out of control, having structure provides an anchor for the child. • Frequent soothing and reassurance – [More]

April 12th, 2021

What I learned on the Mount Misery Trail

By Alan Bodnar Ph.D.

It was one of those perfect winter days, cold and clear with the bluest of blue skies above six inches of blindingly white snow that blanketed the frozen pond, the trail through the pines and the meadow below. The trail skirted the base of a small hill, Mount Misery, which gives its name to this reservation where Thoreau used to amble on excursions from his cabin at Walden Pond. My wife and I were ambling in his footsteps, enjoying the beauty of nature and taking photos to inspire her landscape paintings. If ever there was a time and place to [More]

April 12th, 2021

Survey: Households with children reported feeling down, depressed, or hopeless

By Eileen Weber

Since last March, feelings of hopelessness, loneliness, and isolation are simply commonplace. What initially was presumed to be a shutdown for a few weeks has been prolonged into a year. People of all ages are experiencing the effects of the lack of normalcy. But children, adolescents, and young adults in particular are showing the strain. In an American Medical Association podcast in mid-February, Patrice Harris, M.D., M.A., discussed the mental health issues resulting from the pandemic. In her estimation, it’s necessary to have serious conversations—and serious action—about what she called “COVID fatigue” or “hitting the wall.” She considered it a [More]

April 12th, 2021

Five ways professionals can cope with suicide

By New England Psychologist Staff

Professionals who work in the mental health field are not immune to loss by suicide. In fact, they and professionals in every field can succumb to suicidal thoughts themselves or lose patients or family members they are trying to help. The aftermath is often filled with additional burdens centering around their career role. Counselors, ministers, and others may or may not have specialized training or experience in this area but often feel they should have been able to help. This is a common agony before and after suicide, but when you are responsible for care and aware of this kind [More]

window.dojoRequire(["mojo/signup-forms/Loader"], function(L) { L.start({"baseUrl":"mc.us19.list-manage.com","uuid":"322e35fa4c6f5b901ca93b808","lid":"51a8cbcdae","uniqueMethods":true}) })