As quarantine, social distancing, and remote learning continue on into the winter months, it can be difficult to know how to continue to support children through the change and unstable times. Maryland schools are seeing a shift back to remote learning, which may reignite negative emotions, depression stints, and anxiety in kids and teens.
As a parent, teacher, or caregiver, you may be wondering how you can best support the children in your care during this difficult time. While child counselors are always available for child therapy in Ellicott City at The Family Center, offering both in-person and telehealth therapy, there are things you can do at home to help support your kids or students and help them maintain their mental health.
Right now is a difficult time for parents and families. In addition to managing a change in work routines, loss of income, and a general uprooting of lifestyle, parents also have to incorporate remote learning or homeschool programs into their day-to-day for their children. With no clear expectation of when things will return to “normal”, the 2020-21 school year feels fraught with tension and frustration.
We’ve put together our top seven tips to help manage remote learning or homeschool programs this Fall. Although these tips are not comprehensive of the limitless possibilities you can opt for, they will help you manage the day-to-day schooling, working, and home maintenance. As always, you can give any one of our professionals a call to schedule an appointment to get an extra boost of support, whether for you or your children, to help during this time.
5 Things to Know If Your Child Needs Mental Health Services
March 9th 2020
There has always been a stigma around mental health services in the United States. The stigma is worse when it is a child seeking out help.
Child therapy and child counselors can improve a child’s mental health and give children a better life. We worked with our top child therapists to give you a list of 5 things to know when your child is going to therapy or using mental health services.
There is a quote often attributed to Benjamin Franklin that, “Nothing can as certain as death and taxes.” Franklin’s wry sense of humor taps into the notion that certain elements of life are inescapable.
While we could add many inevitable events to Franklin’s “death and taxes” list perhaps the most troubling is the universal experience of dealing with trauma throughout one’s life.
Too often when we talk about conditions related to neurodiversity, like autism spectrum disorder (ASD), we use negative words. It’s an “epidemic,” or a problem for which we need a cure. However, there are many people who embrace it! This condition offers a completely different perspective of the world and a new set of problem-solving skills. Ultimately, if our goal is to be more accepting and encouraging of diversity in society, shouldn’t this apply to neurodiversity, too?
As marijuana inches closer to legalization in many parts of the country—Maryland included—we’re still uncovering more about its effects on the brain. Although legal use is often restricted to adults who are at least 21 years old, this hasn’t stopped adolescents from using it. With greater accessibility comes greater concerns, especially since marijuana has lasting effects on the developing brain.
Now that spring has officially arrived, it’s time to get back outdoors! Not just for your physical health, but also for your mental health. Increasingly, researchers and psychologists alike are investigating the link between so-called “green space” and our general wellbeing. If you’ve ever experienced cabin fever or open-plan office anxiety, then you’ve felt the connection between us and our environment already. This spring, it’s time to take advantage of the natural world and all the benefits it can bring!
Spreading Awareness about Traumatic Brain Injuries
March 4th, 2019
What do you know about traumatic brain injuries or TBIs? When it comes to spreading awareness, our focus isn’t so much injuries themselves, but rather the lingering effects. It seems like the more we learn sometimes, the more confusion we have about a subject—and this is no exception. What we, in the professional sense, deem traumatic may actually be caused by a mild injury or concussion. It all depends on what damages occurs to the brain, which is much more difficult to judge (even for doctors). In honor of National Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness month this March, we’ll share more of what we know on this topic.
Navigating Relationships without Compromising your Mental Health
February 13th, 2019
With Valentine’s Day rapidly approaching, it can seem like everyone’s coupling up. Although we don’t recommend rushing into a relationship in time for the holiday, you shouldn’t let mental health problems interfere either. The truth is we all struggle to develop and maintain successful relationships. Whether romantic or not. But, in honor of the month of love, today we’ll focus on ways you navigate togetherness when mental illness comes into play.
Everyone has those days when their attention span just won’t cooperate. You can’t focus, you can’t seem to complete even a simple task, and you’re frustrated on top of all that. But what happens when it’s not just some days, but most days? What happens when you really try to buckle down and focus, but you simply can’t? Well, that’s why we’re here.
Parenting seems a lot more complicated today—it’s not just you! We even have new terms for it to further complicate matters. The latest (unflattering) nickname likens people to lawnmowers, based on their parenting style. Fortunately, we know you already have enough things on your plate, so we’re compiling all the latest terms into one easy-to-read blog. Then, you can decide which one(s) best fit you or forget all of them and just create your own!
In honor of Mental Health Awareness Week 2018, we want to talk about the facts! Or rather, common myths that most people believe when it comes to psychological matters. Every year millions of Americans are diagnosed with a mental illness, but millions more fail to understand the basics of what they’re going through. In an effort to combat these misunderstandings (that can often lead to social stigma), we’re addressing common mental health myths today!
The Truth Behind Harvard's Happiness Study & Relaltionships
September 12th, 2018
With more and more people touting the benefits of self-care, they often forget one key aspect: relationships. While looking inward and doing more to improve your mental/physical well-being is important, an influential Harvard study shows that your interpersonal connections have a lot to do with this, as well. The new twist on an old theme, “Your vibe attracts your tribe” might actually be more accurate in reverse! Nevertheless, after 80 years, the Harvard Study of Adult Development has shown that happiness and healthy relationships truly go hand-in-hand.
Technology Triggers: A Closer Look at Social Media & ADHD
August 15th, 2018
While studies linking social media to mental health issues like ADHD are nothing new, the emerging patterns in research are certainly raising questions. Inevitably, people (and parents, in particular) are wondering why the two topics keep appearing so closely linked. Is technology contributing to the growing number of mental illnesses in America? Should we be worried about children and adolescents having access to these apps? Before you jump to conclusions, though, be sure you know all the facts.
All children go through mood swings, especially as they grow older and hit the teenage years riddled with hormones. It can be easy to want to wait, to not jump to the conclusion that your child needs professional guidance to work through the issues they are facing.
To help make the decision, we’ve put together some tips you can keep in mind when determining if now is the time to call a child counselor. At the end of the day, trust your gut, and you can always reach out to professional child and teen therapists for advice.
Child and adolescent depression are becoming significantly more common. According to a 2017 estimate by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration over 3 million children and adolescents reported having a major depressive episode – up more than 40% since 2004!
As a parent or caregiver, the increased chances of your child being affected cannot be ignored. Having an awareness of that higher likelihood is both good and necessary to help protect your child’s wellbeing.
It might surprise you to know but The National Basketball Association, known as the NBA, is the sports industry leader in mental healthcare. The NBA started developing programs and initiatives in 2015 to help provide its athletes with comprehensive mental healthcare.
Each year, the NBA has taken steps forward to improve its programs. Sports therapy is becoming more recognized around the mental health world so we will take a look at the NBA’s programs and how sports therapy can help all athletes.
Mental Health across the world is a major human problem that does not get the attention it deserves. When taking a quick look around the web there are lots of articles about mental health facts but….. In those articles, there is very little analysis or conversation around those facts.
This article will not only give you mental health facts but also analyze those facts, put the mental health landscape into perspective, and give some solutions to the problems we face. We will first take a look at the global issues around mental health starting with the facts, give some analyses, and finally, provide some solutions.
Building Awareness: Mental Health after Sexual Assault
April 10th, 2019
During Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, we want to talk more about how this issue impacts mental health. The reality is one in three women and one in six men will encounter sexual violence at some point during their lives. Unfortunately, in the aftermath, these individuals are more vulnerable to both short-term and long-term psychological effects. How can we help? Let’s start by opening up the conversation.
These days, we’re all stressed out! Between the demands of work, family, friends, and home life, we’re expected to juggle it all without complaint. While some stress can be beneficial from a psychological standpoint, this chronic cycle most of us get caught up in is definitely not. Are you suffering from too much stress? Would you recognize the signs even if you were? Well, at The Family Center, we’re here to help our community combat this common problem.
The more people look for drug-free treatment options, the more Alpha-Stim has come up in conversations. Whether you’re struggling with chronic conditions like pain and insomnia, or mental health matters like anxiety and depression, you may have heard of it. At The Family Center, we try to stay at the forefront of treatments—whether clinical, pharmacological, nonpharmacological, or some combination—so we’ve been following Alpha-Stim for the last two decades. Today, we’ll share all we know about this name and what it could potentially do for you.
Maybe the last thing you want to do is read another article telling you what to do or how to feel—but that’s not what this is. Losing someone you love is difficult. No one who’s being honest will tell you otherwise. We’re just here to let you know that we understand what you’re going through and offer our help if it ever becomes too much.
There’s nothing quite like a lot of forced togetherness to emphasize how dysfunctional a family can be. As you look back on your time spent together (or apart) over the holidays, what do you see? Are their issues that can be resolved? Or closure you need to gain in order to move on? We know all this is easier said than done, but you don’t have to face these issues alone.
When you’re struggling with depression, it’s hard to imagine other people understanding exactly how you feel. Much less experiencing it for themselves. While mental health issues can easily come in different forms, you probably have more in common with others than you think. At The Family Center, we don’t just treat issues like depression—we work to understand them, and you! So, we know what it’s like to have these thoughts.
At Focal Points Therapy, we often work with children and teens diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), along with their parents. We hear their frustrations, see their struggles, and work with them to overcome their challenges. One topic that comes up frequently during these interactions is the classroom. There’s something about the educational atmosphere and expectations that contrasts with many of the symptoms of ADHD. In an effort to help teachers, parents, and other students better understand the situation, we’ll discuss this topic a little more in-depth.
Anger is a natural human emotion—just like happiness, sadness, fear, disgust, or surprise! All serve a purpose, depending on the time and place, but anger can get out of control for some people. When you find yourself experiencing this emotion more often than not or expressing it in unhealthy ways that affect your relationships with others, it may be time to consider anger management. It’s just one of the areas we specialize in at The Family Center, so today we’ll offer some insight on this often-misunderstood subject.
Coping with an inability to concentrate can be difficult—no matter what age you are. Does your child struggle to stay on task when studying (which shows in his/her grade)? Are you looking for a non-pharmacological solution to common mental health problems like ADD or ADHD? Well, you may want to look into neurofeedback. At Focal Points Therapy, it’s actually one of our specialties! Increasingly, it’s being used to combat more learning disorders, mood disorders, and even stress/anxiety. Our programs aim to teach you about control and allow you to focus more on what matters.