New York Behavioral Health Staff Writer's blog

Strategies to Overcome Social Anxiety

How Can We Overcome Social Anxiety?

Do you feel anxious or self-conscious in social situations? Are you shy to the point that if prevents you from engaging with people at work or other social settings? Do you find yourself worrying about what others may think of you? Do you hate being the center of attention because you think everyone notices how nervous you are? Do you find it hard to participate in conversations because you fear that you won’t have anything to contribute or people will find you boring or uninteresting?

Adolescent Substance Use, Brain Development and Treatment

Adolescent Substance Use, Brain Development, and Psychotherapeutic Change

Adolescence is a critical developmental period that is often associated with behavioral risk-taking and substance use. The prevalence of substance use increases significantly from early to late adolescence and peaks during the transition to adulthood (SAMHSA, 2011). Alcohol use rates increase from 29% to 65% between 8th grade and 12th grade, and similarly illicit drug use increases from 16% to 38% (Johnston, O’Malley, Bachman, & Schulenberg, 2010).

Psychological Adjustment After Mass Trauma (Virginia Tech Shooting)

Psychological Adjustment Following the Mass Shooting at Virginia Tech

Conservation of Resources Theory

Unfortunately, many people will experience some kind of traumatic event in their lifetime. Often it is a private experience such as abuse or assault. Sometimes, however, traumatic events can affect whole communities or even countries. Recent examples for this are terrorist attacks, school shootings and the church shooting in Charleston. Research shows that following a traumatic event, recovery is largely influenced by the losses and gains of valued resources for individuals.

Oppositional Defiant Disorder

Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)

ODD is one of the most commonly diagnosed mental health conditions in childhood. It is defined as a recurrent pattern of developmentally inappropriate levels of negativistic, defiant, disobedient and hostile behavior toward authority figures. ODD is diagnosed if these behaviors are present for at least 6 months and they negatively impact the child’s social, academic, and/or occupational functioning (DSM-V). The prevalence rate for ODD is estimated to be around 3% in the US.

Non-Suicidal Self-Injury and Its Treatment


Non-suicidal self-injury is the direct and deliberate destruction of one’s own body tissue without the intent to die (Lloyd-Richardson, Perrine, Dierker, & Kelley, 2007). Unfortunately, self-injury is a pervasive and dangerous problem among adolescents. The average age of onset for self-injury is 12 years old, however, it has been reported in children as young as 6 years old (Nock & Prinstein, 2004). Even though self-injury often starts in childhood/adolescence, it often persists into adulthood as well.

Ten Psychological Problems Best Treated by Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)

10 Psychological Problems Best Treated by Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)

CBT (Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy) refers to the combination of cognitive and behavioral therapies and has strong empirical support for the treatment of many psychological disorders. The basic premise of CBT is that negative emotions cannot be changed directly, therefore it targets thoughts and behaviors that are contributing to distressing emotions.

Alcohol Use Disorder in Women

Alcohol Use Disorder in Women

Alcohol use disorders (AUD - alcohol abuse and dependence) are major public health and safety problems. In the US, AUD is more prevalent among men (24.6% abuse, 17.4% dependence) than women (11.5% abuse, 8% dependence) (Keyes, Grant, & Hasin, 2008). However, in the last 70 years, the male to female ratio has decreased from 7:1 to 2:1 for alcohol dependence (Keyes et al., 2008).



In modern day work environments organizations often require their employees to be proactive, show initiative, collaborate effectively with co-workers, be committed to professional development, and pursue high quality performance standards (Bakker & Schaufeli, 2008). With the recent economic recession, downsizings and restructurings, and increased job insecurity for a lot of people, employees often want to invest increasing amount of time and effort into their work (Selmer & Waldstrom, 2007).

Violent Video Games and Aggression

Violent Video Games and Aggression

The question whether playing violent video games causes physical aggression has been an important one in research since the 1980s (Cooper & Mackie, 1986). Even though hundreds of studies have been conducted since, the debate about the link between video games and aggression is still ongoing not only in scientific circles but also in politics and the mass media (Bushman & Huesmann, 2014).

Strategies for Parents with Anxious Children

Strategies for Parents with Anxious Children

Childhood Anxiety and Symptoms

Imagine the following scenario. Your daughter, Grace, is complaining of a stomach ache in the morning. She seems down and she had trouble sleeping the night before. You check her temperature and everything seems normal. She is not physically ill. And since this has been happening since the beginning of the school year two weeks ago, you suspect that Grace has anxiety.