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Clinical Disorders

It is important to note that disordered thoughts and behaviors are only disordered out of context. This means that we learned the behavior in a given context where that behavior likely made sense and helped us survive; out of that earlier context the behavior is maladaptive and harmful to us.

 

In an effort to enhance our chances of survival our brain will always predict the most dangerous outcome so we tend to live our lives within the context of our most dangerous season of life; this can keep us trapped in old patterns of thought and behavior as we live our current lives in non-threatening environments. We are able to help you discover where you may have learned patterns of survival that once helped you but now cause you harm.

Depression

Depression is the most common reason people seek mental health services and antidepressants are the most prescribed mental health medication. Heidi understands the appropriate use of these medications; she will educate you on the side effects and limitations of each class of antidepressants. In addition to medication we will help you understand both the cause and type of depression you are suffering from. This can be a complex process that rarely resolves quickly but we are committed and able to help you recover and live a fuller life.

Anxiety

Anxiety is a very common reason people seek mental health services. Many people see medication as the primary way to treat anxiety; we believe medication plays a significant role in the management of anxiety, but we also incorporate cognitive therapy. The use of benzodiazepines such as Ativan, Clonazepam and Xanax can be very effect in the short-term management of anxiety but rarely are these medications indicated for long term use. We will help you manage your anxiety with therapy and medications that have less side effects than benzodiazepines.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

OCD is often the result of your brain attempting to create excessive order and predictability in response to a childhood that was very chaotic. In some cases, people can develop a personality disorder known as Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder. This disorder is characterized by a need for order and predictability that causes impairment in relationships. In the case of obsessive-compulsive personality disorder the individual often feels their actions are reasonable and only come to therapy because others find them unreasonable. In the case of clinical obsessive-compulsive disorder, the patient understands that their behavior is not productive. In either case we can help bring a health sense of order to life. Medication can help in the management of this disorder.

Personality Disorders

Personality disorders are divided in three groups or cluster. The "A" cluster includes schizoid, schizotypal and paranoid personality disorders. These disorders mimics some of the symptoms of schizophrenia. These individuals find connection with others both unnecessary and difficult. These disorders are very hard to treat as the individual rarely sees a need to change their relationship style. Mood stabilizing medications can be very useful in the management of these disorders.

The Cluster "B" group contains narcissistic, histrionic, antisocial and borderline personality disorders. These disorders are extremely resistant to change. In most cases we will not accept these patients as our practice is not geared to their needs. The most common patient from this group is borderline personality disorder which can respond to long term therapy using a treatment protocol known as dialectic behavioral therapy. Brooks is able to engage with these patients and will occasionally take these cases. Mood stabilizing medications are often used in conjunction with therapy.

The Cluster "C" group includes avoidant, dependent and obsessive personality disorders. These disorders all share a common theme of significant anxiety. These disorders do respond to therapy and we are all able to these patients. Medication can play a very useful role in the recovery of these patients.

Eating Disorders

Eating disorders can be very hard to treat. While there is no clear consensus on the cause of eating disorders, we are able help you understand what may be causing your symptoms and help you develop new healthy attitudes towards eating. We can help with anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorders. 

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

We believe ADHD is a very valid diagnosis that can occasionally be over diagnosed. We will help accurately diagnose this disorder and correctly identify your subtype. Therapy can be helpful but, in this disorder, medication is the primary mode of treatment. As with all medications there are side effects; we will educate you about these side effects and help you make treatment decisions that you are comfortable with and that provide you with the means to manage this disorder. We treat children, adolescents and adult suffering form ADHD.

Weight Loss

Weight loss can be very complicated as it involves both mental and physical health components. We understand the emotional components that contribute to weight gain. We also understand the science of food addictions. Our nurse practitioner will alert you to physical conditions that may be contributing to weight problems and our therapists will give you the skills needed to manage the emotional components of overeating.

Medication Services

Heidi offers a full range of diagnosis and medication management from family practice health care to mental health medications. She is a conservative practitioner who is acutely aware of the pitfalls of some medications. She will help you address your mental and physical health needs in a responsible way that limits your exposure to the negative side effects of some medications. We do not offer services for the long-term management of opiate dependence. In limited circumstances she will help you taper your dose of opiate medication as you seek to reduce your dependence on this class of medication.

(406) 253-3942

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