Category Archives: Adolescent Mental Health

Helping Children Deal with Bouts of Anger

Posted July 12, 2021

Dealing with a child’s anger is challenging, but help is available when you understand the dynamics that lead to outbursts and meltdowns.

  • Anger is normal for children and adults, but it can spiral out of control.
  • Anger in children has many contributing factors.
  • Medications, education, and therapy can help families regain control of a child’s aggressive behaviors.

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How to Cope with the Stress of Distance Learning

Posted September 28, 2020

What is Distance Learning?

Distance learning is education where the student is physically not in front of the teacher for the lesson, and it’s more common than ever, thanks to the internet. Video conferencing, computer-based learning, and hybrid learning are examples of tools available to facilitate distance learning. It offers students the opportunity to learn in more flexible and affordable ways. Here are a few of the advantages of distance learning. Continue reading

Emotional Regulation Skills and Stability

Posted May 1, 2020

Emotional Regulation Skills and Stability

Every human emotion has a purpose. Some bring pleasure, others keep people safe, and still, others allow sadness and mourning. Emotions are a normal and healthy part of life. However, people must be able to understand, interpret, and regulate emotions to maintain healthy functioning. One person’s emotions can affect the feelings of those around them as well.

When trauma or mental health problems interfere with the ability to regulate emotions, therapy can help. DBT may be an effective form of treatment, as it focuses on acknowledging feelings as neither good or bad and managing reactions to them. DBT involves one-on-one sessions with a trained therapist and group sessions.

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Fear of Abandonment

Posted February 24, 2020

How Abandonment Happens

For healthy development to occur, children need physical and emotional love and care. When those needs go unmet, abandonment issues can happen. Abandonment develops when a person doesn’t have the physical and psychological presence of a significant person or people. Death and divorce are two everyday situations that can result in feelings of abandonment. While often rooted in childhood, abandonment issues can appear in adults as well, and they take different forms.

Physical abandonment means that a person’s physical needs are neglected, unmet, or unaddressed. For children, this can take many forms: Continue reading

Mindfulness for Teens and Why it’s Important for Mental Health: Part 2

Posted June 27, 2019

In Part One of our discussion regarding the value of mindfulness for teens, we discussed exactly what mindfulness is, how it can benefit teens, and how to help your teen improve their ability to be mindful. Now, in Part Two of our series on mindfulness, we’ll be diving deeper into the science of mindfulness, why more experts are recommending mindfulness exercises as an alternative to traditional treatments, and a variety of suggested mindfulness exercises to help your teen. [Read Part One]

Mindfulness: What Science Says

Most people that have incorporated mindfulness exercises into their daily routines will tell you of the positive difference they’ve made in their everyday lives – but what does science have to say about the efficacy of mindfulness?

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Mindfulness for Teens and Why it’s Important for Mental Health: Part 1

Posted May 31, 2019

Every day, teenagers are experiencing a multitude of emotional and mental struggles, particularly as they navigate an increasingly complex world influenced by factors such as social media, academic pressures, family dynamics, and more. Adding to the weight of these constant pressures is the still-in-progress development of your teen’s ability to regulate their emotions, manage stress, and balance responsibilities.

In the face of this array of unique challenges, the ability to practice mindfulness is one of the most impactful and valuable skills any teen or young adult can develop.

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8 TIPS to Help Clients Do Homework

Posted June 6, 2018

Dr. Lane P.: Hi, I’m Dr. Lane Pederson. One of the most common questions I get from participants in my seminars is, How do I get clients to do homework? In this short video, I’m going to share with you eight tips that I find to be very effective. Continue reading

Emotions, Thoughts, and Situations That Trigger Addictive Behavior

Posted November 9, 2017

It can be challenging to identify and manage what triggers addictive behaviors. Understanding what sets off these behaviors and knowing which strategies and solutions for change are effective are essential in one’s recovery.

Enjoy this free handout on Emotions, Thoughts, and Situations That Trigger Addictive Behavior taken from Dr. Lane Pederson’s book The Expanded Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Training Manual.


5 Things to Think About When Working With Integrated Dual Disorder Clients

Posted October 19, 2017
  1. A basic truth of behavioral health interventions is that no two clients are alike.
    It is important to remember this as we do our work and it is especially vital to keep in mind with the complication of two significant behavioral disorders. How a client’s chemical health and mental health issues interact, impact daily functioning, affect willingness and even abilities to participate in therapy, is a very individual thing.
  2. Another basic truth is that for all clients, ‘perception is reality.’
    This is important in IDD treatment since mental health symptoms and chemical use (and the effects of long-term use) have real consequences for how a client might perceive their world.
  3. A harsh truth of therapy is that change is difficult, time consuming, and at times, difficult to notice.
    For IDD clients, there can be a significantly higher degree of difficulty paired with a lower level of skills. This can make the process even harder, longer, and more difficult to experience a sense of success.
  4. Acceptance and support are key additive factors to success in therapy.
    IDD clients tend to have heavily damaged, if not absent, systems of support and acceptance.
    There is a drive from payers to identify the primary diagnosis as the target for treatment.
  5. IDD clients have two significant primary diagnoses in all cases, and the majority have significant issues across what used to be the five axis’ of diagnosis. We have to attend to all significant issues.
    ~Steven Girardeau, PsyD, LP, Director of Clinical Services at MHS