Dr. Karen Cassiday is pleased to announce her involvement in Rogers Memorial Hospital’s new Behavior Health Center in Chicago, which offers partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient treatment for adults and children. In addition to seeing patients and running the day-to-day operations of the Anxiety Treatment Center of Greater Chicago, she will be serving as the Clinical Director of OCD Services for Rogers. The hospital will be opening in July, 2015.
Many of the Anxiety Treatment Center of Greater Chicago clinicians attended the annual Anxiety and Depression Association of America conference held last month in Miami. In addition to tremendous opportunities to learn the latest research and network with international experts, ATC staff led educational sessions of their own. Dr. Schmaus and Dr. Zayed conducted a presentation focused on helping mental health professionals better treat patients and their families who are dealing with complicated and severe anxiety and mood disorders. Dr. Alden and Dr. Siegel spoke about treating the fear of vomiting (emetophobia) using a cognitive-behavioral approach. By attending this annual conference, our staff learn new strategies and techniques, enabling us to enrich our practice and provide our patients with optimal, cutting-edge care.
Dr. Cassiday led a BeyondOCD LiveForum on Scrupulosity on April 18, 2015, at Francis Parker School in Chicago. Scrupulosity is a form of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) involving religious or moral obsessions. Scrupulous individuals are overly concerned that something they thought or did might be a sin or other violation of moral doctrine.
During the forum, a patient named ‘Emily’ discussed her experience with scrupulosity and the obsessive thoughts she had about her Christian faith. Dr. Cassiday described the intensive exposure with response prevention therapy she utilized to help Emily recover from her condition. This article further reports on the forum, and includes a brief video of Dr. Cassiday describing scrupulosity: Scrupulosity – Where OCD and Faith Collide.
Learn how mindfulness practice can change your brain at the OCD Live Forum on Thursday, February 5. Dr. Alison Alden from the Anxiety Treatment Center of Greater Chicago will join Dr. Rachel Jacobs in presenting exciting new research on how mindfulness can enhance traditional treatment for anxiety and depression. This event will be held at the Francis Parker school in Chicago from 7 – 9pm. For more information or to register please go to: beyondocd.
Melanie Santos, Psy.D., was recently appointed to the board of directors of BeyondOCD. BeyondOCD’s mission is to ensure that all people affected by Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), anxiety, and related disorders have access to the help they need to live life to its fullest potential. Beyond OCD is the leading provider of consumer-friendly resources to help sufferers cope with and conquer OCD, and they work to increase public and professional awareness of OCD, educate and support people with OCD and their families, and to encourage research into new treatments and a cure. For more information, go to BeyondOCD.org.
Non-stop coverage of the Ebola crisis has raised the anxiety level in the calmest of individuals. Dr. Karen Cassiday writes about the steps you can take to avoid increasing your own anxiety in an article for BeyondOCD: Preventing Panic from Concern about Ebola.
Dr. Cassiday was asked to appear as a mental health expert on a HuffPost Live video session during Huffington Post’s week-long series about mental health in America. In this video, several people who suffer from anxiety (including the host, Alyona Minkovski) share their stores while Dr. Cassiday offers expert advice on how to live with anxiety. You can view the 30 minute live-stream by clicking this link: Mental Health: Living with Anxiety.
Dr. Karen Cassiday is quoted in an article on yahoo.com, where she she describes the importance of so many people stepping forward to disclose their own struggles with depression. “If something is kept silent, it creates stigma. It’s important for people to find out that they are not alone.” You can find the article here: Robin Williams’s Suicide Inspires Others to Speak Out.
The tragic death of beloved comedian Robin Williams has brought the issue of suicide to the public eye. Most people do not realize that suicide kills more Americans than car accidents. “We all know to wear our seat belts and strap our children into car seats to prevent accidents, yet few people receive the mental health treatment they need to prevent suicide”, comments Dr. Karen Cassiday. Suicide can be prevented, particularly if friends and family members pay attention to the following warning signs*** that people who kill themselves often show:
- Talking about wanting to kill themselves, or saying they wish they were dead
- Looking for a way to kill themselves
- Talking about a specific suicide plan
- Feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
- Feeling trapped, desperate, or needing to escape from an intolerable situation
- Having the feeling of being a burden to others
- Feeling humiliated
- Having intense anxiety and/or panic attacks
- Losing interest in things, or losing the ability to experience pleasure
- Becoming socially isolated and withdrawn from friends, family, and others
- Acting irritable or agitated
- Showing rage, or talking about seeking revenge for being victimized or rejected, whether or not the situations the person describes seem real
***Risk factors identified by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
Suicide can be prevented through effective treatment. At the Anxiety Treatment Center of Greater Chicago, our staff can help assess risk and alleviate the worry and concerns over suicide, while treating the sources of anxiety and depression. Contact us to set up a confidential consultation.
For more information about suicide:
- ADAA: Understanding Anxiety and Suicide
- Forbes: Robin Williams’ Death Shows Suicide Can Strike At Any Age. Here Are Ways To Prevent It
Dr. Maha Zayed Volunteering with Physicians for Peace
Dr. Maha Zayed traveled with the prestigious organization, Physicians for Peace, in June to offer psychological services to underserved populations. She was the only mental health professional in a team of 21 physicians that volunteered in 3 impoverished hospitals in Asia. She provided education about effective treatments for anxiety disorders to professionals in the mental health field, including nurses, psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, and students. She also offered crisis management with patients who presented to the hospitals’ emergency departments. We are proud of her commitment to helping others!