Scrupulosity: Live Forum with Dr. Cassiday on April 18, 2015

Join Dr. Cassiday in a BeyondOCD LiveForum On Saturday, April 18, 10:30am – 12:30 pm 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.

Dr. Cassiday will appear with a student named ‘Emily’ who suffered from scrupulosity, and together they will discuss the steps Emily took during months of intensive exposure with response prevention therapy in both an outpatient and day treatment that led her to her current state of well-being.  For more information and to register, go to

Dr. Alden discusses Mindfulness at OCD Live Forum

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.


Dr. Santos appointed to BeyondOCD Board of Directors

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



Preventing Panic from Concern About Ebola

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 Appears on HuffPost Live Session: Living with Anxiety

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. Cassiday quoted in article on Robin Williams’ Suicide

Dr. Karen Cassiday is quoted in an article on, 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.


Robin Williams’ Death Highlights the Need for Suicide Prevention

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
  • Insomnia
  • 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:



Dr. Zayed Volunteers with Physicians for Peace

Dr. Maha Zayed Volunteering with Physicians for Peace

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!

Family Action Network Presentation by Dr. Cassiday

Dr. Cassiday and Dr. Schmaus at the FANfare event.

Dr. Cassiday and Dr. Schmaus at the FANfare event.

Dr. Karen Cassiday recently spoke at the FANfare showcase at New Trier High School on the topic of “How to Create a Mentally Well Home”.    The Family Action Network (based in New Trier township) brings in nationally known speakers on a regular basis to educate parents.  The FANfare series showcases local professionals to over 100 school and other non-profit parent education programmers. Through a highly selective process, only ten speakers are invited to participate. and Dr. Cassiday was honored to be included. The Family Action Network (FAN) connects parents, educators and professionals through collaborative programming that educates, inspires and positively impacts the broader community.  For more information, check out their website at

ATC Staff Present at National ADAA Conference

The annual conference of the Anxiety and Depression Association of America met in Chicago.  All of the staff made presentations to an international audience on the latest advances in treatment of anxiety and depression.  Dr. Cassiday, Dr. Pojas and Dr. Laris spoke of helping patients develop good mental health.  Dr. Schmaus and Dr. Zayed spoke about the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder.  Dr. Schmaus and Dr. Zayed’s talk was chosen by the ADAA as one of 15 presentations from the conference to offer for sale on their website.

Dr. Brian Schmaus, Dr. Maha Zayed & Dr. Karen Cassiday at the ADAA annual meeting

Dr. Brian Schmaus, Dr. Maha Zayed & Dr. Karen Cassiday at the ADAA annual meeting

Click here to purchase copies of Dr. Schmaus and Dr. Zayed’s presentation on the treatment of PTSD.