About Drew Alikakos - Meet Drew!
ADHD and ADD - What are the differences between ADHD and ADD? How do we tell if our child has ADHD and ADD?

What are the differences between ADHD and ADD? How do we tell if our child has ADHD and ADD?


Coping Skills - Tips on how to develop these extremely useful skills.
DUI and Addictions - What are ways we can help others with their addictions and minimize it's effect upon our family and friends.

What are ways we can help others with their addictions and minimize it’s effect upon our family and friends.

Marital Counseling - With a high divorce rate in America how can we make our marriages last? What are some useful ways to approach your marriage?

With a high divorce rate in America, how can we make our marriages last? What are some useful ways to approach your marriage?

From Web MD Marriage counseling can help couples in all types of intimate relationships — heterosexual or homosexual, married or not.

Some couples seek marriage counseling to strengthen their bonds and gain a better understanding of each other. Marriage counseling can also help couples who plan to get married. This pre-marriage counseling can help couples achieve a deeper understanding of each other and iron out differences before marriage.

In other cases, couples seek marriage counseling to improve a troubled relationship. You can use marriage counseling to address many specific issues, including:

Communication problems
Sexual difficulties
Conflicts about child rearing or blended families
Substance abuse
Financial problems

Marriage counseling may also be helpful in cases of domestic abuse. If violence has escalated to the point that you’re afraid, however, counseling isn’t adequate. Contact the police or a local shelter or crisis center for emergency support.

Marriage counseling typically brings couples or partners together for joint therapy sessions. Working with a therapist, you’ll learn skills to solidify your relationship. These skills may include communicating openly, problem solving together and discussing differences rationally. You’ll analyze both the good and bad parts of your relationship as you pinpoint and better understand the sources of your conflicts.

Talking about your problems with a marriage counselor may not be easy. Sessions may pass in silence as you and your partner seethe over perceived wrongs — or you may bring your fights with you, yelling and arguing during sessions. Both are OK. Your therapist can act as mediator or referee and help you cope with the resulting emotions and turmoil.

If you or your partner is coping with mental illness, substance abuse or other issues, your therapist may work with other health care providers to provide a complete spectrum of treatment.

If your partner refuses to attend marriage counseling sessions, you can go by yourself. It’s more challenging to patch up a relationship when only one partner is willing to go to therapy, but you can still benefit by learning more about your reactions and behavior in the relationship.
Marriage counseling is often short term. You may need only a few sessions to help you weather a crisis — or you may need marriage counseling for several months, particularly if your relationship has greatly deteriorated. The specific treatment plan will depend on the situation. In some cases, marriage counseling helps couples discover that their differences truly are irreconcilable and that it’s best to end the relationship.

Making the decision to go to marriage counseling can be tough. But marriage counseling can help you better cope with a troubled relationship — rather than trying to ignore it or hoping it gets better on its own.


OCD - What are symptoms of OCD? What exactly is OCD? How can I get treatment for OCD? How does the brain process thoughts?

What are symptoms of OCD? What exactly is OCD? How can I get treatment for OCD? How does the brain process thoughts?

Causes: (From Wikipedia) Scholars generally agree that both psychological and biological factors play a role in causing the disorder, although they differ in their degree of emphasis upon either type of factor. Psychological

Obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) is a psychiatric anxiety disorder that includes distressing, intrusive thoughts and related compulsions (tasks or “rituals”) to neutralize the obsessions. Obsessions are usually upsetting and the compulsions lead to temporary feelings of relief. To be diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder, one must have either obsessions or compulsions alone, or obsessions and compulsions together, but most people with OCD have both. Obsessions are:

Recurrent and persistent thoughts, impulses, or images that are intrusive and inappropriate. The thoughts cause severe anxiety or distress.

The thoughts, impulses, or images are not just excessive worries about real-life problems.

The person tries to ignore or suppress the thoughts, impulses, or images, or to neutralize them with some other thought or action.

The person recognizes that the obsessional thoughts, impulses, or images are a product of his or her own mind, and are not based in reality.

Compulsions are:

Repetitive behaviors or mental acts that the person feels they must perform in response to an obsession, or according to rigid rules.

The behaviors or mental acts to prevent or reduce distress or prevent some dreaded event or situation; however, these behaviors or mental acts either are not connected in a realistic way with what they are supposed to neutralize or prevent or are clearly excessive.

In addition, at some point during the course of the disorder, the person must realize that his/her obsessions or compulsions are unreasonable or excessive, which is why people with OCD are not considered to be detached from reality or psychotic. The obsessions or compulsions must be time-consuming, taking up more than one hour per day, cause distress, or cause difficulty in social, work, or school functioning. Having OCD is stressful and can lead to feelings of hopelessness and depression.[

-Definition of OCD (Wikipedia): Obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental disorder characterized by intrusive thoughts that produce anxiety, by repetitive behaviors aimed at reducing anxiety, or by combinations of such thoughts (obsessions) and behaviors (compulsions). The symptoms of this anxiety disorder range from repetitive hand-washing and extensive hoarding to preoccupation with sexual, religious, or aggressive impulses. These symptoms can be alienating and time-consuming, and often cause severe emotional and economic loss. The acts of those who have OCD may appear paranoid and come across to others as psychotic. However, except in some severe cases, OCD sufferers generally recognize their thoughts and subsequent actions as irrational, and they may become further distressed by this realization. OCD is the fourth most common mental disorder and is diagnosed nearly as often as asthma and diabetes mellitus. In the United States, one in 50 adults has OCD. The phrase “obsessive–compulsive” has become part of the English lexicon, and is often used in an informal or caricatured manner to describe someone who is meticulous, perfectionistic, absorbed in a cause, or otherwise fixated on something or someone. Although these signs may be present in OCD, a person who exhibits them does not necessarily have OCD, and may instead have obsessive–compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) or some other condition, such as an autism spectrum disorder. The symptoms of OCD can range from difficulty with odd numbers to nervous habits such as opening a door and closing it a certain number of times before one leaves it either open or shut. #

Exposure and response prevention (ERP) is a treatment method available from behavioral psychologists and cognitive-behavioral therapists for a variety of anxiety disorders, especially Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. It is an example of an Exposure Therapy. The method is predicated on the idea that a therapeutic effect is achieved as subjects confront their fears and discontinue their escape response. An example would be of a person who repeatedly checks light switches to make sure they’re turned off. They would carry out a program of exposure to their feared stimulus (leaving lights switched on) while refusing to engage in any safety behaviors. It differs from Exposure Therapy for phobia in that the resolution to refrain from the avoidance response is to be maintained at all times and not just during specific practice sessions. Thus, not only does the subject experience habituation to the feared stimulus, they also practice a fear-incompatible behavioral response to the stimulus. While this type of therapy typically causes some short-term anxiety, this facilitates long-term reduction in obsessive and compulsive symptoms.

Anxiety - Many people suffer from anxiety, listen to this podcast to learn more about it and treatments.

Many people suffer from anxiety, listen to this podcast to learn more about it and treatments.

From WebMD What Are the Symptoms of an Anxiety Disorder?

Symptoms vary depending on the type of anxiety disorder, but general symptoms include:

Feelings of panic, fear, and uneasiness
Uncontrollable, obsessive thoughts
Repeated thoughts or flashbacks of traumatic experiences
Ritualistic behaviors, such as repeated hand washing
Problems sleeping
Cold or sweaty hands and/or feet
Shortness of breath
An inability to be still and calm
Dry mouth
Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
Muscle tension

What Causes Anxiety Disorders?

The exact cause of anxiety disorders is unknown; but anxiety disorders — like other forms of mental illness — are not the result of personal weakness, a character flaw, or poor upbringing. As scientists continue their research on mental illness, it is becoming clear that many of these disorders are caused by a combination of factors, including changes in the brain and environmental stress.

Like certain illnesses, such as diabetes, anxiety disorders may be caused by chemical imbalances in the body. Studies have shown that severe or long-lasting stress can change the balance of chemicals in the brain that control mood. Other studies have shown that people with certain anxiety disorders have changes in certain brain structures that control memory or mood. In addition, studies have shown that anxiety disorders run in families, which means that they can be inherited from one or both parents, like hair or eye color. Moreover, certain environmental factors — such as a trauma or significant event — may trigger an anxiety disorder in people who have an inherited susceptibility to developing the disorder.

How Common Are Anxiety Disorders?

Anxiety disorders affect about 19 million adult Americans. Most anxiety disorders begin in childhood, adolescence, and early adulthood. They occur slightly more often in women than in men, and occur with equal frequency in whites, African-Americans, and Hispanics.

How Are Anxiety Disorders Treated?

Fortunately, much progress has been made in the last two decades in the treatment of people with mental illnesses, including anxiety disorders. Although the exact treatment approach depends on the type of disorder, one or a combination of the following therapies may be used for most anxiety disorders:

Medication : Medicines used to reduce the symptoms of anxiety disorders include anti-depressants and anxiety-reducing drugs.

Psychotherapy : Psychotherapy (a type of counseling) addresses the emotional response to mental illness. It is a process in which trained mental health professionals help people by talking through strategies for understanding and dealing with their disorder.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy: People suffering from anxiety disorders often participate in this type of psychotherapy in which the person learns to recognize and change thought patterns and behaviors that lead to troublesome feelings.

Dietary and lifestyle changes

Relaxation therapy

Adolescent's - This will benefit parents and even children in understanding what adolescent issues are out there and possible ways to help.

This will benefit parents and even children in understanding what adolescent issues are out there and possible ways to help.