Co-Occurring Mental Health Conditions
Many people experience multiple mental health conditions, such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety disorders, mood disorders, and/or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Mental health conditions can also occur frequently among people who are neurodivergent, sometimes presenting or exacerbating executive functioning difficulties experienced by those on the autism spectrum and/or with attention deficit disorders.
Evidence Based Treatments of Co-Occurring Mental Health Conditions
At The Reeds Center, we offer treatment for these conditions with or without co-occurring mental health conditions. Our treatment plans are individualized and adapted for each client. The best course of action for an individual may involve a number of evidence-based treatments, including:
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
CBT has significant empirical evidence for treating mood disorders (both major depressive disorder and bipolar disorders), and it can also be helpful for treating anxiety disorders such as generalized and social anxiety and phobias (including emetophobia and illness anxiety).
Exposure and response prevention (ERP)
ERP is a type of therapy for OCD that involves gradually exposing yourself to your fears and resisting the urge to perform your compulsions. ERP can be very effective in treating OCD, but it can also be challenging.
Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
DBT is a type of CBT that uses mindfulness to help people develop strategies for managing strong emotions and interpersonal difficulties.
Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT)
ACT is another type of mindfulness based therapy that helps people develop a relationship with painful thoughts and emotions that allows them to continue moving toward what is most important to them.
Medication can be an effective part of treatment, especially when combined with therapy. The best medication for a person will depend on their individual needs. The Reeds Center works with many psychiatrists within the community and can provide referrals.
Treating Mood Disorder for People with Co-Occurring Conditions
Many people with other mental health conditions also struggle with mood disorders, including major depressive disorder, dysthymia, and bipolar mood disorders. Because of the impact mood can have on daily functioning and ability to engage in therapeutic exercises, Reeds clinicians carefully evaluate the degree to which a person’s mood disorder needs to be addressed before working on another condition.
We collaborate with clients on developing a treatment plan to maximize its likelihood of success, which may involve more intensive work, additional therapeutic approaches (such as DBT or ACT), and/or collaborating with providers of biological interventions such as medication or therapies such as Ketamine or Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Reeds clinicians are accustomed to working in collaboration with other mental healthcare professionals in the community to best support their client’s management of mood-related symptoms and functioning.
We Offer Online & In-Person Sessions to Co-Occurring Mental Health Conditions
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Treating Mental Health Conditions for People with Autism Spectrum Disorder
People with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are more likely to have anxiety disorders and other mental health conditions than the general population. This experience can be very challenging for people on the spectrum, but treatment options are available.
Several clinicians at The Reeds Center work frequently with people on the spectrum who have other mental health conditions, like OCD and anxiety disorders. For each person and their loved ones, clinicians develop a treatment plan that takes into account individual learning styles and motivation, level of family involvement and support, and helps break down fear that may be overwhelming into manageable exercises.
Treating Mental Health Conditions for People with ADHD or Executive Functioning Deficits
Many people with mental health conditions also have executive functioning deficits, with or without a diagnosis of Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Symptoms of mental health conditions can cause difficulties with many of the executive functions, including:
Given that most CBT treatment can be structured and behavioral in nature, Reeds Center clinicians often include executive functioning support in their treatment plans. Our individualized assessment and treatment helps identify clients’ difficulties in executive functioning, which allows clinicians to adapt standard CBT practices in ways that support people’s engagement in treatment.
Treating Mental Health Conditions for People with Co-Occurring PTSD, Including Complex PTSD
Many people who are treated at The Reeds Center have PTSD and another co-occurring condition. Individuals with PTSD or complex PTSD are at higher risk of developing OCD, anxiety disorders, and eating disorders, for example.
The Reeds Center provides different types of empirically supported treatment for PTSD and complex PTSD, including:
STAIR-NT (Skills Training in Affective and Interpersonal Regulation / Narrative Therapy),
STAIR-NT is a therapy that helps people with PTSD and complex PTSD strengthen their emotional regulation and interpersonal connections before engaging in the narrative processing of traumatic events. Based in attachment and learning theories, STAIR-NT has been highly effective at helping people recover from multiple, complex traumatic experiences such as childhood sexual and physical abuse and neglect.
CPT (Cognitive Processing Therapy)
CPT is a time-limited therapy that helps individuals with trauma understand how those experiences have affected their beliefs about themselves, other people, and the world. The therapy helps people practice and reinforce new beliefs that are based on non-traumatic experiences and observations, and can include exposure processing of traumatic events.
PE (Prolonged Exposure)
PE has wide empirical support for helping people reduce their PTSD symptoms and improve functioning. In this therapy, individuals learn to interrupt the self-reinforcing cycles of fear and avoidance that maintain PTSD symptoms such as flashbacks. In order to build their ability to tolerate the difficult emotions that traumatic memories evoke, the therapist and the patient develop imaginal and in vivo exposures. Imaginal work typically involves reading or listening to a detailed account of the traumatic event, while in vivo exposures typically involve graduated exercises where people intentionally approach situations that evoke difficult emotions related to the traumatic event.
When PTSD occurs along with other disorders, Reeds clinicians engage in careful assessment of the relationship between the symptoms of PTSD and the other difficulties. Based on this assessment, clinicians review their treatment plan with the client and agree on a course of action, which may include additional therapy, more intensive therapy, and/or medication or other biological interventions. Reeds clinicians coordinate with other mental health care providers in order to come up with a coherent treatment plan to maximize treatment outcomes.
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