Adult ADHD Psychiatrist, Dr. Jeffrey Ditzell

July 28, 2017

Fidgeting Can Be Good For You

Are you a fidgeter? From now on, you can ignore the frequent requests you undoubtedly receive to just sit still. A new study finds that fidgeting — the toe-tapping, foot-wagging and other body movements that annoy your co-workers — is in fact good for your health. Sitting is one of the scourges of modern life. We sit during meetings, automobile and airplane trips, while completing lengthy work assignments and while binge-watching “Stranger Things.” Studies of movement patterns indicate that most of us spend between eight and 10 hours each day seated. During that time, our bodies and, in particular, our […]
June 25, 2017

Can Psychiatric Drugs Blunt the Mother-Baby Bond?

It’s normal for expectant parents to worry if they don’t feel a strong connection to the baby right away. “Those kinds of mixed fears and anxieties are really common in most pregnancies, certainly first pregnancies,” said Dorothy Greenfeld, a licensed clinical social worker and professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Yale School of Medicine. Bonding is a process that takes time, and while it can begin in pregnancy, the relationship between parent and child mostly develops after birth. Psychiatric conditions, and the medicines used to treat them, can complicate the picture. Antidepressants, the most widely used class of psychiatric drugs, […]
June 4, 2017

What are the Common Signs of General Anxiety Disorder?

What are the Common Signs of General Anxiety Disorder? General anxiety disorder is typically defined as excessive, ongoing worry and fear. These worries can cut into your daily life, and make something as simple as getting out of bed in the morning seem like a daunting task. When your anxieties begin to affect your life in this way, you should take into account that it’s probably something more than just the ‘standard’ worries that we all experience from time to time. But, because anxiety symptoms can be different for everyone, it’s important to know what most of them look like, […]
June 1, 2017

Fidget Spinners Provide Entertainment, Not ADHD Help

Fidget spinners — the trendy toy of the moment — are causing a commotion. A lot of kids love them, just as many teachers hate them and some people think they’re more than just toys. The basic fidget spinner has three prongs centered around a circle with bearings in the middle. Take one prong, give it a spin and watch as the triangle shape becomes a blur, sort of like a ceiling fan. The toys are manufactured by several different companies, and sold all over the place — airports, gas stations, train stations, toy stores. In many places where fidget […]
April 30, 2017

Do You Zone Out? Procrastinate? Might Be Adult ADHD

Do you pop up from your seat during meetings and finish other people’s sentences? And maybe you also procrastinate, or find yourself zoning out in the middle of one-on-one conversations? It’s possible you have adult ADHD. Six simple questions can reliably identify adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, according to a World Health Organization advisory group working with two additional psychiatrists. The questions are: How often do you have difficulty concentrating on what people say to you, even when they are speaking to you directly? How often do you leave your seat in meetings and other situations in which you are expected […]
March 26, 2017

A Medicine That Can Help Drinkers

If you drink more alcohol than you want to or should, you’re not alone. A nationwide survey by the National Institutes of Health found that 28 percent of adults in the U.S. are heavy drinkers or drink more than is recommended. Yet, most heavy drinkers don’t get the help they need. “The biggest problem we have in the field is that less than 10 percent of individuals with an alcohol use disorder get any treatment whatsoever,” says George Koob, director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Part of the challenge, researchers say, is that many drinkers don’t […]
February 26, 2017

A Brain Tweak Lets Mice Abstain From Cocaine

Researchers have created mice that appear impervious to the lure of cocaine. Even after the genetically engineered animals were given the drug repeatedly, they did not appear to crave it the way typical mice do, a team reports in Nature Neuroscience. “They didn’t keep going into the room where they received the cocaine and they seemed to be just as happy exploring all around the cage,” says Shernaz Bamji, a professor in the Department of Cellular and Physiological Sciences at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. “Addiction is a form of learning,” Bamji says. And somehow, these mice never […]
February 5, 2017

Drinking on Antidepressants

“So why did you stop drinking?” my friend Brad asked recently when we were out for dinner. “You never seemed to have a drinking problem.” The question surprised me, coming as it did a full two years after my decision to take a “break” from alcohol. He was scanning the wine list, and I sensed he was hoping I’d share a bottle of French rosé with him. So I decided to tell him the truth. “To get my depression back under control.” In my late 50s, my longstanding depression had started to deepen, albeit imperceptibly at first. I continued drinking […]
January 1, 2017

Medications Can Help People Stop Abusing Alcohol

Two often-overlooked medications might help millions of Americans who abuse alcohol to quit drinking or cut back. Public health officials, building on a push to treat people who abuse opioids with medications, want physicians to consider using medications to treat alcohol addiction. The drugs can be used in addition to or sometimes in place of peer-support programs, they say. “We want people to understand we think AA is wonderful, but there are other options,” says George Koob, director of the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, a part of the federal National Institutes of Health. It is still rare […]
December 4, 2016

The Epidemic of Worry

We’ve had a tutorial on Anxiety & Depression this year. The election campaign isn’t really about policy proposals, issue solutions or even hope. It’s led by two candidates who arouse gargantuan anxieties, fear and hatred in their opponents. As a result, some mental health therapists are reporting that three-quarters of their patients are mentioning significant election-related anxiety. An American Psychological Association study found that more than half of all Americans are very or somewhat stressed by this race. Of course, there are good and bad forms of anxiety — the kind that warns you about legitimate dangers and the kind […]
November 2, 2016

Does the Flu Provide Better Immunity Than a Flu Shot?

Studies also show that even when the antibody response wanes, immunity from a natural infection tends to last longer than that from a vaccine. A 2011 study in PLoS One, for example, found that just over half of patients infected with the 2009 H1N1 flu still had an antibody response after six months, while only about a third of vaccinated subjects did. To read more from KEVIN MCCARTHY, click here.
October 2, 2016

Doctors Who Treat Opioid Addiction Often See Very Few Patients

Many people struggling with opioid addiction can’t find a doctor to provide medication-assisted treatment, even though it’s highly effective. One reason could be that doctors who are qualified to prescribe the medication typically treat just a handful of patients. Researchers at the RAND Corporation looked at pharmacy records from the seven states with the most doctors approved to prescribe buprenorphine, which helps people manage cravings and avoid withdrawal. They found 3,234 doctors who had prescribed the drug, also known as Suboxone, to new patients from 2010 to 2013. The median number of patients by a doctor treated each month was […]
June 7, 2016

New Opioid Limits Challenge the Most Pain-Prone

If you’ve come to rely on opioids for chronic pain, as a growing proportion of older adults has, you may have noticed that the drugs are becoming more difficult to get. Something had to be done, surely: More than 165,000 people died from overdoses from 1999 to 2014. But recent restrictions on access to these painkillers are likely to disproportionately affect the elderly — despite the fact that abuse and misuse of these painkillers have historically been lower among older patients than younger ones. Older patients are simply more apt to have chronic pain. Some of their doctors are going […]
May 1, 2016

How to Stop Overprescribing Antibiotics

ANTIBIOTICS are an indispensable weapon in every physician’s arsenal, but when prescribed unnecessarily for nonbacterial infections like the common cold, as they too often are, they provide no benefit and create problems. They wipe out healthy bacteria and can cause side effects like yeast infections and allergic reactions. Worse still, they contribute to the rise of “superbugs” that resist antibiotic treatment. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that about half of outpatient antibiotic prescriptions in the United States are unnecessary. It also estimates that each year as many as two million Americans suffer from antibiotic-resistant illnesses, and 23,000 […]
May 1, 2016

How Talking Openly Against Stigma Helped A Mother And Son Cope With Bipolar Disorder

It was December 2012 when the country learned about the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, that left 20 children dead at the hands of 20-year-old shooter Adam Lanza. After the shock and the initial grief came questions about how it could have happened and why. Reports that Adam Lanza may have had some form of undiagnosed mental illness surfaced. The tragedy drove Liza Long to write a blog post on that same day, titled “I Am Adam Lanza’s Mother.” She wasn’t Lanza’s mom, but she was raising a child with a mental disorder. Her 13-year-old son had violent rages […]
May 1, 2016

Is It Old Age, or A.D.H.D.?

Heightened awareness of A.D.H.D. is bringing increased referrals of elderly adults to specialty clinics. “A child had been treated, then a parent, then everyone started looking at Grandpa, and saying, ‘Oh my gosh,’ and they would bring him in,” said Dr. Martin Wetzel, associate clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Yet many general practitioners and mental health experts mistake symptoms like impaired short-term memory or an inability to stay focused on a task as something else. “We do a horrible job of training health care professionals about adult A.D.H.D.,” Dr. Wetzel said. To read more […]
May 1, 2016

Research Hints at Promise and Difficulty of Helping People With A.D.H.D. Learn

Over the past few decades, cognitive scientists have found that small alterations in how people study can accelerate and deepen learning, improving retention and comprehension in a range of subjects, including math, science and foreign languages. The findings come almost entirely from controlled laboratory experiments of individual students, but they are reliable enough that software developers, government-backed researchers and various other innovators are racing to bring them to classrooms, boardrooms, academies — every real-world constituency, it seems, except one that could benefit most: people with learning disabilities. Now, two new studies explore the effectiveness of one common cognitive science technique […]
May 1, 2016

Hormone Therapy for Prostate Cancer Tied to Depression

Hormone therapy for prostate cancer may increase the risk for anxiety & depression, a new analysis has found. Hormone therapy, or androgen deprivation therapy, a widely used prostate cancer treatment, aims to reduce levels of testosterone and other male hormones, which helps limit the spread of prostate cancer cells. From 1992 to 2006, researchers studied 78,552 prostate cancer patients older than 65, of whom 33,382 had hormone therapy. Compared with those treated with other therapies, men who received androgen deprivation therapy were 23 percent more likely to receive a diagnosis of depression, and they had a 29 percent increased risk […]
April 10, 2016

Can’t Focus? It Might Be Undiagnosed Adult ADHD

When Cathy Fields was in her late 50s, she noticed she was having trouble following conversations with friends. “I could sense something was wrong with me,” she says. “I couldn’t focus. I could not follow.” Fields was worried she had suffered a stroke or was showing signs of early dementia. Instead she found out she had attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. Fields is now 66 years old and lives in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. She’s a former secretary and mother of two grown children. Fields was diagnosed with ADHD about eight years ago. Her doctor ruled out any physical […]
April 10, 2016

Misuse Of ADHD Drugs By Young Adults Drives Rise In ER Visits

It’s no secret that stimulant medications such as Adderall that are prescribed to treat symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder are sometimes used as “study drugs” aimed at boosting cognitive performance. And emergency room visits linked to misuse of the drug are on the rise, according to a study published Tuesday in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. “Young adults in the 18- to 25-year age range are most likely to misuse these drugs,” says Dr. Ramin Mojtabai, a professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and senior author of the study. A common scenario is this: A […]
April 10, 2016

Insurers Hire Social Workers To Tackle The Opioid Epidemic

For many people struggling with opioid use, a key to success in recovery is having support. Some are getting that support from an unlikely place: their health insurer. Amanda Jean Andrade, who lives west of Boston in a halfway house for addiction recovery, has been drug- and alcohol-free since October. It’s the longest she’s been off such substances in a decade. She gives a lot of the credit for that to her case manager, Will — who works for her insurance company. “Having Will is the best thing in the world for me,” Andrade says. “Because if I have the […]
April 10, 2016

Doctors Often Fail To Treat Depression Like A Chronic Illness

Depression prompts people to make about 8 million doctors’ appointments a year, and more than half are with primary care physicians. A study suggests those doctors often fall short in treating depression because of insurance issues, time constraints and other factors. More often than not, primary care doctors fail to teach patients how to manage their care and don’t follow up to see how they’re doing, according to the study, which was published Monday in Health Affairs. Those are considered effective tactics for treating chronic illnesses. To read more from SHEFALI LUTHRA
April 10, 2016

Is It Really A.D.H.D. or Just Immaturity?

New research shows that the youngest students in a classroom are more likely to be given a diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder than the oldest. The findings raise questions about how we regard those wiggly children who just can’t seem to sit still – and who also happen to be the youngest in their class. To read more from KJ DELL’ANTONIA  click here.
March 9, 2016

Addiction As A Chronic Medical Condition

The question of effective treatment for alcohol- and substance-use disorders is more pressing than ever. According to a recent article in The New England Journal of Medicine, the number of Americans admitted to treatment programs for prescription opioids more than quadrupled from 2002 to 2012. Deaths from heroin overdoses nearly quadrupled from 2002 to 2013, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported. In addition, an estimated 18 million Americans have alcohol use disorder, according to the N.I.A.A.A., and a study published in JAMA last year found that the number of Americans who drank to excess was rising. To read more […]
February 11, 2016

A Drug To Cure Fear

WHO among us hasn’t wanted to let go of anxiety or forget about fear? Phobias, panic attacks and disorders like post-traumatic stress are extremely common: 29 percent of American adults will suffer from anxiety at some point in their lives. Sitting at the heart of much anxiety and fear is emotional memory — all the associations that you have between various stimuli and experiences and your emotional response to them. Whether it’s the fear of being embarrassed while talking to strangers (typical of social phobia) or the dread of being attacked while walking down a dark street after you’ve been […]
January 7, 2016

What if people could be more efficient and productive during the time they are at work?

The self that typically serves us best is regulated through our parasympathetic nervous system. That is when our prefrontal cortex – our thinking mind – runs the show. In this state, we’re capable of making choices logically and reflectively, and we tend to feel in reasonable control of our destiny. Our second self is regulated by our sympathetic nervous system. The amygdala – a more primitive part of the brain — takes charge. This self is characterized by fight or flight. It takes over reactively and automatically when we’re feeling a sense of vulnerability and threat, most commonly to our […]
December 22, 2015

In Age of Digital Records, Paper Still Carries Weight

The rush to electronic information was prompted by the best intentions. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, “using electronic health records will reduce paperwork and administrative burdens, cut costs, reduce medical errors and most importantly, improve the quality of care.” Paper has become our lingua franca, our fallback and standby. In our new digital universe, we have peculiarly seen a retro explosion of paper. We may no longer write paper prescriptions, but we fax or hand-deliver paper versions of our electronic dealings routinely now. When you don’t know what electronic language the receiver speaks (and you never do), […]
December 15, 2015

Do Sleeping Pills Induce Restorative Sleep?

There is quite a bit of evidence about the negative health consequences of insomnia, but researchers don’t know precisely what it is in the brain and body that is “restored” by sleep to aid optimal function. And it is unlikely that any specific stage of sleep is uniquely restorative, said Dr. Daniel J. Buysse, a sleep medicine expert and professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh. More sleep, less interrupted sleep, and sleep at the right time of night are all likely to be important, he said. To read more….
November 6, 2015

Parenthood, Survey Say’s, It’s Stressful

The difficulty of balancing it all. Working parents say they feel stressed, tired, rushed and short on quality time with their children, friends, partners or hobbies. That tension is affecting American family life. Fifty-six percent of all working parents say the balancing act is difficult, and those who do are more likely to say that parenting is tiring and stressful, and less likely to find it always enjoyable and rewarding. For example, half of those who said the work-family balance was not difficult said parenting was enjoyable all the time, compared with 36 percent of those who said balance was difficult. […]
November 3, 2015

When A Patient Want’s to End Therapy

The analytic method, of course, does not involve telling people what to do but rather helping them understand themselves. The analogy is timeworn: Give a person a fish and she’ll eat for a day; teach her how to fish and she’ll eat forever. But the truth is that people are sometimes very hungry and their hunger needs immediate attention. Sometimes a person must eat before she has the energy to do anything else. (And anyway, maybe the fish aren’t biting that day, or she has no money for bait.) Muriel Dimen, a psychotherapist in New York, is the editor, most […]
October 27, 2015

Learning to Deal With the Impostor Syndrome

We know what the feeling is called. We know others suffer from it. We know a little bit about why we feel this way. And we now know how to handle it: Invite it in and remind ourselves why it’s here and what it means. For me, even after six years of sharing these simple sketches with the world and speaking all over the world, you think I’d be used to it. In fact, the impostor syndrome has not gone away, but I’ve learned to think of it as a friend. So now when I start to hear that voice […]
October 20, 2015

New Research Finds Talk Therapy Can Ease Schizophrenia

The drugs used to treat schizophrenia, called antipsychotics, work extremely well for some people, eliminating psychosis with few side effects; but most who take them find that their bad effects, whether weight gain, extreme drowsiness, or emotional numbing, are hard to live with. Nearly three quarters of people prescribed medications for the disorder stop taking them within a year and a half, studies find. More than two million people in the United States have a diagnosis of schizophrenia, and the treatment for most of them mainly involves strong doses of antipsychotic drugs that blunt hallucinations and delusions but can come […]
October 13, 2015

Anorexia May Be Habit, Not Willpower, Study Finds

A new study suggests that the extreme dieting characteristic of anorexia may instead be a well entrenched habit or behavior governed by brain processes that, once set in motion, are inflexible and slow to change. The study’s findings may help explain why the eating disorder, which has the highest mortality rate of any mental illness, is so stubbornly difficult to treat. But they also add to increasing evidence that the brain circuits involved in habitual behavior play a role in disorders where people persist in making self-destructive choices no matter the consequences, like cocaine addiction or compulsive gambling. Read more […]
September 24, 2015

Try Drawing Without Looking At The Paper.

This technique, I later discovered, is a classic intro-­to-­art exercise called “blind contour drawing.” Freshmen at art school are forced to draw blindly for hours. It’s the fastest way to break them out of old bad habits, to make them unlearn lifeless conventions. The goal of blind drawing is to really seethe thing you’re looking at, to almost spiritually merge with it, rather than retreat into your mental image of it. Our brains are designed to simplify — to reduce the tumult of the world into order. Blind drawing trains us to stare at the chaos, to honor it. It […]
September 24, 2015

How To Foster Inauthenticity

Nobody is shocked to learn that everybody’s Instagram is a lie. Even the most laissez-faire point-and-shoot photographer is constructing an aesthetic and a narrative with the pictures she chooses to post. The subject matter, the geotags, even the filters you tend to use are all in the service of a particular self-presentation – after all, if you didn’t have something to prove, you’d just save your photos privately instead of dressing them up and propping them in front of an audience. There’s nothing wrong with this, any more than there’s something wrong with dressing or behaving in a way that […]
July 24, 2015

Can nature change our brains in way’s that affects our emotional health?

A walk in the park may soothe the mind and, in the process, change the workings of our brains in ways that improve our mental health, according to an interesting new study of the physical effects on the brain of visiting nature. Brooding, which is known among cognitive scientists as morbid rumination, is a mental state familiar to most of us, in which we can’t seem to stop chewing over the ways in which things are wrong with ourselves and our lives. This broken-record fretting is not healthy or helpful. It can be a precursor to depression and is disproportionately […]
July 15, 2015

Beneficial Bacteria For Mental Health, Who Knew!

The idea that fermented foods — including yogurt and kefir — are good for us goes way back. But could the benefits of “good bacteria” extend beyond our guts to our brains? Now, researchers are turning their attention to our emotional health. It turns out that there’s a lot of communication between our guts and our brains. Bacteria used to be the thing we had to eradicate, but people are now realizing that many kinds of bacteria provide a benefit. So it’s a paradigm shift, a massive shift in our thinking. To read more on this fascinating article from NPR.
June 22, 2015

When you’re engaged in an activity you truly enjoy, you’re happy.

Many reasons have been proposed for why leisure has beneficial health effects (e.g., improving stress coping, reducing stress, promoting relaxation responses, reducing boredom). Although the specifics of these theories vary, a common element that many share is proposing transactional or in-the moment effects of leisure. That is, these theories propose within-person explanations for its effects; for example, stress is reduced because leisure confers some positive relaxation benefit. To read more on this study by Matthew J. Zawadzki, Ph.D. & Joshua M. Smyth, Ph.D. & Heather J. Costigan, B.S.
June 15, 2015

Pathogens On A Plane: How To Stay Healthy In Flight

Who knew that the air vent was helpful. A few pointers for staying physically healthy while traveling, which certainly can’t hurt when working on your mental health! 1. Sanitize your hands: Bring aboard a sanitizing gel with 60 percent alcohol, Gendreau recommends. Use the sanitizer before you eat or drink. And then use it after you wash your hands in the airplane’s bathroom. Water on planes has a dirty record. 2. Blow away airborne microbes: To keep from catching a pathogen in the plane’s recycled air, use the vent above your head. Set the ventilation at low or medium. Then […]
June 15, 2015

Aristotle On The Roots Of ‘Madness’

It’s an idea from the ancients. The philosopher Aristotle famously opined that genius and madness go hand in hand. Psychiatric studies have to some degree supported the adage. Studies of more than 1 million Swedish people in 2011 and 2013 found that people who had close relatives with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder were much more likely to become creative professionals. (The patients with mental illness were not themselves more creative, with the exception of some who had bipolar disorder.) Kay Redfield Jamison, a clinical psychologist at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine wrote this article for NPR, to read more.
June 13, 2015

Babies have a fairly sophisticated understanding of human emotion

A very interesting study on infant behavior and development by Sabrina S. Chiarella and Diane Poulin-Dubois, at ScienceDirect.com: The current study examined how 18-month-old infants react to a “stoic” person, that is, someone who displays a neutral facial expression following negative experiences. Infants first watched a series of events during which an actor had an object stolen from her. In one condition, infants then saw the actor display sadness, while she remained neutral in the other condition. Then, all infants interacted with the actor in emotional referencing, instrumental helping, empathic helping, and imitation tasks. Results revealed that during the exposure phase, […]
June 13, 2015

How To Write A Country Song

This NY Times Magazine  article by Malia Wollan has nothing whatsoever to do with therapy, psychiatry, adult ADHD, addiction etc. (you get the picture), but it was fun to read and made me think about different approaches to people feeling better. Geography matters, but authenticity matters more. Country is honest. Your lyrics should tell your story; no matter how dull it may seem to you, it will be novel to others.  We’re all born different, that’s what we got in common. While lyrics don’t have to be 100 percent factual, they should be based in the particularities of on-the-ground experience. Even someone […]
June 12, 2015

Mood Disorders

Almost everyone experiences at least brief periods of sadness, feeling “down”, or being energetic and upbeat at various points in his/her lifetime. That’s just part of being human. However, there’s a significant portion of the population that has disturbances in their mood that are not considered normal. Individuals in this group have what is clinically referred to as a “mood disorder”. While many people use the term “mood” to simply refer to their feelings at any given moment (e.g. “I’m in a happy mood”), mental health professionals use it a bit differently. In clinical settings, it is used to describe […]
June 12, 2015

Individual & Family Therapy

The skills of the family therapist thus include the ability to influence conversations in a way that catalyses the strengths, wisdom, and support of the greater system. The goal of marital and family therapists is to improve relationships between marital partners or family members, or to help with the dissolution of a difficult relationship with minimum harm to all. Family therapy, also referred to as couple and family therapy, marriage and family therapy and family counseling is a branch of psychotherapy that works with families and couples in intimate relationships to nurture change and development. As dysfunctional behaviors are acquired […]
June 12, 2015

Adult ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder)

ADHD symptoms often include an inability to focus, disorganization, and restlessness. Adults with ADHD may have a hard time organizing things, listening to instructions, remembering details, or difficulty completing tasks, which can affect their relationships at home, school, and work. People who have ADHD may exhibit different symptoms, and they may experience them at different levels of severity, ranging from mild to significant impairment. Proper diagnosis relies on a comprehensive clinical evaluation by a health professional, who will take into account personal history, self-reported symptoms, and mental-status testing, as well as  early development problems and symptoms of inattention, distractibility, impulsivity, […]
June 10, 2015

Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety is a disorder marked by excessive, irrational fear and dread. Experiencing occasional anxiety & depression is a normal part of life, something everyone faces at some point. Feeling anxious because you have a job interview or before taking an exam or making an important decision are all very common. For some people, however, anxiety becomes so frequent and overwhelming it begins to interfere with their daily life; this is when it would be a good time to see a Psychiatrist and talk about solutions (good news: anxiety can be treated!) How do you know what “normal” is and when […]
June 10, 2015

Depression

Everyone occasionally feels sad or down, but these feelings are typically short-lived and pass within a few days. A diagnosis of depression means the sadness is persistent and interferes with your daily life; it causes pain for you and your loved ones. Many people with anxiety & depression never seek treatment, but it is vital to get help because depression is treatable. Depression is marked by persistent feelings of hopelessness, sadness, and fatigue, among other things. It is important to go to a Psychiatrist and get a proper diagnosis because often times the symptoms of depression can mirror those of […]
June 9, 2015

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

PTSD can occur at any age, including childhood. Women are more likely to develop PTSD than men, and there is some evidence that susceptibility to the disorder may run in families. Anyone can get PTSD at any age. This includes war veterans and survivors of physical and sexual assault, abuse, accidents, disasters, and many other serious events. Not everyone with PTSD has been through a dangerous event. Some people get PTSD after a friend or family member experiences danger or is harmed. The sudden, unexpected death of a loved one can also cause PTSD. It is important to remember that […]
June 9, 2015

Psychiatric Consultations

A psychiatric consultation is a comprehensive evaluation based on your psychological, biological, medical, and social causes of distress. Dr. Ditzell will work with you to review current and past stressors, along with any relevant lab work and medical records to come up with a feasible, appropriate treatment plan. The initial consultation is typically 45 minutes in length, and consists of the patient’s history, symptoms, and goals in seeking treatment. Dr. Ditzell will make recommendations for treatment based on this initial consultation, and may request lab work to determine possible options for treatment. It is important to remember that the issues […]
June 9, 2015

DSM Codes Explained

About DSM-5 Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) is the standard classification of mental disorders used by mental health professionals in the United States and contains a listing of diagnostic criteria for every psychiatric disorder recognized by the U.S. healthcare system. The previous edition, DSM-IV-TR, has been used by professionals in a wide array of contexts, including psychiatrists and other physicians, psychologists, social workers, nurses, occupational and rehabilitation therapists, and counselors, as well as by clinicians and researchers of many different orientations (e.g., biological, psychodynamic, cognitive, behavioral, interpersonal, family/systems). DSM is used in both clinical settings (inpatient, outpatient, partial hospital, consultation-liaison, clinic, […]
June 4, 2015

Buprenorphine for office-based treatment

Buprenorphine is a controlled medication that requires the physician to have specialized training in order to write the prescription. Dr. Ditzell went through the training and obtained his license to prescribe and monitor Buprenorphine. He has extensive experience working with patients to overcome their substance abuse issues and prescribes Buprenorphine when it is clinically relevant to do so, having seen success with many of his patients utilizing this treatment modality.
June 4, 2015

Medication Management

Medication management includes the initial evaluation of a patient’s need for psychotropic medications, prescribing and monitoring prescriptions, and ongoing monitoring, evaluating, and adjusting the prescribed medication. It is common that patients are over/under medicated and it is important for ongoing monitoring of medications because the ideal dose can change over time. With medication management, Dr. Ditzell will monitor the effectiveness of the prescribed medications, as well as the side effects (if any) and weigh the patients’ options. If the medication is not working effectively, adjustments will be made. At Dr. Ditzell Psychiatry we will sometimes utilize Assurex’s GeneSight test to […]
May 30, 2015

Noise Machines & Insomnia

The Dohm, the quintessential therapists noise machine. The calming hiss of the Dohm signals that the room has been reset, but can it help with insomnia? To be both digitally tuned in and concerned with your own well-being is to constantly suspect you’re powerless to stop your self-destructive behavior. It’s a suspicion that’s easy to ignore from moment to moment or day to day, but it grows heavier when considered cumulatively, and heavier still in the middle of the night. Like some kind of exorcist, the Dohm has the power to ease this burden and calibrate the room for a new mode, […]
May 27, 2015

Anxiety has become emblematic of the current generation of college students

According to this very interesting New York Times article, anxiety has now surpassed depression as the most common mental health diagnosis among college students. Depression, too, is on the rise. More than half of students visiting campus clinics cite anxiety as a health concern, according to a recent study of more than 100,000 students nationwide by the Center for Collegiate Mental Health at Penn State. Click here to read more….
May 23, 2015

Psychotropic medications, therapy and relaxation techniques don’t help everyone

The fact is that we are all walking around with a random and totally unfair assortment of genetic variants that make us more or less content, anxious, depressed or prone to use drugs. Some people might find it a relief to discover that they had a genetic variant that made them naturally more anxious — that they were wired for anxiety, not weak — even if right now there is no exact fix. To read more on the Feel Good Gene….
May 22, 2015

Adults with ADHD can have a higher risk of addiction

Self medicating, or numbing our feelings using substances to calm our anxious brains is a common issue among adults who are suffering with ADHD. There have been some studies that suggest that ADHD patients may experience altered dopamine responses, meaning that they would feel less “normal” pleasure. Not everyone with ADHD will develop an alcohol or substance abuse problem, but for those that do, special treatment options are designed. To read more on this article, please click here.
May 22, 2015

Speed Bumps on the Way to an A.D.H.D. Diagnosis

Undiagnosed, A.D.H.D. can wreak havoc on relationships, finances and one’s self-esteem. Adults with the disorder are twice as likely as those without it to be divorced, for instance, and four times as likely to have car accidents. It’s no surprise that they also tend to have poor credit ratings. To read more on this subject, please click here.
May 14, 2015

The practice of office-based buprenorphine treatment of opioid dependence

Is it associated with new patients entering into treatment? A very interesting study regarding office-based buprenorphine treatment. The results of the study suggest that office-based treatment of opioid dependence is associated with new types of patients entering into treatment. Treatment outcomes with buprenorphine in a PCC do not vary based on history of prior methadone treatment. Please click here to continue reading this study.
May 14, 2015

What is GeneSight Testing?

GeneSight is a genetic test that helps healthcare providers take a personalized approach to prescribing medicine for patients. Because genes influence the way a person’s body responds to specific medications, they may not work the same for everyone. Using DNA gathered with a simple cheek swab, GeneSight analyzes a patient’s genes and provides individualized information to help healthcare providers select medications that better match their patient’s genes. To read more about GeneSight, click here.
April 28, 2015

Substance Abuse

Alcoholism and addiction are undoubtedly the most stigmatized and misunderstood illnesses in our society. Addiction is a chronic condition and should be treated as such; it occurs when the substance being abused changes the chemical activity in your brain. Any drug can be abused, from prescription medications to alcohol and illicit drugs. While illicit drugs are abused any time they are used, prescription medications are considered abused any time they are used in a manner other than as intended. People begin to abuse substances for any number of reasons, and often times substance abuse is a comorbid disorder. The high […]
April 22, 2015

Why is Dr. Ditzell better at treating Adult ADHD?

Adult ADHD is often a comorbid disorder, meaning it frequently occurs in conjunction with other ailments such as anxiety, depression, or substance abuse. Dr. Ditzell has been specifically trained in comorbid disorders and specializes in treating these co-occurring conditions. If you or someone you know is exhibiting these behaviors, it may be undiagnosed Adult ADHD. Give us a call and we’ll get you in to see Dr. Ditzell right away.
April 22, 2015

How Dr. Ditzell is an Adult ADHD Psychiatrist

What is Adult ADHD? Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder can look much different in adults than it does in children. Many times adults recognize their behavior or patterns as problematic, but attribute them to stress, a lack of sleep, or other things going on in their lives, when in fact they may very well be symptoms of Adult ADHD. There is a lot of misunderstanding when it comes to ADHD, but the simple truth is that it is a real issue for many adults and can cause unnecessary problems if left untreated. Diagnosing Adult ADHD can be critical to happiness and […]