Therapeutic Services & Specialized Treatment
I currently provide services either in person or via televideo for those clients who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. For clients who are not fully vaccinated, services will be limited to televideo at this time. If we decide to work together via televideo, I will provide you with instructions on how to access me using a secure platform.
I enjoy providing general psychotherapy for a wide range of common concerns. I have experience treating a number of common symptoms involving depression, anxiety, and relationship problems. I also have a great deal of experience treating more severe diagnoses such as Bipolar Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). My general treatment approach is summarized in the paragraphs just below. I also have intensive training and many years experience treating Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, and Substance Use Disorders – my approach to the treatment of these problems is summarized further down on this page. I choose these techniques both because they are effective and because they tend to work quickly. These are techniques I can teach to you so that you can continue to apply them to future problems on your own. Feel free to read more about these techniques below.
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) has decades of research supporting it’s effectiveness with a wide variety of problems and diagnoses. While using these techniques, you and I will examine the component parts of your symptoms such as emotions, behaviors, and thoughts. We’ll then examine how these parts are connected and how they impact each other. I’ll help you create changes to one or more of these parts to achieve your desired symptom relief. These techniques are generally considered to be among the most efficient and effective available to psychologists.
Mindfulness practices have a very significant body of research supporting their effectiveness. You can see these techniques widely advertised in popular culture both because of their usefulness and because of how easily they can be understood. Mindfulness practices involve learning how to open our awareness, focus our attention, and allow reality. However, understanding something intellectually is different from successfully implementing it. I can help you by providing individualized intervention and assistance to aid you in developing the ability to practically implement these practices so you can achieve the desired benefits.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) was developed for use with more severe symptoms and has decades of research supporting it’s effectiveness. A traditional program in DBT is intensive and involves one year of weekly group and individual therapy which is something that I used to provide for many years, but no longer do. Instead, the services I provide would be ideal for someone who struggles with more severe symptoms yet may not require a full DBT program, or someone who has already graduated from a traditional DBT program and wants help implementing these techniques over the longer term. These techniques involve skills in the areas of mindfulness practice, relationship skills, regulating mood swings, and managing intense distress.
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) often creates very painful symptoms and is something for which I use a therapy called Prolonged Exposure (PE). In this therapy, we will revisit traumatic situations, process painful emotions, and change unhelpful beliefs you may have about the world and about yourself. These painful memories, emotions, and beliefs are resolved through a process called exposure. PTSD often urges people to avoid situations that you previously found to be safe and enjoyable because they are now perceived as dangerous. The process of exposure to painful emotions and situations takes the place of the avoidance behavior and facilitates the transformation of these situations back to feeling safe and enjoyable. This is one of my favorite treatments to provide as I have witnessed many people reduce severe symptoms rather quickly.
Significant reduction in PTSD symptoms is generally accomplished in about 10 sessions, along with roughly 60 minutes of homework per day. Prolonged Exposure is one of the most widely researched treatments available for PTSD and has been shown to work pretty well for most people. It is the treatment of choice for PTSD within the Veteran’s Administration (VA), and is effective for all types of traumas and painful events.
Not only have I enjoyed practicing this treatment for many years, but I have also been certified as a consultant by the clinic that created the therapy (The Center for the Treatment and Study of Anxiety). This means I am certified to provide ongoing consultation to clinicians who are in the process of learning the treatment. Additionally, I’m part of a regular peer consultation group during which I provide and receive feedback on my therapeutic work by other experienced professionals who are also using the therapy.
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) can be a very debilitating set of symptoms and is something for which I use a therapy called Exposure and Response Prevention (ExRP or ERP). This therapy is widely considered to be the most effective treatment for OCD available. During this therapy, I will teach you how to approach situations that create obsessive thinking (e.g., “The door handle has dangerous germs”) and emotional distress (e.g., fear of being contaminated by those germs). Healing is achieved using a process called exposure (e.g., touching the door handle). In OCD, emotional distress often leads to compulsive behavior (e.g., ritualized handwashing). I will teach you how to approach those distressing situations with something called response prevention. This means I will show you how to resist acting on urges to engage in your compulsive behavior. The result is the ability to be in these situations with significantly less distress and without overwhelming compulsive urges (e.g., you’ll be able to touch door handles). People with OCD are typically amazed at what they can achieve through this therapy.
ExRP (or ERP) sessions are utilized in conjunction with 20-60 minutes of homework each day. The more homework you’re willing to do, the faster your symptoms will reduce. Due to the sometimes crippling nature of OCD, sessions may need to be conducted outside of the office such as at home or in public settings. The total length of treatment will highly depend on your symptom severity and the frequency of sessions which can be held twice weekly for faster results.
Substance Use Disorders
Substance Use Disorders are ones which I have several years of experience treating. I use a combination of therapeutic approaches such as Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Mindfulness practices, and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) all with the goal of achieving the needed symptom reduction. These techniques are generally considered to be among the most efficient and effective interventions available to psychologists with respect to changing addictive behavior. (Please note the brief descriptions of these therapeutic approaches at the top of this page) Typically, those with severe addictions will require a lifetime goal of sobriety while those with more mild addictions may acquire the ability to practice “controlled use” of chemicals. We will do a careful assessment of your symptoms so that effective goals for treatment can be established.
LGBTQ+ issues are ones which are close to my heart as I am a gay-identified man. I use a combination of therapeutic approaches such as Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Mindfulness practices with the goal of helping you develop into the LGBTQ+ person you want to be. (Please note the brief descriptions of these therapeutic approaches at the top of this page) LGBTQ+ people share many unique experiences (e.g., stigma, rejection, alienation) due to their sexual orientation and gender identity. The symptoms that result from those experience are often more accurately understood by a psychologist who has shared in those experiences. This understanding facilitates greater affirmation and validation of your needs. With this approach, I’m able to help you in deeper and more effective ways to facilitate your self-development and to achieve your desired symptom relief.
Consultation for Mental Health Professionals
Consultation for other mental health professionals is a service that I have been providing for a very long time and one that I enjoy very much. Consultation can take a variety of shapes and can involve several different techniques (e.g., direct feedback, live observation, behavioral rehearsal). Goals can vary, but I often help people build new skill sets to establish initial competency or enhance existing skill sets to refine or specialize their abilities.
I have 12+ years overseeing the development of therapists-in-training at all levels (practicum, predoctoral internship, and postdoctoral fellowship). I currently hold the position of Training Director at a separate group private practice which is a role that I very much enjoy. Finally, I’m a certified consultant regarding the provision of Prolonged Exposure (PE) for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder through the Center for the Study and Treatment of Anxiety at the University of Pennsylvania.
There are many areas in which I am able to consult and will include those listed on this page: Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), exposure-based interventions such as Prolonged Exposure (PE) and Exposure and Response Prevention (ExRP or ERP), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), and mindfulness-based interventions. Diagnoses which I have particular experience treating and providing consultation include: Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), Substance Use Disorders (SUD), LGBTQ+ Issues, and general depression/anxiety/mood disorders.