Adults may seek individual psychotherapy when experiencing the following issues:
Anxiety, depression, relationship stress, separation, divorce, mood swings, bipolar disorder, panic , phobias, social anxiety, life transitions, job stress, loss of loved one, stress due to medical illness or injury, sleep problems, substance abuse, eating disorders,(anorexia and bulimia), weight management, PTSD: Post traumatic stress disorder, trauma, OCD (obsessive compulsive ), Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Treatment for child behavioral problems begins with an initial meeting with parents to acquire a developmental history. Parents often seek treatment for the following problems: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), learning disabilities (reading difficulties, math difficulties, writing problems), developmental delays, aspergers, autism, anger, aggression, peer conflicts, separation anxiety, school phobia, depression, sad mood, adjustment problems, sibling rivalry, parent-child conflict, defiance, oppositional, school suspension, running away, suicidal gestures, self-mutilation, sleep problems, sleep terrors, enueresis, social skills.
Treatment for adolescents ages 12 years old to 18 years old requires a specialized approach in which the parent is initially involved to allow the therapist to acquire a developmental history and assess family interaction problems. The adolescent may meet with the therapist with a confidential agreement and right to privacy unless they are engaging in risky behaviors at which point the parent or guardian will be informed. Parental participation is paramount such that the parents are strongly urged to meet with the therapist on a regular basis to participate in treatment in a conjoint manner. This ensures appropriate interaction, communication and understanding between all parties to accomplish effective treatment.
Adolescent treatment issues include the following: depression, bipolar, anxiety, panic, phobia, obsessive compulsive (OCD), irrational thoughts and behaviors, aggression, oppositional behavior, defiance, running away, school truancy, suicidal gestures and ideation, legal infractions, substance abuse, self-esteem issues, self-mutilation, cutting and burning, eating disorders (anorexia and bulimia), weight management, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), learning difficulties (reading, writing, math), family problems, post traumatic stress disorder PTSD), trauma, loss, grief, step parenting and blended families, separation, custody disputes, visitation conflicts.
Couples counseling and marital therapy enables the couple to address issues of communication, understanding, and listening in a supportive environment. Couples are encouraged to learn new healthy patterns of interaction, both verbally and behaviorally, to assist them in developing and maintaining a productive, growing, committed and satisfying relationship for life. Couples often seek counseling to assist them with the following: communication difficulties, intimacy, emotional expressiveness, alternatives to separation or divorce, promoting family cohesiveness and cooperation, cooperative parenting, affairs, conflict resolution, sexual difficulties, balancing relationships and family responsibilities, time management to enhance couple intimacy and satisfaction, improve marital satisfaction, couple enrichment, strengthening partnership and committment, improving the quality of life as a couple, enhancing romantic love, learning to prioritize the marriage, couples communication assessment, exploring patterns of interaction, the development of healthy patterns of communication and behavior for new couples as they strive to build a strong foundation of love, learning how to speak with respect and understanding with their partners, avoiding abusive and toxic interactions.
Family therapy utilizes a group format in which all members of the family meet in a neutral supportive environment mediated by a skilled family therapist. Treatment goals often focus on enhancing communication and understanding between family members to evoke a positive change within the family. Families often seek treatment for the following issues: parent and child conflicts, ineffective parenting strategies, blended families, sudden changes and adjustments to family structure, problems dealing with teenagers, inlaw disputes, reintegration of grandparents or college students returning to live at home, substance abuse, family roles and responsibilities, dealing with impact of medical illness, injury, impact of unemployment, loss of a parent.
Effective treatment requires competent and comprehensive assessment and diagnoses.
Testing and evaluation may be indicated if a patient is experiencing unremitting depression, severe anxiety, personality changes, co-morbid conditions unresponsive to treatment, and or any other difficulties that may require differential diagnoses.
Patients seek psychological and neuropsychological evaluation for the following possible diagnoses: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), learning disabilities, reading disorder, writing disorder, math disorder, language disorder, Asperger’s disorder, autism, developmental delays, cognitive impairment, memory and concentration impairment due to illness, accident, aging, closed head injury, intellectual functioning determination, school assessments and achievement testing for grade level placement, IEP’s (individual educational plan) , gifted and talented assessment and placement, personality assessment and differential diagnoses of personality functioning and disorders, sensori-motor integration issues, perceptual motor disturbances, preop bariatric testing and evaluation.
Attention Deficit Disorders in children and adults clearly effect performance in school and the work place. ADD may result in lower self-esteem and self worth, anxiety, depression, and interpersonal conflicts with family, friends, and co-workers. Effective treatment requires competent and appropriate assessment. The Center’s computer assisted diagnostic protocols will evaluate you or your child. The Center’s board certified psychiatrists can provide rapid medication solutions in conjunction with behavioral strategies and support from psychologists working as a team with you and your child.
Patients often benefit from a combination of therapy and medication, which synergistically enhance the response to both therapeutic and pharmacological intervention. The use of therapy and medication has been shown to be significantly more effective than the use of therapy or medication alone. This strategy is often the most effective approach for the treatment of the following: depression, anxiety, panic, ADHD, Bipolar Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and other treatment issues. The Center offers coordinated care between the therapists and the psychiatrists on staff to ensure a comprehensive and integrative medicine approach for patients.
Patients seek Forensic Evaluation for the following : when facing legal proceedings with respect to violations of the law for driving under the influence (DUI), competency to stand trial, misdemeanor and felony offenses, school suspension for aggressive behavior, arrested for theft or aggressive offenses, shoplifting, possession of controlled substances, assault, and other offenses. Forensic Psychological Evaluations may provide mitigating evidence to assist in defense and make alternative sentencing recommendations. Patients may be referred by attorneys or the court system. The Center provides pretrial and posttrial therapeutic care.
Our forensic program assists criminal defense attorneys in areas that include: criminal competency, criminal responsibility, DUI-DWI and substance abuse assessment, insanity defense, recommendations for therapeutic and rehabilitative programs and alternative sentencing.
A full psychodiagnostic evaluation provides a clinical history and an assessment of intellectual and personality function, analysis of substance abuse, impulse control, sexual concerns executive function, organic issues, characterological concerns to present an integrated evaluation of the individual.
Psychological and neuropsychological evaluations add valuable data in the mitigation phase of criminal proceedings by allowing the court to understand issues of personality dynamic, impulse control, dangerousness, amenability to treatment, adjustment to incarceration and concerns with respect to recidivism. The use of standardized test instruments, in a carefully constructed psychodiagnostic test protocol may allow for alternative sentencing, appropriate therapeutic interventions and reduction of sentences.
Expert witness testimony is provided by Dr. Ken Ellis, a licensed psychologist and former Chief Psychologist for the Maryland Department of Corrections. Dr. Ellis has been qualified as an expert in psychology in the state and federal systems.
For those patients who are unable to travel to the Columbia Counseling Center or prefer to engage in a therapeutic relationship in the privacy of their own home or other private setting, online therapy may be the treatment format to meet your needs. Technology enables us to conduct video conferencing from anywhere in the world allowing you continuity of care with your therapist as needed.
To schedule an online therapy appointment, contact the front desk at (410) 992-9149.
Women’s Support Group offers women the opportunity to discuss a variety of issues involving relationship conflicts, social isolation, depression, loss of a partner, transitions such as reentry to the work setting, empty nest, and life adjustments.
Men’s Support Group offers men the opportunity to discuss a variety of issues involving partnership conflicts, committmemt, juggling work and family responsibilities, adequacy issues, and an opportunity to connect with other males struggling with similar issues with a male mediator and group leader.
Social Skills Groups for children and adolescents address peer relationships, coping with ADHD, anxiety, self-esteem, self- concept development, blended family issues, parent conflicts in a safe peer environment with a skilled group therapist.
Patients may be self referred or referred by inpatient programs including Saint Joseph’s Hospital or Sheppard-Pratt who require outpatient follow-up treatment. Patients often present with a variety of degrees of eating disordered behaviors such as binge eating, restricting, purging, obesity, unhealthy eating habits with improper nutrition, and weight management issues including bariatric surgery preoperative and post operative needs for evaluation and treatment.