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October is National Depression and ADHD Awareness Month

by Gonzalo Laje, MD, MHSc, FAPA - Director



Depression


Depression is the leading cause of disability in the US among people ages 15-44, it ranks among the top 3 workplace issues and contributes to a whopping estimated economic loss of over 200 billion dollars. Depression is also closely tied to suicides, the second leading cause of death in ages 15-44, and the reason 250,000 people become suicide survivors each year. Depression is, arguably, an illness that causes a lack of hope and motivation, an internal state where despair reigns. It is painful and debilitating for the individual, and for those that love them. The good news is that we have treatment options to help. It is estimated that 80% of people who seek treatment experience some improvement within 4-6 weeks.


Traditional treatment plans help improve symptoms in a majority of depressed patients. However, some people may require a more complex treatment using specially managed medication or non-invasive brain modulation. These people experience Treatment-Resistant Depression (TRD).


We are experienced with the TRD medication, Esketamine, that requires a registry and special management. SPRAVATO® (esketamine) CIII Nasal Spray is indicated, in conjunction with an oral antidepressant, for TRD and suicidality in adults. Esketamine, which was approved by the FDA in 2019 to treat TRD, is not like other antidepressants, which often take four to six weeks to take effect - esketamine is effective within hours. Esketamine is administered in the office and requires a minimum of two hours of monitoring post treatment.


Another treatment option we use for TRD is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS). TMS is a noninvasive procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate brain cells to improve symptoms of depression, OCD, and other emotionally debilitating diagnoses. TMS uses magnetic pulses to induce small electrical currents in the brain cortex. These magnetic pulses occur at a specific frequency that either stimulates or inhibits the brain region they target. TMS has been typically used when other treatments haven’t been effective. TMS Therapy is FDA approved for Treatment-Resistant Depression and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and may also aid in the treatment of Anxiety, chronic pain, and PTSD, and in supporting Autistics and ADHD’ers who experience troubling coexisting symptoms, among other uses.

ADHD Support

ADHD stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. An ADHD person has differences in brain development and brain activity that, along with many positive brain changes that allow for gifts like creative problem solving, can affect attention, the ability to sit still, and self-control in both children and adults. Our providers can help identify and provide support for ADHD'ers.


To identify ADHD’ers, a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation may be completed by our highly trained licensed neuropsychologists and psychologists.

For each of these evaluations, findings and recommendations are data driven, evidence-based, and personalized for use in the individual’s ‘real world’ of school (including curriculum based and standardized testing), work, social interactions, and home living. Recommendations rely on utilizing strengths to support vulnerabilities, and referrals are offered based on individual needs.


Parents and caregivers looking for alternatives to ADHD medication for children aged 7-12 struggling with unwanted ADHD traits have a new option: The Monarch eTNS (external Trigeminal Nerve Stimulation) System by NeuroSigma. The Monarch eTNS is a small device that sends electrical impulses to the Trigeminal nerve, the largest nerve in the brain, which activates areas in the brain associated with ADHD. The device is only available through a prescription. The treatment is FDA approved and is used at home under adult supervision.


Therapy can also support ADHD’ers and their families. We provide highly personalized therapeutic care for children, adolescents, adults, and older adults, along with parent and family support. Together, our psychiatrists, neuropsychologists, psychologists, and psychotherapists offer specialized support for whole-brain and whole-person health. Contact us today at office@wbma.cc


New Tele-health Groups forming-Registration closing soon

Art Therapy Group “Making Connections"

Thursday 6-7:30pm, 6 weeks commitment. (18+)

with Anna L. Mills ATR-BC, LCPAT, LPAT, ATCS

Virtual sessions. In this small group setting (max. 8 people), participants will use the creative process to ‘make connections’ that support the changes they wish to see in their life! Creative prompts will be used to explore and identify old patterns that may not be serving them currently. The art process and image will be used to open up new understanding in order to improve coping, relationships, decision making, and identifying what patients value, which can increase happiness. This unique group combines art therapy, Mindfulness Practices, and ACT for a comprehensive opportunity for personal growth and development.


Parent to Parent: This Isn't What I Expected

Time TBD (A Postpartum Therapeutic Support Group)

with Dr. Kathryn Jankowski, LMSW


A therapeutic support group for new parents experiencing challenges adjusting to parenthood, including postpartum depression and anxiety. This group offers a safe, non-judgmental space to connect with new mothers/gestational parents and talk about shared feelings and experiences. Parents will learn evidence-based clinical strategies for addressing negative thoughts and feelings, in addition to coping skills and self-care strategies. This group will meet

weekly for 1.5 hours over 7 weeks. Babies (and breastfeeding) are welcome!

Middle School Support Group

Mondays 4:30pm (Middle School)

with Dr. Jaclyn Halpern


Female-identifying participants will explore emotional regulation, stress management, and techniques to manage anxiety, sadness, and anger, improve relationships, and navigate life's pressures.


For more information please email: hello@wbma.cc.