Therapy Metairie, La. Counselors, Metairie, LA. Individual counseling, marriage counseling, family counseling, group therapy

Alphabet soup: What do all of those letters mean behind my therapist’s name?

First, what is the difference between a license and a certificate?

A license is generally determined by a state regulated board to ensure the public that a person is qualified to do their field of work. The idea is to protect the public with requirements, qualifications, application process and a code of ethics.  A certificate is to safeguard that the holder is up to date with best practices in the profession and to unite the field though standards of those in the counseling profession.

Here is a list of some common acronyms in the helping field (some vary by state): 

LPC – Licensed Professional Counselor
A Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the state of Louisiana this counselor has met state requirements allowing them to legally be recognized as a counselor including a Master’s degree and 3000 hours of supervision.

NCC- National Certified Counselor
A National Certified Counselor (NCC) has completed educational requirements set by the National Board for Certified Counselors and passed a standardized test for Counselors.

CI- Counselor Intern
A Counselor Intern (CI) has a Master’s degree and is under supervision of a Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor as they work towards meeting the Louisiana State licensure hour requirements for a Licensed Professional Counselor.

LMFT- Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
A Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) has a Master’s degree specifically geared toward marriage and family and has significant experience working with this population.

LAC- Licensed Addiction Counselor
A Licensed Addiction Counselor (LAC) has earned a masters degree and has completed 2000 hours of supervision.

CAC- Certified Addiction Counselor
A Certified Addiction Counselor  (CAC) has earned a bachelors degree and has completed 4000 hours of supervision.

RAC- Registered Addiction Counselor
A Registered Addiction Counselor (RAC) has a high school diploma and has completed 6000 hours of supervision.

CIT- Counselor in Training
A Counselor in Training (CIT) is actively pursuing a career as a Certified Addiction Counselor, Licensed Addiction Counselor or Registered Addiction Counselor.

LPC-S- Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor
A Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor (LPC-S) is able to supervise counselor interns as they work towards licensure.

CRC- Certified Rehabilitation Counselor
A Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC) has earned a Master’s degree and serves people with disabilities.

For more information: 

Louisiana Professional Counselors Board of Examiners
http://www.lpcboard.org 

Louisiana Addiction Regulatory Authority
http://www.la-adra.org 

National Board for Certified Counselors
http://www.nbcc.org/Certification-Licensure 

Rebecca Waltner, M.Ed, CI, NCC

 

Medication Management – Helping You Get Better Faster

Optimize Treatment Efficacy

medication-management-metairie-therapyPsychotherapy in combination with medication is the most effective treatment for the majority of children and adults with a variety of disorders.

Be Your “Normal Self” Sooner

Our in-house Medical Psychologist can provide both therapy and medication, thus optimizing treatment efficacy without you having to pay two doctors. Medication can reduce symptoms of distress more rapidly. Not only are you likely to feel more like your “normal self” sooner, but to sleep better, think more clearly, handle normal frustrations more easily, be less irritable, and make faster progress in therapy.

In-house Medical Psychologist

Our Medical Psychologist can prescribe your medications, even if you already have another therapist.

Find out more about our Medication Management services today.

Five Things to Tell Yourself to Relieve Feelings of Social Anxiety

How can I overcome Social Anxiety?

Whether we are obligated to go to office parties, or we choose to attend New Year celebrations, we are often faced with situations in which we need to be “social.” For those who struggle to feel comfortable in those situations, here is a list of five phrases that either help to ground the user in the present or reminds the user of their own power.

 

  1. I’m going to this event to have fun. Fun is healthy! –Sometimes we give ourselves a hard time about having fun. Like we’ve somehow not earned it or deserve it. When we feel this way, we are dooming ourselves to a more anxious time.
  2. What other people think is none of my business. – If we can let go of the anxiety that comes with worrying about what others think, we may just have enough time to keep thinking about #1 up there.
  3. No one deserves my criticism without earning it. – It would be hypocritical to force ourselves to not be critical of others at times, but did they actually EARN the criticism? That is, would you want to be judged as harshly as you might be judging another?
  4. Every day is a chance for me to make the decision that I’m confident. – It makes no sense that we may believe an “old dog” can’t learn new tricks. We most definitely can. And in that vein, we can decide that we are going to do all we can to emote confidence today. Done.
  5. No one is perfect, and the world would be a really boring place if they were. – If we never lose, we never know the joy of winning. Acceptance of oneself is the best gift.

 

So, the next time you are looking in the mirror and thinking “ugh,” or the next time you are invited somewhere and tempted to go to the old “I can’t this time” excuse, try talking a little to yourself and see what happens!

 

If you are having difficulty with this and you don’t think you can handle it on your own, help is available. Call 985-624-2942 to make an appointment with one of our qualified therapists at either our Mandeville or Metairie locations! – Micah P. Hatchett, Ph.D., LPC-S, NCC

 

Why am I so Anxious?

Feelings of anxiety are normal.

People who are not normally anxious may be experiencing some changes in their lives that can contribute to anxiety. A move, a job change, concern for the future, a change in family obligations, or a change of family members are all examples of normal life changes that can evoke feelings of anxiety and distress.

If you are experiencing any (but not limited to) the following symptoms, perhaps it is time to assess whether anxiety is beginning to play a bigger role in your life than you realize.

Examples of how anxiety is beginning to wear out its welcome in you can look like:

  • Crying and depressive symptoms
  • Physical pain/symptoms (headaches, racing heart, upset stomach, tics)
  • Inability to complete tasks and concentrate

Cognitive-behavioral therapy is especially helpful when a person encounters excessive anxiety. This type of therapy enables the client to collaborate with the therapist about what
thoughts and dysfunctional methods of thinking contribute to feelings of anxiety. These reasons can be anything from long-standing family of origin issues, trauma, or can be related to contextual situations the person is currently experiencing. For more information about anxiety-related disorders, visit http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/anxiety-disorders/index.shtml. If you would like to begin therapy for excessive anxiety, call us at our Northshore (Mandeville) or Southshore (Metairie) locations to make an appointment.

Micah P. Hatchett, Ph.D., LPC-S, NCC
Clinical Director, Northshore & Southshore Counseling & Wellness

How is couples counseling for same-sex couples different from opposite-sex couples counseling?

For the most part it’s not. Same-sex couples deal with many of the same issues in couples therapy that opposite-sex couples do. Most couples come across the common issues of sex, finances, household duties, and family. The need to learn better communication skills, learn the art of conflict resolution and compromise, recognize and break dysfunctional patterns, and find ways to reconnect or stay connected are all common things dealt with in couples counseling for all couples.

Good communication is a two way street and the ultimate goal should be to better understand your partner.

That said, there are some issues that are unique to same-sex couples. Being a member of the LGBTQ community poses its own unique set of challenges that are bound to leak over into your relationships. As a same-sex couple, you may be faced with a lack of acceptance by family or friends, and on a larger scale, a lack of acceptance by society in general. Issues may arise in trying to navigate through the decision to come out to family and friends. Couples deal with feelings of anger, hurt, and frustration over not being allotted many of the same privileges that straight couples are granted. The desire to become a parent also presents its own unique set of obstacles for same-sex couples who wish to fulfill that desire.

  • Keys to a better same-sex relationship
    • learn better communication skills
    • learn conflict resolution
    • recognize dysfunctional patterns
    • reconnect in new ways

Even the happiest and healthiest of couples run across difficult times. All of these things, and many others, can be addressed in couples therapy so that you can gain the coping skills and strategies needed to deal with any common or unique issues that arise and pose a challenge to your relationship. When going through a difficult time in your relationship, one of the most effective ways to start the mending process is implementing basic healthy communication skills. The key to good communication is to really listen to what your partner is expressing to you and then attempt to understand their perspective. Often times we are so concerned with trying to get our point across, that we forget to take the time to hear what our partner is trying to communicate to us. Good communication is a two way street and the ultimate goal should be to better understand your partner. If you are both working to understand each other, real work can be done to better your relationship.

Priscilla Hurd, LPC, NCC

Ready to get to work? Call us! 985-624-2942

Northshore & Southshore Counseling and Wellness offering Counseling and Therapy in Mandeville and Metairie

Northshore & Southshore Counseling and Wellness has a second location in Metairie to provide individual, family and group therapy for New Orleans, Metairie, Kenner and the surrounding areas. Our office on Metairie Road is easy to reach from Uptown, Downtown, or Metairie.

Appointments are available for new clients as well as for the convenience of existing clients from our Mandeville location who work or are frequently in the Metro New Orleans area.

If you are a resident of the Greater New Orleans area seeking counseling for marriage, family, relationships, addiction, bipolor disorder, collaborative divorce, medication management, assessment for ADHD, ADD or PTSD, schedule an appointment by calling or contacting our therapy office today.

Northshore and Southshore Counseling & Wellness, Metairie Location:

433 Metairie Road
Suite 309
Metairie, LA 70005
(504) 717-4043
(map)

Dr. Andre, Why do I have a quick temper?

Why do i get mad so quickly?

A quick temper is often a result of being parented by one or both parents who had a quick temper.

In order to be more level in one’s response there would have to have been models of that behavior in your early environment. If both of your parents were able to handle their anger in a healthy way and you still find your self with a quick temper then there is probably some kind of trauma that caused the temper. If something happened in your life that was a great injustice or extremely frightening and you didn’t have help to handle it, then anything that reminds you of the incident could trigger an anger response. It might seem irrational to you but there is always an underlying cause that can be tracked down.

Does group therapy help anger management? Groups are very helpful. First you get to meet other people who are dealing with the same problem and it helps the feeling of being alone with the problem and you have people who understand what you are going through and who you can talk about your issues with. Hearing a lot of different people talk about their anger helps you to understand more about your own anger and having a lot of people giving how they deal with their anger gives you different things to try in your own life.

-Submitted by Counselor Chris DesJardins, M.Ed., CI

Contact us today in Metairie or Mandeville for help with anger management therapy.

Do I have a Dissociative Disorder?

Dissociative Disorders are those psychological disorders characterized by a person’s tendency to dissociate, or “check out” mentally.  Of course, we all dissociate in small ways, such as when read something and then don’t remember what we just read, or when we drive somewhere without remembering getting there.  While this level of dissociation is normal, the frequency and intensity of dissociation is much higher in that group of disorders.  Conditions such as Multiple Personality Disorder, now called Dissociative Identity Disorder, are real.  The ability of the brain to dissociate is a coping mechanism, a way of blocking out or sectioning off certain information to attend to other information.  When someone has a dissociative disorder, they have a need to block out such an overwhelming amount of information that dissociation is their primary coping skill in life.  People who have undergone severe trauma have a higher likelihood of dissociative disorders.

…characterized by a person’s tendency to “check out” mentally

In everyday life, a common place to see problematic dissociation (although not at the level of being a disorder) is in rage and domestic violence.  Sometimes people become so angry that they are physiologically and/or psychologically overwhelmed, and the mind dissociates.  This creates a situation where the angry person “blacks out” or does not remember what occurred.  In another example, people experiencing high levels of stress or anxiety might say or do something they don’t remember.

…a common place to see problematic dissociation is in rage and domestic violence.

Therapy can be effective when dissociation is problematic, such as in the anger example, and when there is an actual dissociative disorder.  In therapy, we help clients learn to handle the stress or anger (or other trigger) without actually blocking information from consciousness.

We are located in Metairie (504) 717-4043 or Mandeville (985) 624-2942. Call us for information on how to deal with dissociative disorders.

Dr. Andre Sagrera Judice, Ph.D., LPC, LMFT, DCEP

Dr Andre, What is Collaborative Divorce?

Collaborative Divorce is a team-based process with the purpose of providing a non-litigious and efficient process for couples who are divorcing.  It is structured very differently than what most people think of in a traditional divorce process.  There are 6 team members trained in the process: two attorneys, two therapists who serve as coaches, a therapist who serves as a child specialist, and a financial planner.  These professionals are trained to guide each person in the couple through to a “win-win” resolution of all matters related to the divorce while avoiding any court involvement.

..a non-litigious and efficient process for couples who are divorcing

The couple is assisted in working out their own custody arrangements and financial outcomes within the legal constraints in Louisiana.  This allows them to keep control over their outcomes, as opposed to a judge making such decisions.  Additionally, the process allows the matter to remain private, which is often important to business people who don’t want their financials to become part of public record and available to others such a business competition.  Another benefit is that, because each person has a supported voice in the process, the agreements reached are ones that both people can live with for the long-term, which greatly decreases the likelihood of revisiting custody or other matters well after the divorce is final.

…a “win-win” resolution of all matters related to the divorce while avoiding any court involvement.  

Some people have questions about the cost of this process as compared to traditional divorces.  While there are more professionals involved in a Collaborative Divorce, this does not mean the cost is higher.  Less time is required of the attorneys, who typically have the highest fees.  Attorneys also are not spending time sitting in courts waiting for your case to be heard, which can be a large expense.  The coaches and financial professional spend the majority of the time with the couple in order to work prepare them for productively moving through the important decisions and minimizing attorney time.  Therefore, time is not lost in conflict, disagreements, or court time.  The team can flex the use of the professionals to the specific needs of the couple, thereby streamlining costs.

Clients of the Collaborative Divorce process experience an effective and productive working environment in which all parties are assisted to remain neutral and both people’s concerns are addressed.  This process helps take the “drama” out of divorce.

Want to know more about what is collaborative divorce? Call our office for an appointment. We’re located in Metairie (504) 717-4043 or Mandeville (985) 624-2942

 

-Andre Sagrera Judice, Ph.D., LPC, LMFT, DCEP