A diagnostic evaluation is the first step in identifying patient concerns, establishing a diagnosis(es), and developing an individualized treatment plan. Evaluation strategies depend on the individual’s age and presenting complaint, and may consist of a psychosocial interview, a diagnostic evaluation, questionnaires, observations of parent-child interactions, and school observation. Ongoing assessment may also be used to systematically track progress throughout the course of treatment.
Based on a diagnostic evaluation, a treatment plan is developed and accounts for an individual’s developmental stage, family context, personal preferences, and the evidence-based treatment techniques pertaining to the individual’s symptoms. The recommended treatment approach for anxiety and related disorders may involve a combination of cognitive and/or behavioral techniques and medications (when indicated). Treatment may be delivered in an individual, parent, or family format. Current evidence suggests that parental involvement in youth treatment can positively impact outcomes. In addition, there are times when parent/caregiver treatment sessions, without the identified child patient, are appropriate.
The Child Anxiety Prevention Program is an empirically-supported program based on family-based CBT for reducing the risk of developing an anxiety disorder for children and adolescents who are considered at-risk. A leading risk factor for developing problems with anxiety is having a parent with excessive anxiety. This program addresses modifiable risk factors that reside in the individual child, parenting behaviors, and family environment. Results from our studies found that significantly fewer youth developed a new anxiety disorder over a 12 month period, compared to youth who did not receive the prevention program. The program consists of 8 weekly sessions and 3 monthly booster sessions during which our clinicians teach family members the skills needed to reduce and prevent problematic anxiety.
Consultation & Professional Development
We are committed to ongoing training, consultation, and dissemination of empirically-supported treatments with other mental and medical health practitioners. Below is a brief description of some of the services offered:
Consultation and Supervision: We offer consultation and clinical supervision services on an as needed basis for other mental health professionals.
Inservice Training: This training (How to identify and help children with anxiety) is offered to schools, teacher and parent groups, religious organizations, child advocacy groups, physicians, and mental health providers. One and two-hour seminars are available and CEUs may be earned.
Workshop Training for Mental Health and Primary Care Providers: This CBT training program is intended for primary care professionals interested in brief and effective interventions for youth with anxiety. Group and individual three hour training seminars are available.