My therapeutic approach arises from an integration of cognitive-behavioral and systems theory. Put simply, I use a multifaceted theoretical approach that allows me to recognize that my clients’ thoughts and behavioral patterns are developed within the context of their family, school, and socio-cultural settings. Using this approach, I pay particular attention to developing an evidence-based, culturally sensitive course of treatment and collaborate with providers across settings to develop a comprehensive assessment and treatment plan.
I specialize in working with children and adolescents with OCD and a broad range of anxiety disorders (social anxiety, specific phobias, generalized anxiety, school refusal and avoidance, etc). I have rigorous training in providing evidence-based treatments for complex presentations of anxiety among children and adolescents with ASD and other developmental disabilities. With my background in School Psychology, I have expertise in supporting mental health needs of children in the school settings and partnering directly with school providers on IEPs and 504 accommodation plans. I am passionate about involving family and community systems because I believe that a systemic
approach to therapy helps to address the mental health needs of the whole client.
In relation to anxiety, I see that while sometimes anxiety can be our friend and it can protect us from dangerous situations (i.e., true alarm), elevated levels of anxiety can be impairing, and it can come in the way of us enjoying our daily activities (i.e., false alarm). My role as your therapist is to help you distinguish between your true and false alarms and help you overcome your anxiety by coaching you to face your fears head on. I realize that facing your fears can be scary and I never ask my clients to do anything that I wouldn’t do myself.
Additionally, I have specialized training in working with parents of children with anxiety disorders. I use an approach that is rooted in research and shows how changes in parents' own behaviors can help decrease their children's anxiety symptoms. I offer parent training that focuses on helping parents discern between healthy protection versus accommodations for their children's anxieties. Moreover, I firmly believe that while I maybe an expert on anxiety, parents are an expert on their children's anxiety! Thus, parent involvement in treatment of anxiety disorders can play a crucial role in helping clients manage their anxiety symptoms.
I also have expertise in parent focused approaches and in implementing evidence-based treatments for challenging behaviors. As a parent myself, I realize that while parenting can be one of the most wonderful experiences, it can also feel overwhelming and stressful at the same time. I offer parent behavioral training for challenging behaviors among young children that is rooted in decades of research. This approach focuses on using positive reinforcement strategies to shape challenging behaviors and promoting social emotional development of children.
I enjoy collaborating with my clients to understand their treatment goals and I focus on goals that directly impact my clients’ functioning in the real world. When working with young children and adolescents with anxiety, I often involve caregivers as part of therapy to help with generalization of treatment strategies across settings. Also, I provide my clients with weekly assignments to practice skills between sessions so that they can use the learned strategies in everyday life. My emphasis in the therapy process is compassion, connection, and humor.