Document 6575398


Document 6575398
SUNDAY, FEB. 26, 2012
February is Psychology Month
Treatment across the Lifespan
The changes we face, the life we live Keys to adapting
able, and some may not. Few
changes affect people in the same
By Stillman Jacquard
Ph.D., Cand Reg.
person says it regularly. It is
written across yearbook
pages, on greeting cards, via
text messaging, in conversation:
“I love you just the way you are,
don’t ever change.”
The fact of the matter is we
change all the time. Change is
continuous. Perhaps what is
different now is the pace of
change. Times have changed.
Throughout our lives, we are
placed in positions where we
must manage change, and attend
to our resistance to change. Resistance to change is natural. We
hear about (and are sometimes
bombarded by) political, cultural,
climatic, and environmental
As we develop and grow, we
come to realize that some change
may be both necessary and desir-
“It’s not so much that we are
afraid of change or in love with
the past…but it is that place in
between that we fear…It is like
being caught between trapezes.
It is Linus when his blanket is
in the dryer – there is nothing to
hold on to.”
– Marilyn Ferguson, Futurist
As we move throughout our
lives, we witness remarkable
differences in the abilities of
people to cope with the changes
that confront them. Some have
difficulty in dealing with challenges which others would consider
to be minor. The fact is some
people appear more resilient than
This raises the question of why
these differences occur. In order
to address this question, it is
important to understand what
people find stressful, and this
may vary based on the person’s
developmental coping style. A
person’s coping style is influenced by cultural factors, gender,
socio-economic status and current environmental factors.
Adapting to ever changing
times can be exhilarating, and
can be overwhelming. Change
can result in positive stress and/
or negative stress. Depending on
where we are in our lives, life
challenges can occasionally provide us with mental health issues.
When people are demonstrating
symptoms of mental health problems they should be referred to
mental health professionals, who
can assess the presenting condition.
“Life is change. Growth is
optional. Choose wisely.”
- Karen Kaiser Clark
Adapting to change through our
lifespan requires thoughtfulness
and understanding, attending to
how we think and feel and in
turn how we behave through
transitions. As we move
through our lives, it would serve
us well to consider the following:
■ Change is natural.
■ People transition through
change at different speeds.
■ People sometimes get stuck.
■ Remember that you are important to the change process, try
to stay positive, manage your
stress, and look after yourself.
There are strategies that can
- Communicate. Be clear on
what is changing and also on
what is not changing.
- Formulate a plan.
- See the situation from another viewpoint.
- Focus on opportunities for
- Build capacity for future
- Practice continuous learning
and understand your environment.
■ Life challenges can lead to
mental health issues. Explore
how mental health professionals can be of service to you.
Provided by Stillman Jacquard
New baby, new challenges
By Jessica Driscoll
Nova Scotia
Board of Examiners
in Psychology
What is a psychologist
and why do I care?
treat children, adults, couples, families
diagnose psychological and
emotional problems
consult, counsel, provide therapy
and assessments
consult to individuals, groups,
help people attain better physical
and mental health
help people achieve better personal,
social and vocational adjustment
teach and apply psychological theory
and principles
design, conduct and communicate
psychological research.
Only individuals registered with the Nova
Scotia Board of Examiners in Psychology
are entitled to use the term, “Psychologist”,
or to provide “psychological services,” by
virtue of the Psychologists Act of Nova
The Nova Scotia Board of Examiners in
Psychology (NSBEP) protects the public.
The NSBEP has the statutory authority
to register and regulate practitioners of
psychology by way of the Psychologists
Act. The Act also enables the prosecution
of anyone holding him/herself out as a
provider of psychological services who
is not registered with the NSBEP.
Psychologists meet specific requirements
for education, examinations, and
supervision. Psychologists have at least
these qualifications:
a doctoral or masters degree in
two years of supervised experience,
in the case of a doctoral degree, or
four years, in the case of a masters
have passed a standardized, written
examination and an oral examination.
Psychologists (Candidate Register) have
the same educational qualifications and
are in the process of completing their
supervised experience.
Psychologists are licensed professionals
and that is important because licensing
protects the public. Licensing holds
professionals to rigorous standards and
makes them accountable.
“Psychologist” is a title protected by a law
that governs the practice of psychology in
Nova Scotia.
It is important to know that many terms
are not licensed titles. For example,
the term “psychotherapist” and
singular terms such as “counsellor” and
“therapist” are not licensed titles. There
is no assurance of the qualifications of
anyone using only these titles and no
regulatory body to handle complaints
about their practices.
Entering parenthood is one of
life’s major transitions, often
representing a shift in priorities
and a change in identity for new
mothers and fathers. Becoming a
parent is described by many as
life’s greatest joy. However, parenthood also comes with a unique
set of challenges, including, but
not limited to, sleep deprivation,
potential financial strain, hormonal changes for a new mother,
changes in familial and partner
relationships, feelings of a loss of
independence or identity, and
feelings of being overwhelmed
with new parenting responsibilities.
Research suggests that] as
many as 50 per cent to 80 per
cent of new mothers experience
symptoms of the “baby blues”
following the birth of a child as a
result of those challenges. Often
those experiences are eased by
familial and community support,
the establishment of routine, and
a gradual adjustment to new and
shifting roles and responsibilities.
In contrast, Statistics Canada
estimates that approximately 10
per cent to 15 per cent of new
mothers will suffer from postpartum depression, a more serious and potentially debilitating
illness which includes symptoms
such as depression and low
mood, tearfulness, guilt, poor
concentration, detachment from
baby, irritability, and forgetfulness.
Postpartum depression can
often go undiagnosed or is wrongly assumed to be a normal part of
adjusting to parenthood, but the
effects of postpartum depression
on a new mother, a new baby, and
the family can be serious. Often it
is a mother’s family and support
system that are able to identify
symptoms in a new mother and
can encourage her to receive
treatment. Psychological services
offer a means for both proper
diagnosis and effective treatment
of postpartum depression as well
as support for families affected
by the same.
An important difference between
a psychologist and unregulated
practitioners is that extended healthcare benefits will pay for a psychologist’s
services but will not pay for services by
unregulated practitioners.
Psychologists are required by law to deliver
competent, ethical and professional
services. They are accountable to the
public, through the NSBEP. Psychologists
meet rigorous professional requirements
and adhere to prescribed standards,
guidelines and ethical principles. They
must also follow requirements for
maintaining competency throughout their
You are protected when you see a
psychologist because psychologists must
adhere to the Canadian Code of Ethics for
Psychologists, and Standards for service
and conduct, which are established by
the NSBEP. The NSBEP is responsible for
protection of the public and investigates
and addresses complaints against
Psychologists. There is no such public
protection for practitioners designated
only by such terms as counsellor, therapist
or psychotherapist.
Any questions?
For more information please visit the Board’s
website. The website includes a Directory
of Psychologists allowing you to locate a
psychologist by name, address, language(s)
of service, and area(s) of practice.
Ph.D. R. Psych
If you are unsure about whether the
person you are seeing is a psychologist,
or have any concerns about the
ethical conduct of a psychologist,
contact us:
The Nova Scotia Board of Examiners in Psychology
(902) 423.2238
Parenting for resilience
By Lynne Robinson
Ph.D., R.Psych., APNS President
Parenting children from infancy
through adolescence is a tough
job. It brings more joy and more
frustration than any other occupation. We all want our children
to be resilient, to be able to
‘bounce back’ from life’s challenges and changes, no matter what
they may be. Psychologists have
done extensive research on resiliency and we know that it is a
“process, not a state of being,” as
psychologist Carl Rogers has
All of us continually develop
our resiliency throughout our
lifespan, but parents can give
their children a head start in this
process by improving their own
resiliency and by parenting for
resiliency. Resilient people of any
age are optimists; they see the
glass as “half full.” Optimistic
parents, especially mothers, can
nurture that way of thinking by
talking optimistically themselves,
even in difficult times. Resilient
children are able to be both comfortable dealing with others and
comfortable in being independent. Such capacities come from
parents who get along well with
each other and show their children how to resolve conflict
when it arises. They support
children in making their own
decisions whenever this is reasonable, from encouraging a
three year-old to choose the colour of her socks to negotiating
household chores with 15 yearolds. Such parents encourage
their children to succeed within
the limits of the child’s capacities
and support the child in succeeding. They focus on their child’s
strengths and not weaknesses.
We also know that resiliency is
nurtured not just in families but
in our communities and school
systems. When we build trust and
hope rather than fear in our communities, and build in support
systems of all sorts for families,
we create the communities that
help parents be more resilient.
These parents raise more resilient
children who, in turn, create the
resilient communities that the
research confirms are better for
our mental and physical health.
SUNDAY, FEB. 26, 2012
February is Psychology Month
Treatment across the Lifespan
A state of
■ Mental health is more that
the absence of mental illness.
Mental health is a state of
well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own
potential, can cope with the
normal stresses of life, can
work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a
contribution to her or his own
World Health Organization
Estimates suggest that, in
any given year, about one in
every five people living in
Canada will experience diagnosable mental health problems or illnesses. These can
occur at any time of life, affecting infants, children,
youth, adults, and seniors.
■ Being mentally healthy
involves having both a sense
of coherence that helps people to function well despite
the challenges they confront,
and the resiliency to bounce
back from setbacks.
Mental Health Commission
of Canada, 2009
Transition from adolescence
to young adulthood
By Joanne Mills
R.Psych. Coordinator of
Counselling Services at MSVU
For many young people, navigating the transition from adolescence to adulthood can be
difficult. It may mean moving out
of their homes and/or their communities, changing peer groups,
accepting more responsibilities,
and for many, attending postsecondary programs.
For some students, the pressures of post secondary life can
be very stressful and the realities
of the competitive job market and
slumping economy hits hard.
According to the Canadian Mental Health Association 18 – 24
year-olds have the highest incidence of mental health disorders. Thus, many post-secondary students may experience their
first episode of a mental illness
during their time at school.
Student mental health concerns
are becoming a major issue for
universities and colleges all over
North America. On-campus counselling centres and health offices
are busier than ever, and housing
staff are dealing with increasingly
serious mental health issues in
Mental health concerns have
ranged from social anxiety and
eating disorders to depression
and suicide attempts. Some students face short-term crisis, recover quickly and resume classes
and enjoy a full campus life. Others, however, are challenged with
a range of issues, need intense
and long-term care, and struggle
with their academic work. Many
university and college campuses
have free and confidential counselling services for students and
recognize that students may
require support from qualified
staff to help them succeed and
navigate this tricky transition
time in their lives.
Olga Komissarova
Registered Psychologist # 0625
What’s new in child
psychology today
Spring Garden Road Memorial Public Library
Tuesday, Feb. 28, 7 p.m.
Dalhousie researchers present recent findings: autism
spectrum disorder, treatment of
children with behaviour problems and sleep problems in
Over 40 and overwhelmed:
Caring for aging parents
By Leah Clyburn
Ph.D., R.Psych.
Increasing longevity and life
expectancy have contributed to a
higher number of elderly persons
with chronic health conditions
who are in need of caregiving by
family members.
This and other socio-demographic trends mean it is now
more likely than ever that middleaged adults (particularly women)
are in the precarious position of
juggling childcare, employment,
and caring for aging parents.
Although caregiving can be a
very rewarding role, the psychological risks of caregiver burden
have been well documented and
can include depression, anxiety,
guilt, resentment, and social
The following suggestions can
help prevent and manage the
effects of caregiver stress:
■ Be informed: You will feel more
confident and prepared the more
you educate yourself on your
loved one’s illness, as well as the
signs of caregiver burnout (e.g.,
persistent sadness, feeling overwhelmed, decreased interest in
previously enjoyed activities,
Genest MacGillivray
Our psychologists offer evidencebased counselling and therapy
specialties for adults, adolescents,
couples and families.
Please Call: 492-2546
[email protected]
5739 Inglis Street, Halifax
Be realistic and avoid the guilt
trap: You cannot be the “perfect”
caregiver nor do it all. Feeling
overwhelmed and needing a
break is natural.
Broaden your support network:
Ask for and accept help. It is
simply unrealistic to assume the
entire burden of care in isolation.
Be prepared with a list of ways
others can help you.
■ Seek professional help: A psychologist can help determine the
psychological impact of the caregiving and assist in navigating
through its challenges. Also consider joining a support group or
seek respite care when needed.
P.O. Box 833
Chester, Nova Scotia BOJ 1JO
Tel: (902) 277-0566
Fax: (902) 275-2032
[email protected]
Safe Passage
Helping families
navigate separation and divorce
Phone/Fax: 440-6204/421-1733
e-mail: [email protected] •
33 Octerloney, Ste.145
Dartmouth, NS B2Y 4P5
Exercise your right to take care
of yourself: You cannot take care
of anyone else without taking
care of you. Your ability to help
will diminish if you do not attend
to your own health and wellbeing. Engage in relaxation, exercise, meditate, find a hobby, get
out of the house whenever possible, and plan activities you can
look forward to.
Psychological Services for Children, Adolescents and Adults
6960 Mumford Rd, Ste.2140
Halifax, NS B3L 4P1
feeing constantly worried, poor
sleep, feeling tired most of the
time, and increased irritability or
Sessions start in March 2012
for details:
Higgins, PhD
Dr. Carolyn Humphreys, PhD
Laurie Tracey, MA
Joann Doran, MA
Pamela Swainson, MA
Sara Angelopoulos, MA
(902) 455-9939
for children, adolescents
& families. Comprehensive
assessment, diagnostic and
treatment services.
Dr. Kiran Pure & Associates
90 Portland Street, Dartmouth, NS B2Y 1H6
Phone 902.444.3669 Fax 902.444.3665
Dr. Leah Clyburn,
Now accepting referrals for my
Clayton Park Professional Centre
Suite 204, 255 Lacewood Dr., Halifax
Ph: (902)440-7528
Dr. Kathy Hubley Carruthers
Counselling & Psychological Services
Adolescents • Adults • Couples • Families
Therapy • Media1on • Psychological Assessment • A2en1on & Learning Screeners
Tel: (902) 407-1234
Fax: (902) 407-1235
1st Floor, 1331 Brenton Street
Halifax, Nova Scotia
B3J 2K5
Email: [email protected]
(for bookings only)
• Treating adults with a variety
of mental health concerns
• Specializing in Anxiety Disorders
Flexible day and evening appts available
We offer services to Children, Adolescents,
Families, Adults, and Seniors. Our Assessment
and Treatment Services are fully described on
our website:
Or call 466-0469 to learn more about how
we may help you.
145-33 Ochterloney St.,
Dartmouth Nova Scotia B2Y 4P5
[email protected]
P: 902-466-0469 F: 902-466-5926
[email protected] · 422-9183
a n d
Providing a
wide range of
counselling and
dietetic services.
Fax: 404-3963
1278 Bedford Hwy.,
Bedford, NS B4A 1C7
• Kevin Rice, M.A.
• Kathrine Lincoln, M.Sc.
• Kelly Brushett, M.Sc., RMFT
• Marcia Voges, Ph.D.
• Joanna Buisseret-McKinnon, M.A.
• Giselle Ellefsen, M.Sc.
• Barbara Fox, Ph.D.
• Mark Russell, M.Sc.
• Victor Day, Ph.D.
• Carlye Smith-MacKenzie,
M.A.S.P. (Cand. Reg.)
• Lina Crossin, M.A. (Cand. Reg.)
• Lauren Marsh-Knickle, M.Sc.
• Angela Dufour, MEd, PDt,
IOC Grad Dip Sports Nutr, CFE