Tag Archives: Mental Health

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) CARETAKER groups forming SOON! (Omaha, NE)

Do you suffer from MS?  Do you know someone, a friend or a family member, that has had to endure the MS diagnosis?  Do you know someone who is “just tired” of dealing with the circumstances that accompany this degenerative disorder?

We are here to help. Anticipated group every 1st and 3rd THURSDAY of the Month, 6:00PM-8PM (tentative, will be solidified shortly)
Hosted by : Daryl Kucera of MS Fast Forward.

Phone:  402-330-6292

8802 S. 135th St.  #300
Omaha, NE  68138

Professional Facilitated by Kent Brooks, MS, PLMHP of Community Chest Counseling, PSC

Anticipated Start Date: Mid October

Maximum number of participants per group = 12

COST: Donations only~

Call for more info:

Daryl Kucera 402-330-6292

Kent Brooks 402-889-6509

Quick Definition of Mental Health

In looking at mental health criteria I came across this definition.  From an article in the Encyclopedia of Public Health, titled Mental Health says:

Dianne Hales & Robert Hales define mental health as the capacity to think rationally and logically, and to cope with the transitions, stresses, traumas, and losses that occur in all lives, in ways that allow emotional stability and growth.  In general, mentally healthy individuals value themselves, perceive reality as it is, accept its limitations and possibilities, respond to its challenges, carry out their responsibilities, establish and maintain close relationship, deal reasonable with others, pursue work that suits their talent and training, and feel a sense of fulfillment that makes the efforts of daily living worthwhile.  (Rosenfield, 2002, p. 2)

I think this definition supports what is written in the “Psychopathology Defined in Context” because in this document one requirement of mental health is “being able to function comfortably on a day-to-day basis”.  I understand these definitions to mean that a person who is mentally healthy will be able to progress in life within what is understood to be normal limits.  They will not have any extreme stressors that cause them to stop their mental growth because they will be able to deal with any stressors they come across productively.

This document also mentions four dimensions in which to look at mental health.  In taking a look at these dimensions, and an article from the Mayo Clinic titled, Mental health: What’s normal, what’s not, I was able to identify and recognize them.  The dimension of comfort and discomfort are, when you are comfortable, your behaviors, feelings, and thoughts are within what is considered ‘normal range’.  Excessive behaviors such as cleaning even when there is nothing to clean, or feelings that don’t seem to go away would make a person uncomfortable.  Another example of discomfort would be abnormal thoughts.  Abnormal thoughts would include believing something is controlling you, or considering killing yourself.

The next dimension mentioned in the document is efficiency and inefficiency.  All of the actions mentioned above would also demonstrate this dimension.  If the symptoms are severe enough or uncomfortable enough they would disrupt any kind of routine a person has in place, thus, causing everything to take longer or to not happen at all.

The third dimension is potential and actual.  The disruption of a mental illness causes any potential growth to cease.  Many times the person does not realize this and believes things are very different than what is actually happening.  The person’s perception is often a key factor in determining the correct treatment.

The final dimension is acculturation and bizarreness.  When a person’s behavior becomes disruptive or is considered to be out of the norm, other people’s perceptions can be used to help determine what diagnosis is appropriate.  This could be useful when the person does not see anything wrong with the way they are behaving.

Hopefully this quick look at the different dimensions of mental health will aid in the search for information on this topic.


Rosenfield, Paul J.; Stuart J. Eisendrath. “Mental Health.” Encyclopedia of Public Health.The Gale Group Inc. 2002. Retrieved September 02, 2009 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1G2-3404000537.html

Mayo Clinic Staff. (2009). “Mental health: What’s normal, what’s not.” Retrieved September 02, 2009 from MayoClinic.com: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/mental-health/MH00042

Personal Motivations for a Career in Counseling

I have a couple of different motivations for becoming a counselor.  The first one is, I know what it’s like to suffer from something you feel devastated about and to feel like you have no one on your side to help you.  I also know what it’s like to suffer from something you feel devastated about and to have a great support system.  It seems like one person should not have such a different experience when it comes to things that are happening to them or around them, but I think everyone goes through experiences where they have people who can relate, and then experiences where the people around them cannot relate at all.  When you have the support system, it is still never going to be easy, but to have someone you can talk to and tell your true feelings to, someone who won’t judge you, the healing is able to come faster.

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The second motivation I have is also my reward; I have people who often come to me so I will listen to them, and also for advice.  When they come to me and I see the light bulb come on, or they come back and say, “you know I tried that, and it’s working” or “I feel a lot better now”, it makes me feel like I’ve made a difference in that person’s world.  It makes me feel good to know that I’ve helped them in some way.  The smile or the look that someone gets when they realize it’s not too much, that they can pull through and they are not alone, that there is someone who understands.  It makes me very happy that I can be there for that person to help them come through whatever challenge they are facing at that time.

I have learned a few things about myself, one thing is that I have a talent and a purpose on this earth, and that is to help people get where they need to be.  I have also learned that I have more patience than I ever thought possible and that all the experiences I have been through in my life have been to help me understand what other people are experiencing.

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As I think about what my motivations are, I would say that I am so new to this field and even to the notion of becoming a counselor, that my motivations have not had a chance to change; I have only just found them.  I do feel that as I move along my journey my motivations will change and grow along with my goals.  If these things do not change and grow with you, then it seems you will go stale in the career and lose site of the reason you became a counselor in the first place.

State of the Mental Health Union



The first ever surgeon general’s report on the “state of the union” in mental health was issued in 1999.  David Satcher, then the reigning surgeon general, emphasized the importance of adopting a national mental health agenda that acknowledges the effect that mental illness has on public health.  He encouraged the general population to acknowledge that that mental illness is both disabling to the individual and costly to the public health system as a whole.  He advocated for increased use of differential diagnosis by emphasizing the concept that both mental health and mental illness are “points on a continuum.”  David Satcher charged us as a profession with reducing and eliminating the stigma associated with mental illness.  He also highlighted the importance of a solid research base to evaluate the practicality and effectiveness of new approaches and overall accountability to the individuals for whom the interventions are intended.  Satcher’s submission represents a blueprint for change.  It’s been 10 years since this comprehensive report. This essay will attempt to access the following question: “How have we done?”


State of the Mental Health Union


The first ever surgeon general’s report on the “state of the union” in mental health was issued in 1999.  David Satcher, (now former) Surgeon General of the United States, emphasized the importance of adopting a public health perspective, accepting that mental disorders are disabling, and seeing both mental health and mental illness as points on a continuum.  (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 1999)  He highlighted overarching themes of reducing and eliminating the stigma associated with mental illness, the importance of a solid research base to evaluate the practicality and effectiveness of new approaches, and overall accountability to the individuals for whom and intervention is intended.  (Satcher, 2000)  Satcher’s submission represents a blueprint for change.  It’s been 10 years since this comprehensive report. This essay will attempt to access the following question: “How have we done?”

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The foundation of Satcher’s public health perspective was rooted in the concept of preventive interventions.  Since 1999 we have made significant progress in developing family-focused preventative interventions (Redmond, Spoth, Shin, & Lepper, 1999) including mother and mother-child programs for children of divorce (Wolchik et al., 2000).  We have adopted an early intervention strategy and attempted to focus our preventative efforts on the individuals who have the most to gain/lose, children.  Preventative efforts focused on coping with anger and stress, family bereavement, bullying, early conduct disorder, social relations, stress inoculation, and suicide prevention are yielding significant results among school-aged children.  (Greenberg, Domitrovich, & Bumbarger, 2001; Shaw, Dishion, Supplee, Gardner, & Arnds, 2006; Weissberg, Kumpfer, & Seligman, 2003)  The underlying theory of many, if not most, of these research efforts is that “prevention programs enhance children’s socio-emotional competence and prevent the emergence of behavior problems.”  (Webster-Stratton, 2003)

Although research suggests that there are correlates of life satisfaction in those with disabling conditions, much of the work has been focused on physical disabilities as opposed to mental illness.  (Mehnert, Krauss, Nadler, & Boyd, 1990; Schröder et al., 2007)  More work remains to be done regarding overall public awareness of exactly how debilitating mental illness can be.  This is particularly true in the cases where individuals whom are heavily medicated may be more disabled by their medication than by the mental illness itself.  (Waldman, 1999)

If we consider seeing mental health and mental illness as points on a continuum a goal, then we should consider ourselves closer to that goal then we were 10 years ago.  (American Psychiatric Association, Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, 2000)  Differential diagnosis is more prominent in the DSM-IV-TR than it was in any previous revision of the DSM, and we have every expectation that we will continue to see movement towards continuum based differential diagnosis in the upcoming DSM-V.    As a profession, we can expect that the differentiation between normal psychological functioning and pathological functioning will continue to be defined, or redefined.  (Widiger & Clark, 2000)  We can expect that diagnostic categories be removed, added, merged, linked, or otherwise cross referenced to reflect the “points on a continuum” perspective.  If I could predict the specific changes we should expect I wouldn’t be here, but I can be fairly certain that we should expect change in general.

Reducing and eliminating the stigma associated with mental illness is a tall order that is constantly in the process of fulfillment.  Despite persistent efforts, anti-stigma campaigns have not yet resulted in the desired changes in public attitudes and perceptions.  (McNulty, 2004)  “Many people who would benefit from mental health services opt not to pursue them or fail to fully participate once they have begun.  One of the reasons for this disconnect is stigma; namely, to avoid the label of mental illness and the harm it brings, people decide not to seek or fully participate in care.”  (Corrigan, 2004, p. 614)  The availability of accurate information, persistent social marketing, and direct contact with the mentally ill can effectively combat the negative stereotypes associated with individuals who suffer from mental illness.  (Kirkwood & Hudnall, 2006)  Nonetheless, there is much work to be done… it is certainly a work in progress.  Furthermore, the DSM has made an effort to reduce stigma by changing verbiage.  For example, people who suffer from alcoholism are no longer referred to as “alcoholics” in an effort to focus on the disease, not the deficiency of the individual.

Nowhere have we made more progress than in the arena of developing a solid research base.  Never before in human history have individual clinicians had access to the depth, breadth, and quality of research that we have today.  This is due, in large part, to technology and the advent of reference-able online material.  Scholars are no longer required to scour books at the library in search of support… we simply find a keyword and plug it into resources like Google, ProQuest, PsycARTICLES, WilsonWeb, ERIC or MEDLINE.  The efficient dissemination of information is critical to our success as a mental health community because it prevents duplicate research efforts.  It also provides instant access to research that can justify both diagnosis and treatment modalities.

We have also made significant progress in the form of accountability.  Federal and state regulatory authorities are constantly reviewing, revising, and reinforcing quality control practices with regard to education and credentialing of mental health professionals.  (Nelson, 2007)  Despite the fact that outcome evaluation programs are becoming more common with regard to child welfare services, they are still lacking in the field of mental health as a whole.  (Wall et al., 2005)  Informed consent is now mandatory in most states, although there is a definitive lack of consistency in terms of what that informed consent document should contain, or how clearly it should be worded.  (Walfish & Ducey, 2007)

There’s more work to be done, so the progress doesn’t stop here.  Our profession is currently being assaulted by rigorous cost control efforts in the form of managed care.  Increasingly, insurance companies are making the decision what is best for clients, not their caregivers… or, if the caregivers do weigh in on the decision, it is with the constraints of a limited number of sessions or available treatments.  Although we have made considerable progress on a number of fronts, including information dissemination, accountability efforts, reducing stigmas, and prevention… all of these avenues of progress will need continued emphasis into the 22nd century in order to have a lasting effect on the profession as a whole.

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American Psychiatric Association. (2000). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (4th ed., text rev.). Washington, DC: Author.

Corrigan, P. (2004, Oct). How stigma interferes with mental health care. American Psychologist, 59(7), 614-625. doi: 10.1037/0003-066X.59.7.614

Greenberg, M. T., Domitrovich, C., & Bumbarger, B. (2001, March). The prevention of mental disorders in school-aged children: Current state of the field. Prevention & Treatment, 4(1), [np]. doi: 10.1037/1522-3736.4.1.41a

Kirkwood, A. D., & Hudnall, S. B. (2006, Oct). A social marketing approach to challenging stigma. Professional Psychology, 37(5), 472-476. doi: 10.1037/0735-7028.37.5.472

McNulty, J. P. (2004). mmentary: Mental illness, society, stigma, and research. NIMH, Schizophrenia Bulletin, 30(3), 573-575. Retrieved from http://ft.csa.com.ezproxy.bellevue.edu/ids70/resolver.php?sessid=ruib4jnm5uafkc6aefn5lthuo0&server=csaweb106v.csa.com&check=ab5542fe87c5d81a32140a205b771a50&db=psycarticles-set-c&key=SZB/30/szb_30_3_573&mode=pdf

Mehnert, T., Krauss, H. H., Nadler, R., & Boyd, M. (1990). Correlates of life satisfaction in those with disabling conditions. Rehabilitation Psychology, 35(1), 3-17. doi: 10.1037/h0079046

Nelson, P. D. (2007, Feb). Striving for competence in the assessment of competence: Psychology’s professional education and credentialing journey of public accountability. Training and Education in Professional Psychology, 1(1), 3-12. doi: 10.1037/1931-3918.1.1.3

Redmond, C., Spoth, R., Shin, C., & Lepper, H. S. (1999, Dec). Modeling long-term parent outcomes of two universal family-focused preventive interventions: One-year follow-up results. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 67(6), 975-984. doi: 10.1037/0022-006X.67.6.975

Satcher, D. (2000, Feb). Mental health: A report of the Surgeon General–Executive summary. Professional Psychology, 31(1), 5-13. doi: 10.1037/0735-7028.31.1.5

Schröder, C., Johnston, M., Morrison, V., Teunissen, L., Notermans, N., & Van Meeteren, N. (2007, Aug). Health condition, impairment, activity limitations: Relationships with emotions and control cognitions in people with disabling conditions. Rehabilitation Psychology, 52(3), 280-289. doi: 10.1037/0090-5550.52.3.280

Shaw, D. S., Dishion, T. J., Supplee, L., Gardner, F., & Arnds, K. (2006, Feb). Randomized trial of a family-centered approach to the prevention of early conduct problems: 2-year effects of the family check-up in early childhood. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 74(1), 1-9. doi: 10.1037/0022-006X.74.1.1

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (1999). Mental health: A report of the surgeon general. Retrieved from http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/library/mentalhealth/home.html

Waldman, E. (1999, Dec). Substituting needs for rights in mediation: Therapeutic or disabling?. Psychology, Public Policy, and Law, 5(4), 1103-1122. doi: 10.1037/1076-8971.5.4.1103

Walfish, S., & Ducey, B. B. (2007, April). Readability level of Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act notices of privacy practices used by psychologists in clinical practice. Professional Psychology, 38(2), 203-207. doi: 10.1037/0735-7028.38.2.203

Wall, J. R., Busch, M., Koch, S. M., Alexander, G., Minnich, H., & Jackson-Walker, S. (2005). Accountability in child welfare services: Developing a statewide outcome evaluation program. Psychological Services, 2(1), 39-53. doi: 10.1037/1541-1559.2.1.39

Webster-Stratton, C. (2003). Aggression in young children services proven to be effective in reducing aggression. Retrieved August 8, 2010, from http://www.child-encyclopedia.com/en-ca/child-aggression/according-to-experts/webster-stratton.html

Weissberg, R. P., Kumpfer, K. L., & Seligman, M. E. (2003, June/July). Prevention that works for children and youth: An introduction. American Psychologist, 58(6-7), 425-432. doi: 10.1037/0003-066X.58.6-7.425

Widiger, T. A., & Clark, L. (2000, Nov). Toward DSM—V and the classification of psychopathology. Psychological Bulletin, 126(6), 946-963. doi: 10.1037/0033-2909.126.6.946

Wolchik, S. A., West, S. G., Sandler, I. N., Twin, J., Coatsworth, D., Lengua, L., … Griffin, W. A. (2000, Oct). An experimental evaluation of theory-based mother and mother–child programs for children of divorce. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 68(5), 843-856. doi: 10.1037/0022-006X.68.5.84


A Look At The Counseling Side

It seems the Mental Health profession is still in its infancy and has been developing since 1979.  While mental health counseling was being practiced before 1979, it was at this time that members of the AMHCA, the American Mental Health Counselors Association, decided that Mental Health Counselors should be recognized as a core profession in the field.  This decision caused the members to select several steps that they felt would need to take place in order to make this happen.  The AMHCA spear headed this development piece by piece in order to ensure the continuation of each process.  They decided a membership association would be needed, they felt standards should be built on a national level so members who successfully passed would hold national certification, they had a vision that the education these members received would be accredited and training programs would be readily available.  These members also felt that licensure should be available in all 50 states and that the competencies in order to gain the licensure should be standard.

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These visions started to become reality in 1980 when certifications became available nationally and shortly after that the National Board for Certified Counselors which is now known as the Clinical Academy of NBCC or “The Academy”.  The certifications offered by this organization are completely voluntary and in 1999 around 2,000 counselors were Certified Clinical Mental Health Counselors or CCMHC’s, to date that number is over 1,000. We have gotten as far as to have license recognition in every state.  In 1999, only a handful of states had licensing or certification requirements, by 2004 licensure was recognized by 48 states, as well as in the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.  In 2007 Nevada recognized licensure and by January 2012 California counselors, both grandfathered and new will have their licenses recognized.  Getting the Mental Health Counselor recognized as an actual profession has taken over 30 years and is as of now an ongoing procedure.  The movement by the states to recognize licensure is a great one, but the titles of the professionals are varied by state and national certification by the NBCC is voluntary and does not provide the counselor a license to practice.

National licensure either in lieu of or required in addition to the state requirements would be a step in the right direction because the requirements would be more stringent and a counselor would be able to move states without having to find out and adhere to new state requirements.

In 1986 and 1987, comprehensive training standards were set for Clinical Mental Health Counselors in order to help them gain creditability and clinical skills.  A Clinical Counselor would need to have a minimum of 60 semester credit hours and a minimum of 1,000 clock hours of clinical supervision. There are literally hundreds of programs that will train counselors but most are not accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs, or, CACREP.  The standards set for a Clinical Counselor will not help them qualify for payment from a third-party payer such as private insurance or Medicare.  The standards for this privilege are much higher.  Third party payment wasn’t even a reality for the Mental Health Counselor until 1993 and was a strong concern until that time.  The standards were developed by the AMHCA and include having at least 3,000 hours of clinical experience, a minimum of 100 hours completed face-to-face supervision, a counselor must adhere to their appropriate association’s code of ethics, they have to achieve a passing score on the clinical exam, and submit an actual counseling session as well as have the appropriate licensing.  The certifications, education and licensing requirements have helped to make the Mental Health Counseling field strong but there are some concerns that we will need to address sooner or later.

In the world today, online counseling is gaining strength, which could be a threat to the traditional counselor.  If online counseling grows into something that is more acceptable or used more often than traditional services, counselors with state licensing would be forced to adjust and begin practicing this way, causing even more competition than before.  At this time in our lives, through this media anyone can be a counselor, the qualifications can range anywhere from a Dear Abby wannabe to a highly licensed and trained counselor.  The only proof generally offered is on the “About” page.  This type of counseling claims to be faster, but is it really?

Is sending an email about a problem you are having and then waiting for an answer completely comforting?  Of course, it is faster than having to research counselors and then wait for an appointment.  The draw would be that it is useful for people who are comfortable writing out their feelings and they would rather have the anonymity that comes with the internet.  If you have difficulty getting out of your house or have physical limitations or if you are uncomfortable with traditional counseling this would be a good solution.   Some concerns would be, first and foremost is the fact that a person’s non-verbal cues are not visible, this would include body language, facial expressions, hand gestures, and sitting positions, not to mention tone and inflection in a person’s voice cannot be heard.  How many times have you sent an email and then had to explain because the receiving party misinterpreted what you were trying to say?  This could be a big deal because this is at least half of how you learn about the person you are counseling.  Another concern would be the ability to understand what the counselor’s background is.  In order to be sure you are getting what is posted on a counselor’s website the minimal you would need to do would be to check with the Better Business Bureau, which is recommended no matter who you choose to help you.  You could also go as far as to check the counselor’s credentials with their respective schools or perform a background check which would cost even more money than what you are already spending on counseling.  In reality, most people will not check the credentials of the counselor, they will take what is given and run with it.

Lastly, since each state has their own regulations for licensing, if you get a counselor online who is not licensed in your state, they could be considered to be practicing illegally, so there is no recourse if you feel that you should be able to file a law suit for any reason.  The most logical solution to this would be that online counselors should be regulated and licensed as well, this will take a lot of legislation as well as time to make this happen, but it will be a reality in the years to come.

Salary seems to be another threat in the mental health field.  Once licensed, an entry-level salary is in the low $30,000 level.  This seems to be due to employment mainly in non-profit organizations where individuals are responsible for payment, which calls for a lower, more competitive fee.  It does seem like there is more movement into specialty areas of counseling which could be a solution to this problem.  Areas such as developmental disabilities, addiction disorders, chronic or fatal health conditions, and sex abuse victims, but at the same time this carries a threat of its own.  The risk of this would be that the counselor could end up in a niche that doesn’t suit him or her.  They may have a hard time getting into another specialty which could cause them to leave the field all together.  This is a double edged sword and it seems like to succeed in this field it would be a good idea while you are still in school to work or volunteer closely with counselors who are already in the profession you think would be a good fit.  This could enable a counselor starting out to begin at a higher level of salary.

It is very evident that the face of mental health is not a positive one. This is a threat not only for the counselors because it is considered taboo for a person to seek help, but also for the clients because they are easily labeled abnormal or crazy.  It seems that in order to try to move past the stigma we face as a mental health community, we need to focus more on awareness and sensitivity so that the people who aren’t currently undergoing any kind of treatment will understand why others feel the need to find ways to help themselves. We could accomplish this by speaking publicly in middle schools or high schools and definitely in colleges and participating more on a community level.  The more we can make people aware that the services we offer do not necessarily mean that our clients are insane, the better the communities around our clients will feel, and the better our clients will feel about what they are doing to help themselves.

With issues like these it is easy to tell the counseling field is still in the beginning stages of development where Mental Health Counselors are concerned.  Even though the mental health counseling field still has a long way to go it has made great strides in the recent past.

We have gained recognition in each state with licensure; we have come to a point where we can get paid through third-party payers, albeit with some pretty lengthy requirements, we have even entered the technological world with online counseling.  Will the salary ever catch up with the other advancements we have made?  Will public opinion ever move past the stereo type that because you have chosen to seek help, instead of go it alone, there must be something drastically wrong with you?  We will make these advancements as well, but only with hard work and persistence and it will definitely take longer than it should.

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Mental Health Counseling: Past, Present, and Future. Journal of Counseling & Development; Current Issues Medicare Coverage of Licensed Professional Counselors. www.counseling.org;

Defining the mental health counseling profession: Embracing historical and contemporary perspectives at the interface of theory, practice, research, and professional exchange.  Journal of Mental Health Counseling;

What’s Next for the Profession of Mental Health Counseling?. Journal of Mental Health Counseling;

The American Mental Health Counselors Association: Reflection on 30 Historic Years. Journal of Counseling and Development : JCD

Comparing and Contrasting Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID, Multiple Personality Disorder) with Conversion Disorder (CD)

Dissociative Identity Disorder and Conversion Disorder are similar in that they both stem from stressful events.  In Dissociative Identity Disorder a personality is formed when extreme child abuse or sexual abuse is experienced.  With Conversion Disorder it is a more recent event like a rape or physical or emotional abuse. Other than this similarity the two disorders are quite different.

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Dissociative Identity Disorder is a disorder in which the person affected suffers from as little as 2 distinct personalities and can suffer from as many as 100 or more.  Each personality has a very distinct identity, and will often take control of the person and how they act.  Because of the different identities taking over the people lose time.  They don’t remember the period of time that they were not in control and then have a hard time understanding why everything is different, especially in extreme cases when the other identity takes over for years at a time.  Usually an alternate identity takes over when the primary identity experiences something overly stressful.  It is common for people with this disorder to have other disorders or to have problems with substance abuse.  While DID has been known to last a lifetime, treatment can help.  Treatment usually involves psychotherapy and helps the person to integrate the identities into one.  It can be a painful process as well as time consuming, but according to people who have been able to achieve integration, it is definitely worth it.

Alternatively Conversion Disorder affects people in their sensory areas or physically where voluntary movement is concerned.  It is known to be a somatoform disorder and is said to be a large part of why people visit their primary care physicians.  Basically when people shove their emotions and stress too far inward they turn into physical symptoms.  This is called converting.  The conversion of these symptoms can cause a patient to contact their caregiver nine times as often.  The patient does not control the symptoms and can have a surprisingly painful beginning, and diagnosis can become complicated by a true physical illness.

Conversion Disorder has specific risk factors which include the fact that someone is female, men are less likely to receive this diagnosis.  This diagnosis is more common in the teen years, if there is someone in the family who is already receiving treatment for Conversion Disorder, it is likely to continue in the family line.

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