Sometimes children can get stuck in a particular stage of development or experience events and emotions that are difficult for them to manage. Neurodevelopmental issues can emerge during childhood that impact friendships, academic development, family relationships, and self-confidence. We can help to guide your children through these difficulties to promote growth and
self-esteem. When working with children, parental guidance and psychoeducation is provided throughout sessions.
Adolescence is an exciting time, which can also be difficult. Adolescents are developing their own identity and independence, and are developing more mature relationships. These changes occur when they have increased school demands and may have to balance work-life and extra curricular demands. Increased impulsivity during this stage of life can complicate decision-making and problem-solving. When pre-existing issues from childhood are present, adolescence can be more challenging. We can help to guide adolescents through these challenges to promote autonomy and goals.
Adult treatment is provided for individuals interested in personal growth as well as to address more more complicated mental health issues. Individuals are taught how to realistically evaluate their thoughts, behaviour and lifestyle, regulate their emotions, and work towards their goals. Issues with mood or anxiety or other symptoms that are barriers to realizing these goals are managed. Unhelpful patterns and problematic personality features that can complicate relationships and prevent personal development are some of the things that can be addressed. Where appropriate, childhood and adolescent experiences are discussed.
All anxiety is not the same. All depression is not the same. All trauma is not the same. All personalities are not the same. Thus, careful and comprehensive evaluation by a duly qualified clinician legally empowered to diagnose the varied subtypes that exist within each category of disorder is required to make this determination. The complexity of these diagnoses requires precise and thorough assessment, which allows for individuals to receive effective care, to be eligible for school-based accommodations and modifications to facilitate their learning, and to be eligible to receive developmental and/or disability benefits. Also, the complexity of many of these diagnoses - which can include multi-varied and severe symptoms such as suicidal thought, self-harm, and psychosis - necessitates accurate testing and diagnosis to allow for tailor-made treatment planning.
Seeing a psychologist does not mean that you will necessarily be diagnosed with a psychological disorder. It is common and normal for healthy individuals to experience stressors that can be overwhelming. We provide a safe place to discuss these issues and help you to implement strategies to cope. These issues can include but are not limited to problems with: family relationships, parenting (not including child custody and access work), workplace stress, bullying and harassment, stage of life transitions, habit changes, self-confidence and self-esteem, bereavement, perfectionism, goal-setting, and coping with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Anxiety disorders are characterized by excessive worry that is difficult to control and that causes distress. They can affect anyone at any age and are one of the most common mental health problems. Anxiety can limit ones ability to work, go to school, and have healthy relationships. Anxiety Disorders can include but are not limited to Separation Anxiety Disorder, Phobias, Social Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, and Generalized Anxiety Disorder.
Mood disorders are characterized by severe changes in mood from excessive depression to extreme elation/anger. These can include self-destructive behaviour and suicidal thought is common. In some cases, psychotic thought (difficulty understanding what is real and what is not) can occur, making it difficult for individuals to know what is real and what is not. Mood disorders can include but are not limited to Major Depressive Disorder and Bipolar Disorder.
These disorders are characterized by feeling like you are re-experiencing a traumatic event, avoidance, volatile mood, and detachment. These disorders can include but are not limited to Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Adjustment Disorder. We have experience in treating complex trauma, childhood trauma, victims of crime, military personnel, veterans, injured workers, perinatal and medical trauma, and first responders of all kinds (police, RCMP, fire, paramedics, nurses and physicians, correctional employees, probation and parole employees, 911 dispatchers, child protection workers).
These are a group of disorders which become obvious in early development. They produce problems for children in personal, social, or academic functioning. These are characterized by: difficulty learning from experience; failing to meet developmental milestones; lagging development and use of language and speech; difficulties with social communication, social interaction, and understanding relationships; repetitive behaviours or interests; difficulties with attention and disorganization; excessive movement; not thinking before acting; difficulty acquiring and executing movements; motor or verbal tics; and, difficulties learning foundational academics in reading, writing, and/or mathematics. These disorders can include but are not limited to Intellectual Disability, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Learning Disorders, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Tourette's Disorder.
These disorders are characterized by obsessions (recurrent and persistent thoughts, urges, or images that are experienced as intrusive and unwanted) and compulsions (repetitive behaviours or mental acts that an individual feels driven to perform in response to an obsession). These disorders can include but are not limited to Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Body Dysmorphic Disorder.
Personality disorders are unhelpful and inflexible patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behaviour that begin in adolescence and create significant challenges in a person’s life. Individuals with a personality disorder may have great difficulty relating to other people, understanding their own identity, managing emotions, or controlling their behaviour. Personality disorders are complex diagnoses often characterized by extensive and severe symptoms.
These disorders are defined by physical symptoms (i.e., chronic pain, a general medical condition) and thoughts, feelings, and behaviours in response to these physical symptoms, which cause significant distress and impairment. These disorders can include but are not limited to Somatic Symptom Disorder, and Illness Anxiety Disorder.
These disorders typically have their onset during childhood and are defined by problems with self-control of emotions and behaviour to the extent that others are negatively affected. These behaviours can include anger, defiance and acting out. Sometimes, individuals with these disorders struggle to empathize with others. These disorders can include but are not limited to Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Conduct Disorder.
Suicide is the intentional act of ending one’s life. Self-injury is deliberate harm to one's own body (i.e., cutting) without suicidal intention. Suicide and self-injury are complicated issues that can occur as a part of any disorder, but predominate in mood disorders, specific personality disorders, and in those who have experienced trauma.
If you are feeling suicidal now: