6 Ways To End a Screen-Time Addiction

6 Innovative Ways To End A Screen-Time Addiction

In the age of iPads, tablets, smartphones, and Macbooks, keeping your kids away from screens seems to be an impossible feat. Professionals have recommended children under the age of 5 spend an hour a day devoted to a screen, but it sounds a lot better on paper than it does in action.

Can we end the epidemic of screen-time addiction and obsession with the internet and the instant gratification it provides? These 6 tricks can help you get your kids to cut back on screen-time and resume their lives as healthy, active children again.

Take One For The Team and Start Cutting Back

Honestly, it’s no surprise we’re seeing more and more kids become addicted to screens, and it’s spreading down into the toddler ages. The average adult spends over 10 hours on a screen in America, and kids are our biggest copycats. When they see us enjoying the easy access to screens and getting sucked into the vortex of virtual reality, it sets up an example for them to follow.

Introduce Firm and Understandable Rules

The younger the child, the easier it is to create a habit, or end a bad one. Most preschoolers won’t know what they’re missing if you turn the screens off more, but when they reach 5 and up, they start to develop that dependence on screens that’s causing many problems we see in society today. No matter if you’re starting young or a little late, make sure your kids know the new rules and don’t let them bend or break them.

Allow Yourself To Look At The Clock

In most situations, watching the clock makes time go slower and creates more problems than it creates. Setting limits for your kids and establishing firm timeframes for them to use a screen is a great start, but to enforce these rules, you have to be on top of the tick-tock.

It’s Okay To Make It a Bribe

Since your kids are going to be using screens no matter one somehow or another, make it a motivational tactic to encourage activity in their other areas of life. Completing the chores for the day can be rewarded with their hour of screen time, whereas having a bad attitude or breaking a different rule could result in losing computer privileges.

Knock Out Two Birds With One Stone

Some families struggle to find time to all spend together, so make electronic games and movies part of your activities as a group! Not only are you making the time spent with a screen more productive by encouraging conversation and bonding, but you’re staying active and involved in your child’s time spent online. Doing so can help prevent bad situations from happening without your realization.

Create a Designated Space

There isn’t much reason for your kids to have screens in their rooms, so don’t even start introducing them in your kid’s private areas. Instead, keep your electronics located in accessible spaces, like a family room or a computer office. This will make monitoring their time and activity much easier and establish healthy habits.

The Bottom Line

By acting as soon as possible, you’ll have an easier time getting a handle on the screen dependency problem that countless families face. Screen addictions in kids lead to other problems down the line and can affect their cognitive skill development. Implementing these practices can bring the risk to your child down significantly without creating the next World War in your own home!

About The Author

This post was written by Jenny Silverstone, the chief editor and writer of Mom Loves Best, a research-driven parenting blog that aims to educate parents on essential topics such as children safety, health, and development.

Related Online Continuing Education (CE) Course:

Effects of Digital Media on Children’s Development and LearningEffects of Digital Media on Children’s Development and Learning is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that reviews the research on media use and offers guidance for educators and parents to regulate their children’s use of digital devices.

Today’s world is filled with smartphones used by people ignoring their surroundings and even texting while driving, which is criminally dangerous. Are there other dangers that may not be as apparent? Media technology (e.g., smart phones, tablets, or laptop computers) have changed the world. Babies and children are affected and research reveals that 46% of children under age one, and up to 59% of eight-year-old children are exposed to cell phones. In England, nearly 80% of senior primary-school staff reportedly are worried about poor social skills or speech problems of children entering school, which they attribute to the use of media devices.

Media technology affects family life, children’s readiness for entering school or preschool, and classroom learning. Recent research delineates a developmental progression of understanding information on devices for children between ages 2- 5 years. Younger children may believe false information if it is on a computer. This research is important for understanding technology uses in education. There are also known health risks and possible adverse effects to social-emotional development. Statistics describing the increase of media technology and developing trends in media use are presented along with guidelines and position statements developed to protect children from risks and adverse effects. Course #30-96 | 2017 | 50 pages | 20 posttest questions 

Click here to learn more.

Course Directions

Our online courses provide instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

This is Your Brain on Depression

Depression

According to the National Institutes of Health, depression is one of the most important causes of disability worldwide, and yet the high rate of inadequate treatment of the disorder remains a serious concern (Kessler, 2013). There are several possible reasons for this, such as resistance to treatment, difficulty in adequate diagnosis, and compliance with medication. However, one very large prevailing factor is the way in which depression affects our brains.

To date, the most relevant theory of depression is what is known as the monoamine deficiency hypothesis. According to this theory, monoamine acts like a brain regulator, affecting several brain functions, including mood, attention, reward processing, sleep, appetite, and cognition. This theory has been supported by the fact that almost every compound that inhibits monoamine reuptake, leading to an increased concentration of monoamines in the synaptic cleft, has been proven to be a clinically effective antidepressant (Belmaker, 2008).

Further, when the enzyme monoamine oxidase, which increases the availability of monoamines in presynaptic neurons, is inhibited, antidepressant effects are observed.

From the monoamine-deficiency theory emerged the understanding of depression as a depletion of the neurotransmitters serotonin, norepinephrine or dopamine in the central nervous system.

Of the neurotransmitters involved in depression, serotonin is the most studied. Evidence for abnormally low functioning of the serotonin system in depressed patients comes from studies using tryptophan depletion, which reduces central serotonin synthesis.

When tryptophan was reduced in subjects at increased risk of depression (those with a family history, or with MDD -major depressive disorder- in full remission) depression symptoms increased (Neumeister, 2014).

Further, experimentally reduced central serotonin has been associated with mood congruent memory bias, altered reward-related behaviors, and disruption of inhibitory affective processing (Hasler, 2014). Serotonin receptors – which regulate serotonin function – also appear to work abnormally in depressed people, as decreased availability of receptors have been found in multiple brain areas of patients with MDD (Drevets, 2011).

A classic feature of depression is low energy; dysfunction of the central noradrenergic system has been hypothesized to play a role in the pathophysiology of depression. Several studies have found decreased norepinephrine metabolism, increased activity of tyrosine hydroxylase, and decreased density of norepinephrine transporter in the locus ceruleus in depressed patients (Charney, 2014). In addition, decreased density of adrenergic receptors have been found in the post-mortem brains of depressed suicide victims (Pandey, 2015).

Dopamine, which is typically associated with the reward system and evidenced in cases of addiction, also appears to play a significant role in the neurobiology of depression. When dopamine reuptake is suppressed (through reuptake inhibitors) anti-depressant effects are observed (Goldberg, 2014). In patients with MDD, dopamine transporter binding and uptake were both reduced, suggesting a depletion of the dopamine system as an important feature of depression (Meyer, 2011).

Click here to learn more.

Course excerpt from:

Nutrition and Depression: Advanced Clinical ConceptsNutrition and Depression: Advanced Clinical Concepts is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE) course that examines how what we eat influences how we feel – and what we can do to improve both.

Depression is an increasingly common, complex, inflammatory condition that co-occurs with a host of other conditions. This course will examine how we can combat depression through nutrition, starting with an exploration of the etiology of depression – taking a look at the role of neurotransmitters, the HPA axis and cortisol, gene expression (epigenetics), upregulation and downregulation, and the connections between depression and immunity and depression and obesity. We will then turn our attention to macronutrients and investigate how factors such as regulating blood sugar, achieving amino acid balance, consuming the right fats, and eating fruits and vegetables can enhance mood, improve our decision-making, enhance cognitive processes, and reduce inflammation. From there, we will look at just how we go about the process of building a better brain – one neurotransmitter at a time. Exercises you can use with clients are included. Course #31-02 | 2018 | 42 pages | 20 posttest questions

Course Directions

Our online courses provide instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Cultural Humility: A Mindset

Cultural Humility

Healthcare professionals have, over the years, wrestled with determining the best way to become culturally competent. Knowledge is important, but Tervalon and Murray-Garcia (1998) suggest that achieving cultural humility is equally important.

The authors note that the standard of competence in clinical training as detached mastery of a finite body of knowledge may not be the best concept in the area of culture. Cultural humility is proposed as the best stance for learning about other cultures. Cultural humility includes lifelong learning, including evaluating and critiquing your own behavior. Power imbalances in the therapeutic relationship must be assessed and addressed to develop a non-paternalistic, mutually beneficial relationship that includes advocacy for both individuals and groups.

The National Association of Social Workers (2015) includes humility in its cultural standards. Social workers are expected to “demonstrate cultural humility and sensitivity to the dynamics of power and privilege in all areas of social work” (pg 4).

Cultural humility is defined as learning about a person’s culture and then communicating, offering help and sharing decision making, when working with people at the micro, mezzo and macro level. It is an “other-oriented” mindset that focuses on how the person’s social experiences affect their behavior.

The healthcare professional listens and learns, rather than taking an authoritarian stance. The person being served is, after all, the expert in the way their culture affects their lives. Empowerment flows from the validation of the person in their culture.

This is a lifelong process. Researchers have described the process as a constant state of “being-in-becoming.” A lifelong commitment to learning and becoming more and more competent in multicultural and social justice is required, as well as the willingness to apply cultural humility to your practice.

Course excerpt from:

Cultural Awareness in Clinical PracticeCultural Awareness in Clinical Practice is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that provides the foundation for achieving cultural competence and diversity in healthcare settings.

Cultural competence, responding to diversity and inclusion, are important practices for healthcare professionals. This course will help you to gain an awareness of bias and provide strategies to adjust your clinical mindset and therapeutic approach to adapt to “the other” – people who differ in color, creed, sexual identification, socio-economic status, or other differences that make inclusion difficult.

Inclusion is defined as “the state of being included” or “the act of including,” which is something all clinicians should strive for. This course is designed to provoke thought about culture, diversity, and inclusion. Even though research for evidence-based practice is somewhat limited in this area, the concept of cultural competency (however it is defined and measured) is a key skill for healthcare professionals to create an inclusive therapeutic environment. Course #31-07 | 2018 | 57 pages | 20 posttest questions

Course Directions

Our online courses provide instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Grief Work: What Do I Say?

Grief

If you have not been trained in grief work, it can be intimidating to have a client expressing grief by crying, being upset, or angrily responding to you. You may not have easy access to a social worker, psychologist, or other mental health professional. The primary ideas to remember are these:

It is not about you. Grief is not a problem to be solved. It is a process to live through.

Talking to someone who is grieving stirs up your own feelings. This can trigger inappropriate responses to the grieving person. Think about what you are about to say, and why. If you start to talk about yourself, stop. This is not about you. It is about the grieving person.

If you are a problem-solver, you may be tempted to find a solution for the person’s grief. It may be appropriate to refer the person to a mental health professional, but you will not solve the problem and make the person feel better today, tomorrow, or even a month from now. Grief must take its course, and the course will be different for everyone. Your best response is to listen supportively, without judgment and without giving advice (Devine, 2017).

Use these basic ideas to respond to a grieving person:

  • Say, “I can’t imagine how you are feeling.” Do not tell the person you know how they feel. Their grief is unique to them. You may have a similar experience, but it will not be the same.
  • Ask, “What can I do to help right now?” The person may not know what you can do to help, but asking provides the person a small amount of control in a situation that feels wildly out of control.
  • Say “It sounds as if you loved her/him very much. Would you like to tell me what made him/her so special?”
  • Be silent with the person and wait. Offer a tissue if needed.
  • Say, “I am not sure what to say to comfort you, but please know I care” (What’s Your Grief, 2014).

Course excerpt from:

Grief: The Reaction to LossGrief: The Reaction to Loss is a 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that teaches healthcare professionals how to recognize and respond to grief.

Grief is the reaction to loss, and any kind of loss can trigger grief. People grieve for the loss of someone they love, but they also grieve for the loss of independence, usefulness, cognitive functioning, and physical abilities. Grief is also a lifelong process: a journey rather than a disease that is cured. It changes over time to deal with different kinds of losses. It is an experience that is intellectual, physical, spiritual, and emotional. It is affected by the person’s culture, support system, religious beliefs, and a host of other factors.

Grief is often not recognized by healthcare professionals, in patients or themselves. This course will teach healthcare professionals to recognize grief, as well as how to respond appropriately to the grieving person. The progression of aging and dying will be discussed in order to normalize the process, one of the most important aspects of working with a grieving person. Screening guidelines for depression, suicide risk, and grief are included, as are treatment strategies for anticipatory and complicated grief. A final section on compassion fatigue, burnout, and secondary stress includes strategies for professional self-care. Course #21-25 | 2018 | 35 pages | 15 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

Related Online Continuing Education (CE) Courses:

The Grieving SelfThe Grieving Self is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE) course that looks at stories of the bereaved to determine the major issues to address to reconnect those who grieve to a stable sense of self. The annual number of deaths reported in the United States in the early part of this century was 2.4 million, about four per minute. This course looks at the stories of a few of those who are recently bereaved to determine the major issues for those who grieve: aloneness, loss of self, social connections, anniversaries and holidays, self and others’ expectations, the need to continue living, ambivalence of recovery, grief dreams, medical problems. Studies are reviewed which indicate some researchers’ conclusions as to: 1) Gender differences between men and women who grieve; there are important questions regarding the recruitment of subjects and the data gathering process for gender differences research. 2) And, who among the grief survivors are best served by counseling and psychotherapy. This author, while agreeing with much of the research, challenges the belief that the emotional loneliness suffered by the bereaved is the single, major dynamic of the bereaved, and can only be alleviated through passage of time. It is felt that an effort to reconnect those who grieve to a stable sense of self can help the bereaved regain better function and reduce the length of the time they are consigned to painfully distressing lives. Course #30-49 | 2010 | 34 pages | 20 posttest questions
Suicide PreventionSuicide Prevention: Evidence-Based Strategies is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE) course that reviews evidence-based research and offers strategies for screening, assessment, treatment, and prevention of suicide in both adolescents and adults. Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. In 2015, 44,193 people killed themselves. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes, “Suicide is a serious but preventable public health problem that can have lasting harmful effects on individuals, families, and communities.” People who attempt suicide but do not die face potentially serious injury or disability, depending on the method used in the attempt. Depression and other mental health issues follow the suicide attempt. Family, friends, and coworkers are negatively affected by suicide. Shock, anger, guilt, and depression arise in the wake of this violent event. Even the community as a whole is affected by the loss of a productive member of society, lost wages not spent at local businesses, and medical costs. The CDC estimates that suicides result in over 44 billion dollars in work loss and medical costs. Prevention is key: reducing risk factors and promoting resilience. This course will provide a review of evidence-based studies so that healthcare professionals are informed on this complex subject. Information from the suicide prevention technical package from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will be provided. Included also are strategies for screening and assessment, prevention considerations, methods of treatment, and resources for choosing evidence-based suicide prevention programs. Course #30-97 | 2017 | 60 pages | 20 posttest questions
Overcoming the Stigma of Mental IllnessOvercoming the Stigma of Mental Illness is a 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that explores the stigmas around mental illness and provides effective strategies to overcome them. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) defines mental illness stigma as “a range of negative attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors about mental and substance use disorders.” Mental health and substance use disorders are prevalent and among the most highly stigmatized health conditions in the United States, and they remain barriers to full participation in society in areas as basic as education, housing, and employment. This course will explore the stigmas surrounding mental illness and provide effective strategies clinicians can use to create a therapeutic environment where clients can evaluate their attitudes, beliefs, and fears about mental illness, and ultimately find ways to overcome them. We will explore the ways in which mental illness stigmas shape our beliefs, decisions, and lives. We will then look at specific stigmas about mental illness, from the fear of being seen as crazy to the fear of losing cognitive function and the ways in which we seek to avoid these fears. We will then look at targeted strategies that, you, the clinician, can use to create a therapeutic alliance where change and healing can overcome the client’s fears. Lastly, we will look at the specific exercises you can use in session with your clients to help them address and overcome their biases and stigmas about mental illness. Course #21-24 | 2018 | 35 pages | 15 posttest questions
Course Directions
Our online courses provide instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!—

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Personality & Temperament in Young Clients

New Online CE/CEU Course @pdresources.org

Personality and Temperament: Connecting with Young ClientsPersonality and Temperament: Connecting with Young Clients is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that demonstrates how differences in personality and temperament impact how children behave and how adults communicate and connect with them.

Understanding differences in temperament and personality among adults and children will ultimately assist us in developing better relationships with our clients and enhancing therapy interventions, plans, and goals. Within the context of each type, this course will describe motivators that are type-specific, behavioral “triggers,” strategies and techniques for engaging children’s cooperation, and ways to free children from negative roles.

We will also discuss ways for clinicians to help parents understand their own personality traits and behavioral tendencies in their children so that they can learn to be more effective behavior managers. Many of the same observations and interventions can be applied to children who are experiencing learning differences or developmental challenges. Course #31-10 | 2018 | 54 pages | 20 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

Course Directions

Our online courses provide instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

HIV/AIDS: Adherence Issues

New Online CE Course @pdresources.org

HIV/AIDS: Adherence IssuesHIV/AIDS: Adherence Issues is a new 1-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that discusses adherence issues in populations at high risk for HIV infection.

HIV and AIDS are medical terms that are linked together due to the progressive nature of HIV, with the end result of untreated (or undertreated) HIV becoming AIDS. The virus affects people of all ages, from children born to mothers with HIV, to adolescents, to adults, and elders. People who live with HIV can live almost normal lifespans and have little risk of transmitting the disease if they use antiretroviral therapy appropriately under medical care. However, only 55% of HIV-infected people follow their antiretroviral regimen well enough to achieve viral suppression. This course will provide strategies for healthcare professionals to encourage patients to seek and maintain medical treatment. Course # 11-18 | 2018 | 22 pages | 10 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

Course Directions

Our online courses provide instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Grief: The Reaction to Loss

New Online Continuing Education (CE/CEU) Course @pdresources.org

Grief: The Reaction to LossGrief: The Reaction to Loss is a new 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that teaches healthcare professionals how to recognize and respond to grief.

Grief is the reaction to loss, and any kind of loss can trigger grief. People grieve for the loss of someone they love, but they also grieve for the loss of independence, usefulness, cognitive functioning, and physical abilities. Grief is also a lifelong process: a journey rather than a disease that is cured. It changes over time to deal with different kinds of losses. It is an experience that is intellectual, physical, spiritual, and emotional. It is affected by the person’s culture, support system, religious beliefs, and a host of other factors.

Grief is often not recognized by healthcare professionals, in patients or themselves. This course will teach healthcare professionals to recognize grief, as well as how to respond appropriately to the grieving person. The progression of aging and dying will be discussed in order to normalize the process, one of the most important aspects of working with a grieving person. Screening guidelines for depression, suicide risk, and grief are included, as are treatment strategies for anticipatory and complicated grief. A final section on compassion fatigue, burnout, and secondary stress includes strategies for professional self-care. Course #21-25 | 2018 | 35 pages | 15 posttest questions

Course Directions

Our online courses provide instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Motivation in Weight Loss

Motivation in Weight Loss

While we may find it hard to relate to the loss of motivation a 200 million dollar a year contract player might experience after his first year, we can probably all relate to the motivation needed when we want to lose weight.

Recruiting participants for a 16-week weight loss intervention, researchers at the University of Kentucky and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill examined what many of us will recognize as two types of motivation we have likely used on ourselves to lose weight.

Autonomous motivation, otherwise known as intrinsic motivation, describes our desire to lose weight for personal reasons, such as feeling better, performing better, and becoming healthier. On the other hand, sometimes we are pressured by those around us to lose weight, or feel guilty if we don’t lose weight – which is described as extrinsic or controlled motivation.

To measure the 2 types of motivation, researchers used a Treatment Self-Regulation Questionnaire and measured participants’ motivation for weight loss at baseline and at 4, 8, 12, and 16 weeks. Study participants were then asked to record their food intake, exercise, and body weight through an online self-monitoring system weekly throughout the study.

So who fared better, those with high levels of autonomous motivation, or high levels of controlled motivation? While the researchers found that the majority of participants had a significant increase in autonomous and controlled motivation between baseline and 4 weeks, the group that went on to achieve a 5% weight loss sustained their autonomous motivation between 4 and 16 weeks, while the group that was less successful experienced a significant decrease in autonomous and controlled motivation over time (Webber et al., 2010).

Interestingly, autonomous motivation at 4 weeks was found to be a significant predictor of adherence to self-monitoring and weight loss, as the authors found a positive correlation between weight loss at 4 weeks and higher levels of autonomous motivation especially when compared to participants who had higher levels of controlled motivation. Furthermore, it seemed the self-monitoring and autonomous motivation worked in a positive feedback loop where the more participants monitored their behavior, the more motivated they became, and the more weight they lost (Webber et al., 2010).

Lead author, Kate Webber explains, “It appears that the time period between 4 and 8 weeks may be an important window for weight control programs to consider using techniques designed to enhance autonomous motivation, including giving more intense support or different types of interventions, such as activities to enhance autonomous motivation or contact from a weight-loss counselor in the form of e-mails, phone calls, or face-to-face meetings. These findings suggest that building motivation may be an effective means of promoting adherence and weight loss” (Webber, 2010).

Another study found that intrinsic motivation also helps promote an important part of any weight loss routine – maintaining an exercise routine.

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Motivation: Igniting the Process of Change

MotivationMotivation: Igniting the Process of Change is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that explores how we can tap into, ignite, and harness our motivation to create lasting change.

Motivation today is one of the most coveted traits, thought to underlie our business success, athletic prowess, and even weight loss. But just how do we motivate ourselves? How do we ignite and harness our own motivation to achieve our goals? How do we call upon our motivation when we need it the most? And how do we keep motivation alive to create the lives we want? This course will explore these questions, and many more.

We will begin with a discussion about why clinicians need to know this information and how this information can be helpful in working with clients. Next, we will look at the research behind motivation, decipher between extrinsic and intrinsic motivation, and explore the roots of what keeps us motivated now, and over time.

Lastly, we will learn the powerful skills needed to create a spark – that is to teach your clients to ignite and harness their own motivation to face fears, make decisions, take action, and create lasting change. Exercises you can use with clients are included. Course #31-03 | 2018 | 46 pages | 20 posttest questions

Course Directions

Our online courses provide instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Why Licensure Matters

Why Licensure Matters

Dogs are cute, but would you want to see one driving? Well, okay, I might! :) There’s a reason why we have to learn how to drive before we can get a license to. This concept also applies to healthcare professionals. We have to train (through years of college) and prove we are capable (through testing and certification) before we can gain licensure and help the people we did all this for.

For licensed dietitians in Florida, things have been a bit up in the air. Recently, a movement has challenged the way dietitians are licensed – arguing that, in fact, they shouldn’t be licensed at all. Florida, they say, should be what is called a “title state.” Like other states, such as California, this would allow people to practice as “nutritionists” without being licensed as dietitians. And for those in the field – especially those who have spent years and thousands of dollars on their education – this has brought up a very salient point – licensure matters, not just for dietitians, but for all health professionals.

Standards of Care

For many us of, standards of care are an expectation. We don’t think much about the ingredients in the vitamins we choose, the safety of airlines we fly on, or whether the pediatrician we take our children to is qualified. We simply expect it.

We expect that when we buy 1000 mg. of Vitamin C, that it’s what we are getting. We expect that what the personal trainer we just hired – a purportedly qualified health professional – knows what he’s saying when he talks about our diet.

But here’s an example of why we need to do more than expect: A man in recovery from a kidney transplant due to renal failure decides he is going to join a gym and begin regaining his fitness. Upon seeing his muscular atrophy, the personal trainer prescribes him a diet of 300g of protein daily. Within a few days of following this diet, the man begins to feel weak, sluggish, and lightheaded. When he sees his doctor, he learns that his kidney has been rejected and he is back in renal failure due to the extremely high protein diet.

This is why standards of care matter – because they give consumers protection about what they are getting. When you hire a personal trainer who is only qualified to give you fitness advice, that is what you get – and nothing more. When you hire a marriage counselor to help improve your relationship with your spouse, you have the assurance that this professional is trained to work with couples like you, and is truly qualified to help you. When you ask this same professional about your son’s addiction problems, you would expect that they would refer you to another professional trained in addiction. When we remove licensure requirements, what we get is blurry lines, unqualified “professionals,” and an “anything goes” philosophy, that ultimately, consumers pay the price for.

Code of Ethics

Like standards of care, we often take ethics for granted. But here is why they become indispensable for health professionals – because the client is in a vulnerable position. In a typical health professional-client relationship, it is the health professional that is often seen as the expert, and the one who has the power in the relationship. It’s the doctor that tells you what to do about X condition, the psychotherapist who has the knowledge about why you are feeling the way you are, and the psychiatrist that knows what to prescribe to make you feel better. In each of these situations, it is the code of ethics that guides each professional’s decisions. It’s the reason that the doctor who sees that you have an auto detailing business doesn’t ask you to detail his car. It’s reason that the marriage counselor doesn’t suggest that you divorce your spouse and start dating her cousin. And it’s the reason that the psychiatrist doesn’t prescribe more of an addictive medication than you need.

Health professionals don’t have to follow the code of ethics, yet if they don’t, there a repercussions. Suspensions can be rendered, fines can be imposed, and yes, licenses can be lost. Incidentally, the largest category of ethical violations for marriage and family counselors is the category of sexual violations with clients.

Establishment of a Regulatory Agency

Standards of care and codes of ethics are just two reasons why licensure matters, however, without establishing a regulatory agency, they don’t hold much weight.

Standards of care are created through a licensing body which, after much deliberation and study of the field of practice and the client needs therein, determine what is considered a standard for practice in that particular field. Similarly, it is this same regulatory agency that, when ethical violations are made, can be reported to.

So let me give you another example. A “nutritionist” working at a residential fitness camp is told by one of her clients that she is having trouble sleeping. Knowing that this is a concern for the client who is attempting to work out up to eight hours a day in an effort to lose weight, the nutritionist asks one of her other clients to give this client some of her Ambien (a prescription sleep medication) to help her sleep. Let’s say that the client who receives the medication had a negative reaction to it. Who is liable? In a case like this, it depends on the state. In a title state, where nutritionists can practice without license, there is no regulatory agency to report her to. So then the liability falls upon the client who dispensed the Ambien. And while she shouldn’t have given out her prescription medication (there are both federal and state laws that make using or sharing prescription drugs illegal), she was under the care of a nutritionist, and likely expected that this professional would not have asked her to do something illegal.

Practicing without ramifications isn’t only dangerous, it’s unethical, because, ultimately, as in cases like this, it is the client, and not the professional, who pays the price.

Achieving licensure for health professionals is a rite of passage – one that grants entrance into a world where hard earned knowledge, skills, and abilities can be used in the most honorable of ways – to help others in need. And licensure keeps health professionals accountable to practice to the best of their ability, not extend beyond their level of competence, and comply with the standards of care, code of ethics, and rules of a regulatory agency that was created to protect their profession, and the people it serves. Ultimately, licensure isn’t just about those who practice, it is about those who receive care – and it helps us all.

By Claire Dorotik-Nana, LMFT

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We provide accredited, online continuing education courses for licensed healthcare professionals for the purposes of expanding their education and improving patient care.

The purpose of continuing education is to assure high standards of practice by requiring licensees to participate in on‑going educational activities. Through these experiences, licensees increase their competence and ensure they are providing evidence-based care to their patients/clients.

We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Overcoming the Stigma of Mental Illness

New Online CE Course @pdresources.org

Overcoming the Stigma of Mental IllnessOvercoming the Stigma of Mental Illness is a new 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that explores the stigmas around mental illness and provides effective strategies to overcome them.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) defines mental illness stigma as “a range of negative attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors about mental and substance use disorders.” Mental health and substance use disorders are prevalent and among the most highly stigmatized health conditions in the United States, and they remain barriers to full participation in society in areas as basic as education, housing, and employment.

This course will explore the stigmas surrounding mental illness and provide effective strategies clinicians can use to create a therapeutic environment where clients can evaluate their attitudes, beliefs, and fears about mental illness, and ultimately find ways to overcome them. We will explore the ways in which mental illness stigmas shape our beliefs, decisions, and lives. We will then look at specific stigmas about mental illness, from the fear of being seen as crazy to the fear of losing cognitive function and the ways in which we seek to avoid these fears. We will then look at targeted strategies that, you, the clinician, can use to create a therapeutic alliance where change and healing can overcome the client’s fears. Lastly, we will look at the specific exercises you can use in session with your clients to help them address and overcome their biases and stigmas about mental illness. Course #21-24 | 2018 | 35 pages | 15 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

Course Directions

Online courses provide instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!