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!

What are Executive Functioning Skills?

Executive Functioning

Parents are often confused when they are told that their child has deficits in his “Executive Functions.” Those seem like big words to describe the frustrations of having a child who seems more disorganized than other children; the kid who often comes to school late and unprepared and always seems to be losing his homework, shoes, or games.

Executive functions are the self-regulating skills that we use every day in order to get any task done, from getting dressed and eating breakfast to getting a backpack packed and choosing which friend to play with. They help us plan, organize, make decisions, shift between situations or thoughts, control our emotions and impulsivity, and learn from past mistakes.

Dawson and Guare (2010) describe executive functioning skills as follows:

“Human beings have a built-in capacity to meet challenges and accomplish goals through the use of high-level cognitive functions called executive skills. These are the skills that help us to decide what activities or tasks we will pay attention to and which ones we will choose to do. Executive skills allow us to organize our behavior over time and override immediate demands in favor of longer-term goals. Through the use of these skills we can plan and organize activities, sustain attention, and persist to complete a task. Executive skills enable us to manage our emotions and our thoughts in order to work more efficiently and effectively. Simply stated, these skills help us to regulate our behavior” (p.1).

Executive functioning difficulties cause children and teens to struggle with many academic learning tasks. According to Howland (2010), executive functioning skills predict academic success more effectively than tests of academic achievement or cognitive ability. Children with poor executive functioning skills are at high risk for dropping out of school, as well as for social and behavioral problems (Lindsay & Dockrell, 2012). They often have compromised listening skills and difficulties following directions, which can compromise familial relationships and academic and social functioning.

Executive functioning difficulty is not necessarily considered a disability, yet it is a weakness in a key set of mental skills that helps connect past experience with present action. People use them to perform activities such as planning, organizing, strategizing, paying attention to and remembering details, and managing time and space.

Click here to learn more.

Course excerpt from:

Executive Functioning: Teaching Children Organizational SkillsExecutive Functioning: Teaching Children Organizational Skills is a 4-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that will enumerate and illustrate multiple strategies and tools for helping children overcome executive functioning deficits and improve their self-esteem and organizational abilities.

Executive functioning skills represent a key set of mental assets that help connect past experience with present action. They are fundamental to performing activities such as planning, organizing, strategizing, paying attention to and remembering details, and managing time and space. Conversely, executive functioning deficits can significantly disrupt an individual’s ability to perform even simple tasks effectively. Although children with executive functioning difficulties may be at a disadvantage at home and at school, adults can employ many different strategies to help them succeed. Included are techniques for planning and prioritizing, managing emotions, improving communication, developing stress tolerance, building time management skills, increasing sustained attention, and boosting working memory. Course #40-42 | 2017 | 76 pages | 25 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!

Learned Helplessness in Children

Learned Helplessness

A number of circumstances and conditions can predispose children to the damaging effects of repeated failure experiences and learned helplessness.

Possibly the most unfortunate consequence of the cumulative effects of these conditions on children is the eventual development of the belief that they are simply not able to perform up to the standards of their parents and teachers. Children who have never experienced success in school are afraid to challenge themselves academically. They do not put in the required effort, and give up before even making an attempt to succeed. These students develop self-defeating strategies that eventually lead to the very failures that they are attempting to avoid. After striving for unattainable goals and procrastinating, they become depressed and angry. Worse still, this sense of helplessness is sometimes influenced in a number of subtle ways by the behavior of parents and teachers, who unwittingly participate in the expectation that the child is not going to do well.

According to Eklund et al. (2015), learned helplessness creates three basic shortfalls in the child: cognitive, emotional, and motivational, thus destroying the child’s aspiration to learn. Once a child ceases to have the motivation to learn, it becomes even harder to engage him/her to attempt to understand something new, as they fall into becoming a helpless learner. To be clear, the child does not intentionally try to behave this way, but feels as though there is no other option, and that failure is inevitable. Once these practices are repeated and reinforced, the child builds an inappropriate response to learning, which becomes a habit. The child will continue in this way throughout his/her educational career, until something changes.

Red Flags of Learned Helplessness

  • Laying blame on the teacher:
    • “The teacher is unfair and picks on me, so I’m not going to do any of her assignments”
    • “It’s the teacher’s fault that I didn’t do well on the test because she didn’t remind me it was today, and I guessed at most of the items”
  • Making excuses for bad behavior to hide insecurities about struggling to learn:
    • “The hallway was too crowded, and when I got to the cafeteria there was no dessert left, so I trashed my tray and got sent to the office instead of going to my next class which, by the way, is the one where I don’t learn anything anyway.”
  • Exhibiting an “I give up” attitude:
    • “School is just boring, the work is dumb, the assignments are too hard (or too easy), and the teacher never checks homework anyway, except when she knows I don’t have it done.”
  • Pulling away or refusing to communicate to avoid confrontation:
    • “What happened in school today?” “I don’t want to talk about it.”
  • Children who feel judged instead of supported:
    • “My parents worry so much about my homework and school work. Why bother worrying about it myself?”
    • “I often feel like my parents won’t value me if I’m not as successful as they would like.”
    • “My parents say I can be anything I like, but deep down I feel they won’t approve of me unless I pursue a profession they admire.”

The progression from learning challenges to school failure looks like this: (note that school failure can initiate a spiral of further discouragement and reinforcement of self-defeating beliefs).

Learning Challenges  >  Lack of Success  >  Discouragement  >  Fixed Mindset  >  Learned Helplessness  >  School Failure

School failure is not, of course, the end of the story. Rather, it can be the beginning of a cascade of negative life outcomes such as problem drinking, mental health problems, criminal activity, and employment problems. While such outcomes are beyond the scope of this course, they do highlight the importance of intervening early with children who are at risk for school failure.

The “Cycle of Success,” by contrast, would proceed as follows:

Learning Abilities  >  Success  >  Encouragement  >  Growth Mindset  >  Self Confidence  >  School Success

Click here to learn more.

Course excerpt from:

Motivating Children to LearnMotivating Children to Learn is a 4-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that provides strategies and activities to help children overcome their academic and social challenges.

This course describes the various challenges that can sidetrack children in their developmental and educational processes, leaving them with a sense of discouragement and helplessness. Such challenges include learning disabilities, autism spectrum disorder, ADHD, behavior disorders, and executive functioning deficits. Left unchecked, these difficulties can cause children to develop the idea that they are not capable of success in school, precipitating a downward spiral of poor self-esteem and – eventually – school failure.

The good news is that much better outcomes can result when parents, teachers, and therapists engage children in strategies and activities that help them overcome their discouragement and develop their innate intelligence and strengths, resulting in a growth mindset and a love of learning. Detailed in this course are multiple strategies and techniques that can lead to these positive outcomes. Course #40-44 | 2018 | 77 pages | 25 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!

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!

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!

When Aging Becomes a Challenge

When Aging Becomes a Challenge

They are supposed to be your golden years. Your work is done, your finances are in order, and now you can enjoy your life. However, for many people, reaching retirement age brings many new physical and psychological issues.

In a paper published in June in the journal Aging, scientists from the institute’s Medical Informatics and Systems Division found that spontaneous mutations occur in our bodies constantly, but the rate of change differed dramatically among various people.

These changes are often associated with diseases such as diabetes, kidney failure, cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and Alzheimer’s disease, and are linked to exposure to various environmental stressors (Bavarva et al., 2014).

“We observed that certain portions of our genome age 100 times faster than others. Microsatellites, once considered ‘junk DNA,’ are known to be associated with many diseases. They change much faster than individual DNA bases (known as single nucleotide polymorphisms, or SNPs), so it is important that future studies look at this very dynamic part of the human genome,” explains Harold Garner, a professor of biological sciences and computer science at Virginia Tech and a professor of medicine at the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research Institute (Garner, 2014).

Things are not as simple as we once thought, and aging doesn’t seem to follow any sort of predictable pattern. Nor are the changes simply physical.

According to a longitudinal study of men and women ranging in age from 25 to 104, self-esteem rises steadily as people age but starts declining around the time of retirement.

Self-esteem, which is related to better health, less criminal behavior, lower levels of depression and, overall, greater success in life was found to be lowest among young adults but increased throughout adulthood, peaking at age 60, before it started to decline (Orth et al., 2016).

Further, on average, women had lower self-esteem than did men throughout most of adulthood, but self-esteem levels converged as men and women reached their 80s and 90s. Blacks and whites had similar self-esteem levels throughout young adulthood and middle age. In old age, average self-esteem among blacks dropped much more sharply than self-esteem among whites – even after controlling for differences in income and health (Orth et al., 2016).

Even more interesting was the finding that people of all ages in satisfying and supportive relationships tend to have higher self-esteem, however, despite maintaining higher self-esteem throughout their lives, people in happy relationships experienced the same drop in self-esteem during old age as people in unhappy relationships. Explains Kali H. Trzesniewski, PhD, of the University of Western Ontario, “Although they enter old age with higher self-esteem and continue to have higher self-esteem as they age, they decline in self-esteem to the same extent as people in unhappy relationships” (Trzesniewski, 2016).

While there are numerous theories as to why self-esteem peaks in middle age and then drops after retirement, such as a change in roles, an empty nest, retirement and obsolete work skills in addition to declining health, not one theory accurately explains the decline. However, through understanding the common physical and psychological challenges that the aging population faces, professionals who treat them can help ensure the highest levels of functioning, and a well-earned retirement.

Related Online Continuing Education (CE) Courses:

Aging: Challenges for CliniciansAging: Challenges for Clinicians is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE) course that provides a review of the aging process, illustrating potential challenges and effective solutions. Americans are living longer and there are proportionately more older adults than in previous generations due to the post-World War II baby boom. Many Americans are now living into their eighties and beyond. In healthcare, the volume of older people may soon outnumber the supply of healthcare professionals trained in geriatrics. Aging presents many challenges for people as they encounter new physical and psychosocial issues. It is vital for healthcare professionals to be familiar with the challenges of aging in order to effectively treat the aging population. This course will provide information on the normal process of aging, and point out problems commonly thought to be normal that require medical or psychological evaluation and treatment. Case examples will illustrate scenarios of aging persons who may be at risk but are not aware there is a problem. Use this information for referral as appropriate to ensure the highest level of functioning for your patients. Course #31-01 | 2017 | 54 pages | 20 posttest questions

Biology of AgingBiology of Aging: Research Today for a Healthier Tomorrow is a 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that reviews the research on aging and provides insight into where the science is heading. What is aging? Can we live long and live well—and are they the same thing? Is aging in our genes? How does our metabolism relate to aging? Can your immune system still defend you as you age? Since the National Institute on Aging was established in 1974, scientists asking just such questions have learned a great deal about the processes associated with the biology of aging. Technology today supports research that years ago would have seemed possible only in a science fiction novel. This course introduces some key areas of research into the biology of aging. Each area is a part of a larger field of scientific inquiry. You can look at each topic individually, or you can step back to see how they fit together, interwoven to help us better understand aging processes. Research on aging is dynamic, constantly evolving based on new discoveries, and so this course also looks ahead to the future, as today’s research provides the strongest hints of things to come. Closeout course #20-85 | 2012 | 30 pages | 15 posttest questions

Alzheimer’s - Unraveling the MysteryAlzheimer’s – Unraveling the Mystery is a 3-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that describes the risk factors, effective steps for prevention, strategies for diagnosing and treating, and the search for new treatments for AD. Alzheimer’s dementia is a growing concern among the aging Baby Boomers; yet, modern science points the way to reducing the risks through maintaining a healthy lifestyle. This course is based on a publication from the National Institute on Aging, which describes healthy brain functioning during the aging process and then contrasts it to the processes of Alzheimer’s disease. Strategies for reducing caregiver stress are also briefly discussed. Closeout Course #30-54 | 2008 | 45 pages | 21 posttest questions

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!

Selective Mutism: New ASHA CEU Course

New ASHA-Approved Online CEU Course @pdresources.org

Selective Mutism: Identification and TreatmentSelective Mutism: Identification and Treatment is a new 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that details the identification and treatment of children who are “selectively mute.”

It is expected that young children, upon beginning school, will be able to use expressive language to communicate with their teacher and their peers. Negative educational and social outcomes can occur when children lack this essential skill.

Children who persistently withhold speech or who fail to speak in social situations in which it is expected (usually at school), despite speaking normally in other situations (usually at home), have been identified as being “selectively mute.” Selective Mutism is diagnosed when the refusal/failure to speak interferes with educational or social achievement.

This course will discuss the criteria, causes, comorbidities, and treatments for this rare disorder, detailing behavioral, psychosocial, and cognitive behavioral interventions. Essential points will be illustrated by the inclusion of a real-life case study. Course #21-22 | 2018 | 39 pages | 15 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

This course is offered for .2 ASHA CEUs (Introductory level, Professional area).

ASHA credit expires 4/16/2021. ASHA CEUs are awarded by the ASHA CE Registry upon receipt of the quarterly completion report from the ASHA Approved CE Provider (#AAUM). Please note that the date that appears on ASHA transcripts is the last day of the quarter in which the course was completed.

Course Directions

This online course provides 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!

The Psychological Benefits of Animals

The Psychological Benefits of Animals

“Thanks to this rigorously designed study, we now have strong evidence that pet therapy is an effective tool to help cancer patients get through challenging treatments,” said Gabriel A. Sara, MD, Medical Director, Infusion Suite at Mount Sinai Roosevelt, and Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (Sara, 2015).

With mounting evidence in human and veterinary medicine that the emotional bond between people and companion animals can have a positive impact of emotional and physical health, Sara, along with J. Michael McFarland, DVM, DABVP, Zoetis group director of Companion Animal Veterinary Operations, followed 37 adult patients (25 male; 12 female) for six weeks while they received daily 15-to-20-minute animal-assisted visits. The patients had aggressive cancers in the head and neck, and chose rigorous combined chemotherapy and radiation therapy in advance of a smaller than otherwise planned surgery.

Assessments were made at baseline, week 3, and end of therapy (7 weeks) and included social and emotional well-being over a period where it would normally be expected to decline with the cumulative side-effect burdens of treatment.

Instead, social well-being showed an increase (overall p = 0.03; p baseline versus week 3 = 0.02; baseline versus week 7, p = 0.04). The means for emotional well-being also showed small increases over time, which were not significant when time was analyzed by itself. After controlling for declines in physical well-being at each time point, the increases in emotional well-being were both statistically significant (overall p- value = 0.004) and clinically meaningful (Fleishman et al., 2015).

Other studies have shown that animal-assisted therapy reduces symptoms of anxiety and loneliness among college students (Stewart et al, 2014), and reduces the need for medication after joint replacement surgery (Havey et al., 2014).

Animals also serve as “social ice-breakers” for stressed people which may motivate them to enroll in therapy (Gelnk et al., 2014) and can combat homesickness (Binfet & Passmore, 2016).

With benefits like this it makes sense that, more and more, animals are finding their way into therapy. But what are the best ways to work with animals? What populations are the best suited for? Are there any contraindications?

Knowing answers to questions like these allows clinicians to utilize the natural human-animal bond to help reach people who might otherwise be hesitant, help them connect more fully, and reach their therapeutic goals.

Click here to learn more.

Animal Assisted TherapyAnimal Assisted Therapy is a 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that provides the information and techniques needed to begin using the human-animal bond successfully to meet individual therapeutic goals. In Animal-Assisted Therapy (AAT) the human-animal bond is utilized to help meet therapeutic goals and reach individuals who are otherwise difficult to engage in verbal therapies. AAT is considered an emerging therapy at this time, and more research is needed to determine the effects and confirm the benefits. Nevertheless, there is a growing body of research and case studies that illustrate the considerable therapeutic potential of using animals in therapy. AAT has been associated with improving outcomes in four areas: autism-spectrum symptoms, medical difficulties, behavioral challenges, and emotional well-being. This course is designed provide therapists, educators, and caregivers with the information and techniques needed to begin using the human-animal bond successfully to meet individual therapeutic goals. Course # 21-19 | 2018 | 37 pages | 15 posttest questions

This online course provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. After enrolling, click on My Account and scroll down to My Active Courses. From here you’ll see links to download/print the course materials and take the CE test (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).

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!

50% Off Closeout CE Sale

Spring Cleaning/Closeout CE Sale @pdresources.org

Spring is here (although someone needs to tell the weather!) and we’re cleaning house. We’ve added more courses to our Closeout list (at 50% off!) and will be retiring all of our “test only” courses on June 30th. Great time to stock up on CE!

Humor-in-Therapy

2 Hours CE $14.50!

Unusual-Paraphilias

1 Hour CE $7!

Forensic Psychology

1 Hour CE $7!

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Young-Client-is-Defiant

3 Hours CE $24.50!

HIV-AIDS

1 Hour CE $7!

Apps-for-Autism

3 Hour CE Test $17.50

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Psychosexual-Syndromes-1

3 Hours CE $19.50!

Clergy-Stress-and-Depression

4 Hours CE $29.50!

Therapeutic-Aspects-of-Running

1 Hour CE $7!

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Autism-Movement-Therapy

2 Hours CE $14.50!

Frontotemporal-Disorders

1 Hours CE $6!

ADHD

3 Hours CE $21!

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Communication-with-Elders

2 Hours CE $14.50!

Psychosexual-Syndromes-2

2 Hours CE $14!

Learning-Differences

3 Hours CE $24.50!

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Nutrition-for-Eating-Disorders

3 Hours CE $19.50!

Diabetes-Mellitus

2 Hours CE $14!

Adult-Obesity

2 Hours CE $14!

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Temperamental-Differences

2 Hours CE $14.50!

Anti-Social Youth

3 Hours CE $19.50!

How Children Become Violent

6 Hours CE $42!

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Prices above include 50% discount. You may also use a coupon at checkout for additional savings! Thank you for your business. :)

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!