Monday, June 21


Monday, June 21, 2021

12:00 - 1:00 PM Breakout Session 1
 Trauma Assessment Treatment Track
Self-Compassion for Trauma Survivors
Presented by Shedeh Tavakoli, LCPC, CCMHC, ACS, CRC
Research has demonstrated the benefits of including self-compassion-based treatment for counseling survivors of trauma (Boykin, et. al., 2018). However, there are unique challenges that compromise the effectiveness of these interventions for survivors of childhood trauma. According to research, psychological inflexibility increases the negative effects of fear of self-compassion. Perceived danger leads to experience of arousal, avoidance, or intrusions. These three categories correspond to the stress response of fight, flight, or freeze as well as our reactions to the experienced internal stress: self-criticism, self-isolation, and self-absorption. According to Neff & McGeehee (2010) individuals who lack self-compassion tend to have insecure attachment patterns, have critical caregivers, and come from dysfunctional families. Treatment of childhood trauma is enhanced when incorporating self-compassion-based treatment interventions to aid emotion regulation, processing, and responding to triggers. While lack of self-compassion and fear of self-compassion are two separate constructs, for the most therapeutic benefit, it is critical they are both addressed in therapy. Fear of self-compassion has been found to correlate with long-term functional impairments and increase the survivor’s likelihood of mistreatment of their own children. This may be manifested in becoming emotionally unavailable or neglectful of their children in ways that resemble their own childhood experiences. Therefore, it is important to find ways to facilitate self-compassion and stop the intergenerational engagement in childhood maltreatment. Incorpporating attachment, relational, and neuroscience-based interventions can facilitate the development of self-compassion and diminish the cycle of childhood maltreatment.
 Couples and Family Track | Addictions Track | Substance Use and Co-Occurring Disorders Track
Family Interventions in Problem Gambling Treatment
Presented by Cheryl B. Almeida, Ph.D.
Addiction researchers have identified three broad categories of family interventions in addiction treatment: Problem Gambling is a hidden addiction that ravishes the individual, the family, and often leads to financial ruin. In this session we will Identify hidden characteristics and patterns of family conflicts resulting from relationship with the Pathological Gambler. Let's bring this hidden addiction into the light and learn and identify appropriate treatment methodologies to facilitate family systems communication, psychosocial relationships and recovery.

2:00 - 3:15 PM Breakout Session 2
Trauma Assessment and Treatment Track | Integrated Care Track | Practice Issues Track | Healthcare Reform Track
The Darker Side of Sleep: Identifying and Treating Trauma-Induced Insomnia
Presented by David Engstrom, Ph.D., ABPP, DMHCS
More than 75% of American adults report difficulty sleeping. Many adults suffer from an insomnia disorder, which can have significant negative consequences on both mental and physical health if left untreated. Definition, causes and effects of insomnia are discussed. People with chronic insomnia will often describe their condition as a “vicious cycle” with increasing effort and desire put into trying to regain sleep. In a major study, 3 classes of childhood abuse history were highly associated with a greater risk of global sleep pathology, including frequent physical and emotional with sexual abuse, frequent physical and emotional without sexual abuse, and occasional physical and emotional abuse with sexual abuse.The most extreme class of abuse—frequent physical and emotional with sexual abuse—was associated with poorer self-reported sleep across many of the components, including poorer subjective sleep quality, greater sleep disturbances and greater use of sleep medication. Standardized measures of childhood abuse have been applied in many studies examining subsequent adult sleep issues. The effects of cortisol and inflammation on arousal and poor sleep is described. Clinical tools for assessment of insomnia will be provided, as well as evidence-based treatment methods. Finally, the issue of "which to treat first... trauma or insomnia" is discussed, in light of some newer techniques including CBT-I, Trauma-Focused CBT and DBT. The major takeaway for counselors to always inquire about a client's sleep patterns, especially if there is a history of childhood trauma.
 Technology Assisted Treatment Track | Neuroscience/Biological Bases of Behavior Track
Progressive Muscle Relaxation for Anxiety, Stress, Pain and Other Disorders
Presented by Joseph Kertesz, MA, LCMHD, NCC
Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR) was first developed by Edmund Jacobson in the 1930s, is a well-researched and effective intervention for stress, anxiety, panic, phobias, chronic pain in various forms, hypertension and bruxism. It is also considered to help with many other medical and somatization disorders. It is a systematic method of isolating, tensing and relaxing major muscle groups. It utilizes biological and neurological conditioning in order facilitate change in a persons psychological functioning. Positive physical changes following PMR has been reported in multiple studies. With practice, clients can reduce psychological and physical symptoms, and learn to call on the relaxation response during stressful events. It is often considered a cornerstone to systematic desensitization, mindfulness therapy, CBT, motivational interviewing, non-pharmacologic pain management, stress management, anger management, body awareness and neuroplasticity. It is simple and easy to teach. It is an effective adjunct to talk therapy when working with any person with the above issues. This presentation will review the research on the effectiveness of PMR. An extensive protocol for PMR will be presented. All participants will then be trained in PMR during the seminar. Finally, all participants will be given the skills to effectively add this treatment into their clinical practice. The presenter has utilized progressive muscle relaxation for over 40 years. He also participated in PMR use at Duke University's Chronic Pain Disorders Clinic and Cancer Center.

4:00 - 5:30 PM Breakout Session 3
 Diversity and Multicultural Track | Gender Identity and Sexual Identity Track
The Intersections of Marginality: Working with LGBTQ+ People of Color
Presented by Juan Eric Arévalo, MA, LMHC, NCC
The topics to be presented are key concepts, terminology, and best practices for working with people of color who are also queer, trans, and/or gender-expansive. We will look at how these identities affect attachment style, identity development, and relationships (familial, friendly, and romantic) and discuss examples and case studies to highlight the material covered. The format of the presentation will be a didactic lecture with interactivity and time allotted for questions and answers. A bibliography of the current research and supportive evidence will be provided. After this workshop, participants will: 1) Understand the key concepts, terminology, and best practices for working with people with multiple marginalized identities; 2) Describe the ways in which having multiple marginalized identities can affect attachment style, identity development, and relationships; and 3) Identify effective treatment strategies that will avoid recreating systemic marginalization and oppressive patterns within the counseling dyad.
 Diversity and Multicultural Track
Are We Really Helping? Counseling Diverse Clients with Eating Disorders
Presented by Paula Edwards-Gayfield, LCMHCS, LPC, CEDS-S
Emotional disorders can develop as a response to repeated exposure to messages and life stressors that Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) may experience. These stressors may be the result of societal, cultural, economic or familial messages or occurrences. As a result, a growing number of BIPOC individuals are seeking mental health resources to help them address eating disorders and co-occurring mental health issues. Considering the increasing recognition of the impact of systemic racism and associated historical/intergenerational trauma, many professionals are recognizing the need to heighten their cultural competency. Training and supervision of most mental health professionals does not include an understanding of the cultural underpinnings that impact the lived experiences of BIPOC individuals. These experiences include, and are often influenced by historical experiences of, discrimination, racism, colorism, and microaggressions. The lifetime accumulation of microaggressions amongst BIPOC individuals helps to define marginalized experiences. Explaining or communicating this to individuals that do not share their identity is difficult. This presentation offers an opportunity for providers to increase their cultural competence.