Behavioral Disorder

7 12, 2015

Brain Changers in the News

By |December 7th, 2015|ADD (AD/HD), Anxiety Disorder, Behavioral Disorder, Brain Function, Christian Counseling, Migraine, Neurofeedback, News & Events, Wellness|Comments Off on Brain Changers in the News|

Galveston Brain Changers – Business Spotlight
Managing ADHD without Medications — an Interview with Dr. Stephanie McClung 
Moving Heaven and Earth – Dr. Stephanie McClung and Mindy Fritz
Brain Changers’ Effective Integrated Treatment of Anxiety Disorders
Brain Changers Launches Website Providing Information on Effectively Treating Anxiety, Migraine, ADD (ADHD), Behavioral Disorders, and More.

24 09, 2014

Communicating with Teens

By |September 24th, 2014|Anger and Rage, Anxiety Disorder, Behavioral Disorder, Depression, Parenting|Comments Off on Communicating with Teens|

The teenage brain is adapting and growing daily. Development of the pre-frontal cortex (responsible for executive functioning and the ability to make wise decisions, set and achieve goals, and communicate effectively) continues to form until about age 24. Thus, even emotionally healthy teens struggle with decision-making and healthy communication.
Anyone who has either taught or raised a teenager is acutely aware that communicating with teens has the potential to be a frustrating and sometimes awkward event. When a teenager is dealing with issues of anxiety, depression, adhd, behavioral disorder, or other mental health disorder, communication can be even more challenging.
The Grant-Halliburton Foundation recently sponsored a dynamic conference entitled, “When Life Hands You Teenagers.”  One of the speakers, Michelle Kinder, from Momentous Institute, shared some great insights for communicating with teens during her session, “Connecting with Teens: Using the Side Door When the Front Door Slams in Your Face.”

Build a Safe Relationship:
Two important elements for adults to consider regarding building healthy communication with teens were addressed in this seminar. The first includes fostering a safe relationship with your teen. Teachable moments are priceless, but when a stressed teen is in the middle of a rage or meltdown, this is not the time to teach a valuable lesson about respect or responsibility. When a teen’s brain is going haywire, very little information will be retained! Kinder refers to this as being dysregulated, and this word clearly describes what is going on in the teenage brain during a stressful situation. Wait until both of you are calm, collected, and thinking clearly before seizing that teachable moment!

Consider the River of Well-Being:
Another element for adults to consider when communicating with a teen is described by the [...]

27 08, 2014

Does My Child Have a Learning Disability?

By |August 27th, 2014|ADD (AD/HD), Behavioral Disorder, Learning Disability, News & Events|Comments Off on Does My Child Have a Learning Disability?|

As parents post pictures of their children on this first day back to school, I can’t help but wonder how many parents are already dreading the first phone call from the teacher about their child’s behavior in class or the impending meltdown when she is struggling with homework.
When a child misbehaves in school or does not complete their work as assigned, adults will often label it AD/HD or a Behavioral Disorder. However, the underlying issue may be a Learning Disability. Behaviorally, the symptoms may appear the same. The brain function issues causing the symptoms can actually be something very different.

Pre-K and Kindergarten:
As early as pre-K or Kindergarten, a child with a learning disability may begin to display a learned helplessness. Rather than fail, he may simply not attempt the assignment. The teacher may describe your child as impulsive, inattentive, easily distracted, or lazy.
On the other hand, especially if your child is quiet and compliant, she may rush through an assignment and receive a poor grade. It is often assumed that if she would just slow down, she would do much better. The truth of the matter is that she may not be able to complete the assignment because of a learning disability, and hurrying is her way of complying with the rules.

As a child with a learning disability progresses through school, he or she will begin to fall further behind each year. A child’s intelligence level, his ability to process information, and the severity of the learning disability will all help determine how early a disability is diagnosed.
Typically, between 2nd and 3rd grade, the learning disabled child may begin to complain about going to school, homework becomes a source of [...]

24 07, 2014

Transformative Education and Mental Health

By |July 24th, 2014|ADD (AD/HD), Anxiety Disorder, Behavioral Disorder, Depression, Learning Disability, News & Events|Comments Off on Transformative Education and Mental Health|

Many children and teens struggle with mental health issues which can make traditional education a daily burden that aggravates symptoms. As the mother of a daughter who suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in 9th grade, I know all too well the stress of worrying about a child’s physical and mental health while trying to meet the attendance and academic requirements of the school, district, and state.
When brain function is out of balance, the chemicals produced in the brain are also out of sync. Children and teens who deal with anxiety, depression, learning disability, ADHD, behavioral disorder, or any disorder that involves brain function may have to work very hard to accomplish even the simplest of activities. This is because the brain is working so laboriously to perform daily tasks.

Click here for a more complete list of disorders treated by Brain Changers
Traditional education has rigorous expectations with regard to time structure, behavior, academic requirements, and socially accepted norms. This is understandable, given the federal and state requirements for students, teachers, and the education facility as a whole.
Transformative education refers to education that falls outside of the normal expectations typically found in most public and private schools. Because transformative education allows for flexibility in scheduling and academic requirements, it can be very beneficial for students who struggle in the traditional school.
Two Examples of Transformative Education
The MorningStar Academy is an online, private Christian school that is fully accredited. Students have access to a virtual teacher for help, they are required to complete daily assignments, and grades are based upon individual assignments and evaluations.  This type of setting is ideal for the student who requires multiple breaks during the day or who otherwise needs [...]

18 03, 2014

Parent Testimonial for Brain Changers

By |March 18th, 2014|ADD (AD/HD), Attachment Disorder, Behavioral Disorder, News & Events, Testimonials|Comments Off on Parent Testimonial for Brain Changers|

I’m am so excited to have found Stephanie and Mindy!!!
After 10 years of searching for an effective treatment for my son ( now 15 in 9th grade) I found Brain Changers! Today I went to my son’s parent – teacher conferences and for the first time in his school career, I came out with a smile!!!
Words cannot express my gratitude to Brain Chahngers for giving my son a drug free, permanent solution to his emotional and behavioral issues. They treat the root cause of his issues and today every single teacher noticed positive changes after just one month of treatments. We still have a long way to go but I’ve never experienced such results.
My son had previously been in two different inpatient residential treatment programs for 18 months and 12 months respectively with no real success. He was diagnosed with AD/HD, conduct disorder and Reactive Attachment Disorder. Our family has had YEARS of frustration and despair.
Finally I see a light at the end of the tunnel. His brain map (qEEG) clearly showed the source of the problem. Literally one month later my child has is noticeable calmer, more compliant, laughing more and is more confident in school.
Thanks to Brain Changers, I know he will be a successful, fully functioning member of society. Stephanie and Mindy are a loving and caring team of professionals!
Thank you both for giving my family the much needed hope and true tangible results.
Kimela Robertson
Fairview, Texas

Contact us today to see how we can help your teen! 409-300-3113

18 02, 2014

Recreational Marijuana Spells Trouble for Teens – Part 3 (School-Related Problems)

By |February 18th, 2014|Addiction, Behavioral Disorder, marijuana, News & Events|Comments Off on Recreational Marijuana Spells Trouble for Teens – Part 3 (School-Related Problems)|

A number of studies have been conducted to determine the effect that marijuana use has on students’ grades and behavior. Long-term use before the age of 18 often causes changes in the brain’s structure and functioning. This results in permanent cognitive deficits that include attention, verbal abilities, learning issues, and memory problems.

Recreational Marijuana Spells Trouble for Teens – Part 1 (Effects on the Brain)
Research has shown that regular use beginning before the age of 18 can result in an 8 point drop in adulthood IQ by age 38. A very thorough meta-analysis that included 48 relevant studies found that marijuana use is consistently associated with reduced educational success, including grades and chances of graduating.

The Influence of Medical Marijuana Laws
Medical Marijuana is legal in 20 states. Since the rise of medical marijuana, teen use has increased exponentially throughout the country. This has led to a change in how students perceive marijuana. In 2013, Monitoring the Future funded a study questioned 40,000 middle and high school students and found that 60% of those interviewed believe that regular marijuana use is NOT harmful. Those numbers are alarming!

The Influence of Recreational Marijuana Laws
Additionally, recreational marijuana is now legal in two states, Colorado and Washington. In these states, teen use exceeds much of the country. There is a growing body of research and evidence that scientifically proves that marijuana use among teens has detrimental effects. A snapshot of student statistics in these two states reveals very alarming numbers related to marijuana use.

Recreational Marijuana Spells Trouble for Teens – Part 2 (Dependency)
In the state of Washington, approximately 23% of students who do not use marijuana received mostly C’s, D’s, and F’s on their report cards. However, [...]

11 02, 2014

Recreational Marijuana Spells Trouble for Teens – Part 2 (Dependency)

By |February 11th, 2014|Addiction, Behavioral Disorder, marijuana, News & Events|Comments Off on Recreational Marijuana Spells Trouble for Teens – Part 2 (Dependency)|

Cannibas, or marijuana, is the drug of choice for teenagers, mainly because it is perceived to be of little harm by many. It is important to look at the facts and the science regarding the actual effects of THC on the body and brain before deciding to partake of today’s most commonly used drug.

Click here for Recreational Marijuana Spells Trouble for Teens – Part 1
Marijuana is more addictive today than ever before. For many years, the level of THC averaged 2.3%. Today, THC levels average over 8%, and can reach as high as 35% in medical grade marijuana. The results of this increase in potency include greater damage to the body and brain, and a growing issue with dependency, especially among youth.

Click here for Some Negative Effects of Marijuana
Developing Dependency:
Dr. Christian Thurstone, president of Colorado Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Society, also heads a teen rehabilitation center, Adolescent STEP: Substance Abuse Treatment Education & Prevention Program. He recently reported that 95% of patient referrals to this program are due to marijuana use, citing that exposure to marijuana before the age of 18 leads to a 17% chance of developing dependency on the drug. In late 2013, in preparation for Colorado’s new law regarding recreational marijuana, Dr. Thurstone doubled his staff at STEP.

Additionally, on January 7, 2014, Dr. Thurstone reported the following in an interview with ABC News:

“Our kids are presenting more severe addictions; it takes them longer to get a clean urine drug screen.” He then added, “Higher-potency marijuana can increase the risk of psychotic episodes in some teens … Adolescent exposure to marijuana (raises) risk of permanent psychosis in adulthood.”

In Washington, the number of persons receiving treatment for marijuana dependency has [...]

24 12, 2013

All Behavioral Disorders are Not the Same: Part 2

By |December 24th, 2013|Behavioral Disorder, News & Events|Comments Off on All Behavioral Disorders are Not the Same: Part 2|

Even though Conduct Disorder and Oppositional Defiant Disorder have different characteristics, they are both Behavioral Disorders and both require treatment to effectively overcome the symptoms. Please read All Behavioral Disorders are Not the Same: Part 1 for a more detailed discussion on the differences between these two disorders.
Effective Treatment:
Research has shown that neurofeedback is an effective form of treatment for both ODD and CD.
There is a neurological/physiological aspect to these conditions; neurofeedback addresses the brainwave activity that is out of balance. As brainwaves return to a normal state through neurofeedback therapy, and the child/family undergo weekly counseling sessions to address unhealthy thought/behavior patterns, symptoms are reduced or eliminated. The number of sessions varies for these disorders, but it is common to find that ODD and related issues, including AD/HD and anxiety, often respond in 50-60 sessions; CD and the co-morbid conditions typically take 80 sessions or more.
How We Can Help:
At Brain Changers, we treat children/adolescents with ODD and CD through neurofeedback and counseling. We also work very closely with the family in counseling sessions. It is important for these families to understand that the earlier they seek treatment after symptoms start, the more quickly this therapy is effective!
Especially with CD, parents may become discouraged when they don’t see results right away. We explain it like this: A man takes a sledge-hammer to a block of marble. He pounds the marble 100 times and nothing happens. On the 101st stroke with the hammer, the marble breaks into pieces. It wasn’t the 101st stroke that caused the marble to break; it was the 100 strokes before it that caused the last blow to finally smash the marble. Thus, it is [...]

17 12, 2013

All Behavioral Disorders are Not the Same: Part 1

By |December 17th, 2013|Behavioral Disorder, News & Events|Comments Off on All Behavioral Disorders are Not the Same: Part 1|

Having a child with a behavioral disorder is no easy task for parents and siblings. Regardless of the age of the child, when Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) or Conduct Disorder (CD) is present, this child attempts to rule the roost and call the shots in the home! Unhealthy patterns can emerge for the entire family; the child’s manipulation and anger grow as they consistently work to his/her benefit, parents become increasingly exasperated at trying to appease their child in hopes of bringing peace to the home, siblings act out in an attempt to express their frustration, or they withdraw from the family in an attempt to survive outside of the chaos!
There are some very distinct differences between these childhood behavioral disorders. They both present with unacceptable behaviors that must be tackled effectively for healing to take place. Additionally, it is imperative to address both disorders, as these disorders always have a chance of progressing! ODD has the potential to develop into full-blown CD, and a small percentage of CD youth develop full-blown Antisocial Personality Disorder (ASPD) by age 18.

Oppositional Defiance Disorder:
For a diagnosis of ODD to be made, the disturbance in behavior must be causing significant problems in school, in relationships with family and friends, and in the workplace. ODD will not be diagnosed if the therapist suspects that the child’s or teen’s behaviors are being directly caused by another psychotic or mood disorder, such as bipolar disorder.
Although children and teens with ODD will show some of the same behaviors as those with conduct disorder, including being very negative, angry and defiant, their behavior generally stops short of the mean or cruel behavior that is present in conduct disorder, such as [...]

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    Is it Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) or Conduct Disorder (CD)?

27 06, 2013

Is it Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) or Conduct Disorder (CD)?

By |June 27th, 2013|Anger and Rage, Behavioral Disorder|Comments Off on Is it Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) or Conduct Disorder (CD)?|

All children misbehave. It is a part of growing up, testing the waters, and coming of age. The majority of children, however, learn from correction and discipline. They choose more appropriate behaviors when the next opportunity presents itself, because their desire is to learn from mistakes and enjoy growing up without chronically being in trouble!
Behavioral Disorders and the Home:
A child with a behavioral disorder appears to be wired differently. Having this child in the home is no easy task for parents or siblings. Whether a teen or just a few years old, when symptoms of Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) or Conduct Disorder (CD) are present, the child with a behavioral disorder rules the roost and calls the shots! The child’s manipulation, anger and hostility, and defiance grow as he or she consistently strives to control the environment. He may also experience symptoms of anxiety or depression, and/or ADD (AD/HD).This child has a very strong sense of entitlement, and the home may become a tumultuous place of unrest. Unhealthy patterns emerge for the entire family; parents become increasingly exasperated and regularly appease their child in hopes of bringing peace to the home, siblings act out in an attempt to express their frustration or withdraw from the family in an attempt to survive, and/or one parent and siblings may spend significant time away from the home in an attempt to avoid the chaos!
How do I know which disorder describes my child?
According to the criteria used to diagnose ODD and CD, there are some definite differences between these disorders. Both are behavioral disorders, and both present with unacceptable behaviors that must be tackled effectively for healing to take place for the child and the home. Additionally, it is [...]