Welcome to the January Behavioral Health Blog!
HealthPoint Internal Behavioral Health Department Updates:
We currently have two internal Behavioral Health providers at HealthPoint: Saori Rivera is our Psychologist; she is at our BCS Clinic full-time. Theresa Fusaro is our Licensed Professional Counselor and works out of our Madisonville Clinic full-time.
**We have hired a telehealth company that focuses on tele-psych services. We anticipate Integrative Health Centers will be fully on board in March 2023. Through them, we will have a consulting psychiatrist, a psychiatric nurse practitioner, and at least one more Licensed Professional Ccounselor. More to come on that.
Behavioral Health Helpful Reminders:
What is Mindfulness?
Basically, an exercise for your brain, much like push-ups or sit-ups are for your physical body. Why does it matter? Because it literally changes the structure and function in specific areas of the brain if practiced regularly.
It “strengthens,” i.e., Increases your brain’s ability to handle stress and produce feelings of relaxation. It Decreases your feelings of anxiety. Much research and brain imaging studies show that it increases “resiliency” – essentially, our ability to cope effectively with chronic stress.
Other specific benefits?
Increased ability to focus and self-regulate (self-soothe), decreased blood pressure, decreased production of stress hormones (e.g., cortisol and adrenaline), better sleep, reduced chronic pain, etc.
How do you do it?
There are many, many effective mindfulness exercises, but here’s a quick 1-minute sample that you can do anywhere on yourself, but you can also easily lead an anxious patient through it as well:
Box Breathing: A Mindfulness Excercise
This is a great exercise to do whenever you’re waiting, for example:
- on hold on the phone
- at a traffic light
- in the doctor’s office
It’s a highly structured breathing exercise requiring your full attention.
You breathe in specific counts while visualizing a box:
- Inhale to the count of 4 as you visualize the top edge of a box.
- Hold your breath for a count of 4 as you go down along the right side.
- Exhale for a count of 4, moving from right to left along the bottom edge.
- Hold for another count of 4, going up along the left side, back to the top.
- Repeat for several cycles for at least 1 minute.
If you’d like to try a guided demonstration, view the video Box Breathing – 1 minute in length by Conscious Works on YouTube.
We are Here to Help!
For any questions or concerns, please get in touch with our Behavioral Health Program Manager, Charise Troncin, RN: email@example.com