social anxiety

Social Anxiety: More than Shyness

Before we even begin, let’s reflect for a moment, shall we? Are you extremely afraid of being judged by others? Do you often stress out before leaving your home – especially when you have to go to really crowded places? Do you turn into a tornado of fabric trying on every article of clothing you own before attending an event? Are you very self-conscious in everyday social situations? Do you pretend to be on your phone or taking a call just to appear busy? Do you avoid meeting new people? What about people you know? Does this sound like you? If you have been feeling so for at least six months and it’s affecting your everyday tasks, you may just have a social anxiety disorder.

Read more

coping with a move

Coping with a Move

Relocating to a new city or town is stressful. Even if the move means you’re doing well in life. Change is scary. Uprooting yourself from the familiar is never comfortable. And there can be a number of challenges when trying to adjust to this new chapter. You may ask yourself questions such as “How will I ever learn my way around or meet new people?”. Or even, “Did I make the right choice? Will I be miserable here?”. The good news is you aren’t alone in these emotions and feelings. And there are a number of ways you can begin coping with a move.

Read more

strong recovery exercise

Building a Strong Recovery: Exercise and Addiction

Today’s blog is a collaboration piece written by Bethany Hatton. Bethany, a retired librarian with 32 years of experience, created PreventAddiction.info after her oldest grandson became addicted to opioids. Though she discovered there is no guaranteed way to prevent addiction; she was able to find many helpful resources that can keep the public up to date on the latest prevention, addiction, and recovery information.

It should come as no surprise that exercise is often used in drug and alcohol treatment. Maintaining a physically strong and active body will keep you healthy, but exercise has a few surprise benefits that can help you avoid drugs and alcohol.

Read more

child with depression

How to Parent a Child with Depression

If you’re a parent, you may have noticed that your child’s emotions vary from day to day. Sometimes your child may seem happy-go-lucky without a care in the world. But the next, they are more reserved, isolated, and down. As a parent, this can be difficult to watch, as you only want your child to be happy and fulfilled in their life. As your kids get older and their problems become more complex. And you have to transition into more of a supporting role, which can be difficult. Depression in children is often undiagnosed and untreated. This is because symptoms are passed off as normal emotional and psychological changes that occur during the growth processes. The good news is that it’s getting easier to parent a child with depression because treatment is becoming more and more accessible.

Read more

find hope

How to Find Hope

How to find hope. I’m not sure about you, but my hope levels have been a little low lately. I’m catching glimpses of it every so often. But I can never keep my grip on it for very long. Proverbs say, “He who has health has hope, and he who has hope has everything”. When you don’t have hope, you have no energy or motivation for therapy. Or for any effort to change your situation. What’s the use in reaching out to meet people?  You know you’ll be rejected.  Why bother exercising or cleaning your home or volunteering? It won’t really make a difference. You know you will always be lonely, depressed, anxious, unemployed, or stuck in the same situation that is making you miserable. You don’t want to risk the pain of further disappointment by even trying.

Read more

seasonal affective disorder

Seasonal Affective Disorder: A Guide

It’s been rainy and dreary in Pittsburgh lately. The seasons are changing. The days are getting shorter. And with the lack of sun, many of us are going to feel this shift. Especially for those that suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that’s related to changes in seasons. SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year. If you’re like most people with SAD, your symptoms start in the fall and continue into the winter months. Your energy feels drained and you may feel moody. Less often, SAD causes depression in the spring or early summer.

Read more

what is depression

What is Depression?

It’s normal to feel down once in a while. But if you’re sad most of the time and it affects your daily life, you may have clinical depression. This serious mood disorder causes severe symptoms. These symptoms affect how you feel, think, and manage your daily life. Depression also causes persistent feelings of sadness and loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities. The word depression is actually just an umbrella term for a number of different types, from major to atypical to dysthymia.

Read more

generalized anxiety disorder

Coping with Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Coping with generalized anxiety disorder. Anxiety. That word is everywhere today. Coworkers talk about it. So do your friends. Even your mom does! Anxiety involves feelings of worry, fear, and apprehension. And it’s typically experienced on cognitive, emotional, and physical levels. Maybe you have negative thoughts. Or you might feel scared and out-of-control. You might get really sweaty or start to tremble. Some people even feel short of breath. Does anxiety affect your life on a constant basis? Here are different treatment methods you can use to cope!

Read more

outdoor activities recovery

In Recovery? You Should Prioritize Outdoor Activities

Today’s blog is a collaboration piece written by Bethany Hatton. Bethany, a retired librarian with 32 years of experience, created PreventAddiction.info after her oldest grandson became addicted to opioids. Though she discovered there is no guaranteed way to prevent addiction; she was able to find many helpful resources that can keep the public up to date on the latest prevention, addiction, and recovery information.

There’s no magic solution to make your recovery journey quicker or easier. Recovery is a long, difficult journey, and there are many things that help you along the path. And, unfortunately, many things that impede your progress. As a result, you must actively seek out progress boosters, and outdoor activities certainly qualify as a positive outlet.

Read more

weighted blanket

Weighted Blankets: Do They Really Work?

Weighted blankets calm anxiety, according to science. In its simplest form, a weighted blanket is just that. A blanket that is intentionally heavier than a standard blanket. Remember how it felt to crawl underneath one of your great-grandmother’s quilts and how the heaviness of it felt comforting? It’s kinda like that. A study published in 2015 found that a weighted blanket lengthened average sleep time. The study also found a decreased disruptive movement of people suffering from insomnia. Study subjects also reported that they “liked sleeping with the blanket. They found it easier to settle down to sleep and had an improved sleep.”

Read more