Dr. Steiner's Psychotherapy Tools

News You Can Use

This new section will have news, research and interesting factoids!

Check back every few weeks to see what I’ve added here.

Listen to my latest radio interviews and read my latest articles:

Feeling unprepared to deal with family over the holidays? My guide to navigating family dynamics can help you focus on the fun stuff and approach these special times with more ease. After all, holidays should be about enjoying our loved ones, not dreading them!

The healing power of music - Check out this terrific article "Fighting the Stigma of Mental Illness Through Music" in the New York Times.

For teens in crisis: Crisis Support Services of Alameda County has a texting service especially for teens.

Check out this blog: The Key to Helping Teens Cope with Traumatic Events: Connection

If you, or someone you care about deals with chronic pain, check out this important article What I Wouldn’t Change If My Health Were Restored Tomorrow: Nine things I wouldn’t change if I regained my health, by Toni Bernhard.

Having Surgery?

People Who Get Prompt Physical Therapy For Knee, Shoulder, Or Lower Back Pain May Have Less Need For Opioids, Researchers Say.

HealthDay (12/14, Norton) reported, “People who get prompt physical therapy for pain in the knee, shoulder or lower back may have less need for opioid” analgesics, research indicated. The 89,000 US patient-study revealed that “people given physical therapy for their pain were seven percent to 16 percent less likely to fill a prescription for an opioid.” The findings were published online in JAMA Network Open. Healio (12/14, Laday) also covered the study. ( From The Cleveland Clinic’s Rheumatology Daily Briefing December 17, 2018.)

No Sick Leave?

Workers without paid sick leave are more likely to experience psychological distress than those who take time off work when they became ill, finds a study in American Journal of Orthopsychiatry. Researchers examined data from nearly 180,00 respondents to the National Health Interview Survey, 41 percent of whom did not have paid sick leave. Those workers were more likely to experience sadness, hopelessness, nervousness and other distress symptoms than were workers with paid sick leave, even after controlling for physical health, alcohol use, sleep and other variables.” ( From Monitor on Psychology, In Brief: December 2017. P 12)

Wondering whether exercise is “all or none”? New research! Even a Little Bit of Exercise Could Help By Kelly Young

“Just 10 minutes of exercise a week might be better than no physical activity in terms of mortality risk, according to a study in the British Journal of Sports Medicine. And very high levels of exercise are more protective.
Researchers studied 88,000 U.S. adults aged 40 to 85 who participated in the National Health Interview Surveys and provided information about their weekly leisure-time physical activity. During a median 9 years' follow-up, 9% died.
After adjustment for BMI, smoking status, and other potential confounders, participants who had even a minimal amount of physical activity -- 10 to 59 minutes a week -- had a lower mortality risk than those who were inactive (hazard ratio, 0.82). The mortality benefit continued to grow with more activity -- even when people exercised more than 1500 minutes, over 5–10 times the amount recommended by guidelines (HR, 0.54).
The authors conclude that promoting physical activity "of any intensity and amount is an important approach to reducing mortality risk in the general population."

To read the original research/Link(s):
British Journal of Sports Medicine article (Free abstract)
Background: Physician's First Watch coverage of HHS physical activity guidelines (Free)

Sleep Matters! Did you know?

New research shows that sleeping well helps us stay healthy as we age. “Increasingly, scientists are discovering that how much and how well you sleep throughout adulthood can be a big factor in how healthy you stay into your golden years. Insufficient sleep increases the risk of disorders such as high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, stroke and depression. It’s also associated with cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease. “We see very large changes to sleep physiology with aging“ says Michael Skyland PhD an Assistant Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Baylor University who studies sleep neuroscience and cognition.… “We have 50 years of data showing that people who sleep between seven and eight hours live the longest. That relationship doesn’t change too much with age.“ Says psychologist Michael Grandner, PhD Director of the Sleep and Health Research Program at the University of Arizona. The quality of sleep you get is as important as the quantity. Other research showed that after two weeks of being forced to cut back to just six hours of sleep per night participants cognitive functions suffered they generally book believe they did up to do the shorter sleep and didn’t realize how much it change their performance. (Sleep,Vol. 26, No. 2, 2003).Hans Van Dongen, PhD To read more: sleep and human aging Mander, BA, Winer, J.R.&Walker,M.P. Neuron, 2017. (Abstracted from Kirsten Weir, Monitor on Psychology 2017 October, The Power of Restorative Sleep p. 38 -43.)

Brainstorming in Groups - is it effective?

Did you know that recent research has shown that individualized brainstorming that is later shared with a work group is more likely to elicit innovation and creative solutions than starting in a large group brainstorming? Leigh Thompson, a management professor at the Kellogg School, conducted a study on traditional brainstorming methods and found that only a few people do 60–75% of the talking.

Interested in effective brainstorming? Check out Leigh Thompson's online article: Brainstorming Doesn’t Work, try this technique instead. Available Here.

Online Support - Resource and Tips!

Susan Rogers, Director, National Mental Health Consumers’ Self-Help Clearinghouse www.mhselfhelp.org, suggests https://www.dailystrength.org/ for individuals looking for online support, based on her personal experience with this website. Because Daily Strength provides no privacy controls, she adds: “I would strongly caution everyone to create a new email address and username for this purpose, which should not identify them in any way, so they shouldn’t use their real name or location in the username or email address.” (Quoted with permission, personal correspondence, September 2019).

Tips for Coping with Disaster, Trauma, and PTSD

The American Group Psychotherapy Association has created blogs, articles and maintains updated information to help cope with disasters.
This free resource is available in the Outreach Resource section of the website, AGPA.org.

Here is another good PTSD resource from The National Center for PTSD (NCPTSD)


On The Lighter Side

If you love Excel (or not) and art, check out this amazing artist: Tatsuo Horiuchi


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© Ann Steiner, Ph.D. All rights reserved. Reproduction without the author's written consent is prohibited.

Last Updated: January 20, 2020