List of all upcoming and archived webinars, including April 9 on impulse control problems

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Impulse Control Problems & Tourette Syndrome

April 9, 2014
Presented by Cathy Budman, MD

People living with Tourette Syndrome often struggle with impulse control disorders. While not limited to the TS community, this set of conditions frequently includes a wide array of impulsive and obsessive symptoms. This Wednesday Webinar will explore the some of the most common features observed among children and adults.

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List of all upcoming and archived webinars, including March 26 on creative arts therapy

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Using Creative Arts in Therapy: Benefits of Music, Dance/Movement and Art

March 26, 2014
Presented by Kathleen Nace, MT-BC, NMT

Creative Arts Therapy provides the opportunity to develop social skills, self-awareness, expressive and receptive language, self-esteem, and adaptive coping skills by providing a motivating modality for participants and self-expression and participation.

Participants in this webinar will learn how these modalities can be individually modified or adapted to fit a variety of needs and work with multiple ages and populations (Tourette Syndrome, ADHD, Autism, Anxiety, TBI, Cerebral Palsy, etc.).

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School meetings: How to make them easier

Ken Shyminskya former vice president of the Greater Toronto Chapter of the Tourette Syndrome Foundation of Canada, draws upon his personal experiences as an teacher and student with Tourette Syndrome to help children with TS and related disorders. He also has Tourette himself and is the founder of the website Neurologically Gifted.

School meetings are most often difficult for the parent but so important for your child.  Your child is special, requires special accommodations, your child’s behavior doesn’t follow the normal or expected behavior or your child isn’t learning as well as he or she could.

Perhaps it’s not your first meeting or perhaps the strategies being implemented aren’t working.  Perhaps your child’s teacher or school administration isn’t understanding your child’s difficulties and differences or are unable to offer help.  In any case, it usually provides for a stressful time for the parent … trying to make things better for your child.

I have attended countless school meetings.  My son, having Tourette Syndrome, Attention Deficit Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Oppositional Defiance Disorder, provides an unending barrage of challenges for the adults who help to shape his life.

Some of these school meetings have gone well, some have been a complete disaster.  I have survived them, dreaded them and finally, I now feel blessed that the adults in my child’s school understand his differences, see his challenges and strengths, listen to him and help to guide him and teach him.

School Meetings  NeurologicallyGiftedIn the past, have been at school meetings because my child was suspended for behaviour that was out of his control.  I have been to school meetings where I have been face to face with an adult who told my son he was faking and didn’t have Tourette Syndrome or coprolalia.

I have been to school meetings where I have been asked to keep my child home for all or part of school days.  I have been to school meetings where administration has asked my child’s psychiatrist how they can “turn a blind eye to his behavior and just let him get away with it?”  It has been a very heartbreaking and difficult road.

I have not always been able to follow these tips that I will share, but I do know that even the really, really bad school meetings would have been a little better if I had been able to remember these tips for school meetings: Continue reading

RAGE!!! Part 3: Talk about rage

Ken Shyminskya former vice president of the Greater Toronto Chapter of the Tourette Syndrome Foundation of Canada, draws upon his personal experiences as an teacher and student with Tourette Syndrome to help children with TS and related disorders. He also has Tourette himself and is the founder of the website Neurologically Gifted.

Rage triggers a biochemical change in a person which pre-empts choice, reasoning, rational thinking and self-control.  Through observation, as described in Neurologically Gifted’s article Rage 2:  Look, Listen and Focus, we found that it was possible to achieve an excellent understanding of the dynamics of rage in our home.

Through observation we learned about the triggers for our child’s rages – the events, situations and patterns that would usually lead up to a rage.  We also recorded what would calm some situations – strategies we already used throughout the day that helped to de-escalate volatile situations.

We developed some ideas about what we, as a family could do when stressors occurred that might lead to a rage.  Stress and frustration can be managed with love, support, communication and planning.

We practiced disengaging from the rage.  Disengaging can help by not escalating the situation and by watching (to keep our child safe during an episode). After completing our observations we then decided it was time to sit down with our child to talk about rage.

How to Talk About Rage

Before any discussion begins, it is important to remember that a child with neurological disorders may have difficulties in focus and attention.  Gaining self insight to behavior is challenging. It will be important to keep the child’s limits in mind when moving forward with the discussion.

For example, memory and learning are both severely impaired in the time immediately before and during a rage.  Our son Nathan would often have very little recollection of events (even hours before a rage).  Once a rage has begun, talking will escalate the rage (even words that are intended to help).  Nathan often misinterprets words or hears things that were not even spoken.  Even saying “I love you” can be inflammatory for him during a rage.

Father and Son Neurologically Gifted:  Talk About RageIt will require many weeks of ongoing conversations to communicate how rage occurs with your child. Continue reading

List of all upcoming and archived webinars, including March 12 on stress & anxiety in teens

THIS WEEK’S WEBINAR

Body Focused Repetitive Behaviors: Helping Teens and Young Adults Manage Stress and Anxiety

March 12, 2014
Presented by Rachel Strohl, Psy.D.

Often teens and young adults who have trichotillomania or other related body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs) also experience stress and worries. The stress can range from everyday worries in relationships, friendships, school, part-time work and so on, to anxiety disorders, which impair functioning and create significant distress.

The aim of this webinar will be for teens and young adults with trich or other BFRBs to learn to improve their management of stress and worries. Dr. Strohl will outline the cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) model of anxiety, which details the physiological, cognitive and behavioral components of anxiety. She will provide concrete skills for stress management, such as the use of personifying the fear, relaxation techniques, detective thinking and cognitive strategies, exposure tasks, and contingency reinforcement.

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