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Upcoming events

    • 02/17/2023
    • 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM
    • Childrens Services Council 2300 High Ridge Rd. Boynton Beach 33426
    Register

    Somatic Experiencing:  The Body Remembers

    Vassilia Binensztok, PhD, LMHC, NCC

    Traditional trauma therapy models have come up short in providing timely and lasting results, particularly in the case of complex trauma. We now know this is because traditional methods, like cognitive-behavioral therapy, rely on a “top down” approach – retelling and analyzing the trauma story and prescribing new behaviors.  Unfortunately, this can leave clients feeling re-traumatized, like they are reliving the trauma, and defeated when they struggle to implement behavioral changes. New research shows us that trauma is stored in body memory – as traumatic events trigger fight or flight nervous system responses, these experiences rewire the nervous system so that it reacts as though the trauma is continually occurring. Somatic Experiencing employs a “bottom up” approach, starting by addressing the body and nervous system patterns.  Rooted in Polyvagal Theory, Somatic Experiencing helps clients get out of chronic fight or flight states and repattern their nervous systems to experience more calm, joy, and connection.  These interventions also increase the effectiveness of cognitive-behavioral interventions, as clients are better able to employ those techniques from a regulated nervous system. This presentation will cover the basics of Polyvagal Theory and Somatic Experiencing, and demonstrate techniques that are useful for working with clients  recovering  from  trauma.

     Learning Objectives:

    1.      Articulate the theoretical basis for Polyvagal theory and Somatic Experiencing.
    2.      Describe the four nervous system responses and how they affect daily functioning.
    3.      Explain Somatic Experiencing techniques and how to incorporate them into talk therapy.

    2.0 CEU Hours 

    Dr. Vassilia Binensztok is a licensed and board certified mental health counselor in private practice in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Her practice, Juno Counseling and Wellness, employs several other therapists and offers a holistic approach to mental health.

    Dr. Binensztok holds a Bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College, a Master’s degree from Nova Southeastern University, and a Doctorate degree from Florida Atlantic University, as well as numerous certifications in trauma therapy, family therapy, and forensic evaluation. Dr. Binensztok is the author of several academic publications on therapeutic assessment and interventions, most recently releasing a textbook training clinicians to evaluate risk for child maltreatment in multicultural settings. As a therapist, researcher, and professor, she is an expert in anxiety, trauma, and relationships.

    Dr. Binensztok is passionate about helping the local community, particularly underprivileged youth.  She serves on the Board of Directors and development committee for Vita Nova, a local nonprofit that helps keep youth out of homelessness. On her free time, Dr. Binensztok enjoys trying new things, traveling, arts and culture, and meditation.

    Dr. Vassilia Binensztok is a licensed and board certified mental health counselor in private practice in Palm Beach Gardens, FL.  Additionally, Dr. Binensztok teaches graduate level counseling courses at Florida Atlantic University and Northwestern University.  Dr. Binensztok is the author of several academic publications on therapeutic assessment and interventions. As a therapist, researcher, and professor, she is an expert in anxiety, trauma, and relationships.


    • 03/10/2023
    • 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM
    • Children's Services Council of Palm Beach County 2300 High Ridge Road Boynton Beach, FL 33426
    Register


    Repairing Injured Relationships Overcome by Addictions

    Terrence Michael O’Neill, MS, LMHC

    “The drama of romantic bonding is the adult version of the bond between parent and child,” is how Dr. Sue Johnson, the founder of Emotion Focused Couple Therapy (EFT), describes how couples experience their relationship and how they link together their historical emotional experience and express those emotions together as a couple.

     She carefully explains how these human connection patterns replicate the same patterns between parent and child, that the past becomes the present in an intimate emotional, and interpersonal relationship.  However, this description might appear, on its face, a little innocent as it only hints at the fragrance of the mammoth collection of possible complications that couples, in their lifetime, struggle with during a marriage such as childbirth, physical injuries, hospitalizations, deaths of friends and family members, substance abuse, physical, verb, and emotional abuse, mental illness and the most traumatic: fraud, treachery, betrayal or, euphemistically described as, infidelity.

     Today, I would like to present some new scientific discoveries that explain why our relentless pursuit: pleasure and how it leads to pain and what to do about it from Dr. Anna Lembke's work in Dopamine Nation, Finding Balance in the Age of Indulgence. "We've all become vulnerable to compulsive overconsumption" because we have been rapidly moving from an environment of scarcity into an environment of plenty where we can "swipe right" for pleasure only to find pain and suffering close behind. 

    More importantly, I am going to compare and contrast, in a general way, 2-separate marital cases, and what worked for me.  How to Repair a Failing Marital Relationship when Addiction and Betrayal aggravate it?

    Learning Objectives:

    Objective 1 - Name it: betrayal and infidelity. Apply Carl Rogers’s client centered therapeutic style by developing an Unconditional Positive Regard for the clients in unison with the strategies in the book His Needs Her Needs.

    Objective 2 - Claim it: Ask attachment questions that will help you and your clients unpack their life’s truthful attachment injury narrative on how they arrived in this position using EFT Attachment Questionnaire and Dr. Jeffery Young’s Schema Questionnaire, the YSQ. 

    Objective 3 - Tame it: Show them, in a truthful loving way, how to take responsibility for repairing the Monster that has been let out and into these marital relationships by applying strategies in these books: Effortless Forgiveness, His Needs Her Needs, the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, and Dopamine Nation.   

    2.0 General CEU Hours

    Terrence Michael O’Neill, MS, LMHC

    Terrence Michael O’Neill is a Florida licensed mental health counselor in private practice at Restoring Hope of the Palm Beaches, a graduate of Palm Beach Atlantic’s Counseling Program, a passionate advocate for substance abuse counseling with more than 30 years of experience in the recovery field, a Recovery Advocate for the Headwaters program at the Hanley Center at Origins Behavioral Health, and a former public school teacher in the Oxnard, CA Public School District.  

    Publications and Copyrights: The Pleasure of Torment – A Series available on Amazon eBooks; Island of the Pleasure Seekers – Computer game Optioned by Namco, 2008; Benny Finds His Purpose – Inspirational Storybook for Adolescent Children, 2003, and a Substance Abuse Memory Tool M.S.I.R.S., 2016, and a Application For United States Letters Patent: Docket No. SK 08337, Automobile: Lap Covering System, 2009.  Association: American Counseling Association.

     Proudly Sponsored by:


    John Davis, President


    • 04/14/2023
    • 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM
    • Children’s Services Council. 2300 High Ridge Rd Boynton Beach Fl. 33426
    Register


    Your Brain On Drugs:  Homeostasis, Neurochemistry, and Healing from Addiction

    Judith Grisel, Ph.D.

    Regular use of any psychoactive drug causes the opposite effect. Chronic stimulants result in lethargy, sedatives lead to anxiety, and euphoriants guarantee misery. These consequences are so predictable because they follow directly from fundamental features of the nervous system, namely, its capacity to recognize, predict, and adapt to change. We will apply Solomon and Corbit’s Opponent Process Theory (1974) to understand the neural and behavioral changes wrought by chronic exposure to cannabinoids and narcotics and discuss how such adaptation during periods of rapid brain development results in lasting changes in brain structure and function that pave the way for future addictions.

    Among the many studies conducted by Dr. Grisel, is a 2018 set of findings on the neuroscience of addiction pointing out genetic risks of addiction, especially in women. Gender and the biology of the brain may make some women more likely to reach for a drink when they feel stressed out, and more likely to become dependent on alcohol. It was funded by the National Institute of Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse and published in the journal Addiction Biology

    This finding, the outcome of a three-year neuroscience study by Bucknell Professor Judith Grisel, could improve the screening and diagnosis of alcoholism and other addictions. It also adds to the mounting body of evidence about fundamental differences between the brains of men and women — differences that Grisel notes were ignored for decades, leaving a deep gender gap in medical research that persists today.

    Learning Objectives

    1. Understand how abused drugs coopt normal brain circuits to mark meaningful events
    2. Recognize that repeated exposure to these signals produces adaptation in the brain, as any routine perturbation leads to neural compensation in the form of an “opponent process” aimed at maintaining homeostasis
    3. Tie opponent processes to the hallmarks of addiction: tolerance, dependence, and craving
    4. Know how endogenous opiate pathways are exploited by recreational users and how natural antiopiate mechanisms undermine an addict’s efforts to get high
    5. Appreciate how the specific actions of delta-9-THC in the bring about subjective effects, as well as the profound neural adaptations to counteract these outcomes
    6. Connect robust brain plasticity in adolescents to an enhanced risk for addiction

    2.0 General CEU Hours

    Judith Grisel, Ph.D.,

    Judith Grisel, Ph.D., is an internationally recognized behavioral neuroscientist and a professor of psychology at Bucknell University with expertise in pharmacology and genetics whose research focuses on determining the root causes of drug addiction. A current focus of her laboratory is to understand the role of endogenous opiate neurotransmission in different trajectories of alcohol abuse in men and women. Professor Grisel recently published Never Enough: The Neuroscience and Experience of Addiction, a New York Times bestseller.

     Proudly Sponsored by:


    John Davis, President


    • 05/19/2023
    • 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM
    • Children’s Services Council. 2300 High Ridge Rd Boynton Beach Fl. 33426
    Register


    Disaster Proof: 7 Mistakes That Could Cost You Your License

    Dr. Denny Cecil-Van Den Heuvel, LMHC, LMFT

    The State of Florida is crystal clear on professional licensing for therapists.  We must stay within the guidelines outlined by FL Law 491 or risk disciplinary action by the board. The costs can be steep. It is not unusual for a well-meaning clinician to have his/her license suspended or even lose it. This workshop is a review of seven critical topics that all mental health clinicians must remember to stay within the laws and rules of this profession. Information from actual cases brought before past board meetings will be reviewed concerning broken laws and rules as well as penalties, costs, and possible remedies. Laws and rules coincide with ethical and professional boundaries mental health professionals are required to uphold. Dr. Van Den Heuvel is currently a member of the Florida 491 Board and sits in the review of all types of disciplinary cases regularly.

    Learning Objectives:

    1. Identify and describe seven of the most critical Laws and Rules that form the foundation of clinical practice under FL Law 491
    2. Articulate the costs and penalties most commonly given for practice errors in three key results areas
    3. Describe common paths of remedy for licensed clinicians found to be in violation of laws governing
    4. Identify and describe the most overlooked violations as seen by the actual 491 Board since 2018.

    2.0 General CEU Hours

    Dr. Denny Cecil-Van Den Heuvel, LMHC, LMFT

    Dr. Denny Cecil-Van Den Heuvel (also known as Dr. Denny) received her Master of Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 1991. She attained her license in North Carolina and continues to hold that license. She received her Ph.D. in Counselor Education with a minor in Psychology at North Carolina State University. During this time, Dr. Cecil-Van Den Heuvel also founded a state association, the Licensed Professional Counselors Association of North Carolina, along with her colleagues, and promoted legislative groundwork for Licensed Professional Counselors in the 1990s. Currently, this association has over seven hundred members and is under the umbrella of the American Mental Health Counselors Association.

    Dr. Denny is the Director of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Master Program at South University in West Palm Beach, FL. Dr. Denny was hired to set up this Master’s Program in 2003 at South University where it has successfully graduated students and recently attained CACREP accreditation. She also has a part-time private practice where she enjoys direct client interaction. She specializes in the treatment of adolescents and their families from her long-term experience with this population. Dr. Denny also treats a broad range of issues and currently treats children, adolescents, couples, and families. She works with trauma often and is trained in EMDR.

    Dr. Denny is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and a Licensed Marriage and Family Counselor in the state of Florida. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor in North Carolina. Dr. Denny has served as President of the Mental Health Counseling Association of Palm Beach County for two years, President of the Florida Mental Health Association for one year, and President of the Licensed Professional Counselors Association of North Carolina for two years. She is currently a member of the 491 Licensure Board in the State of Florida. She also holds a membership with the American Counseling Association, the American Mental Health Counseling Association, Florida Mental Health Counseling Association, Mental Health Counseling Association of Palm Beach County, and the Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County.

     Proudly Sponsored by:


    John Davis, President


    • 06/09/2023
    • 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM
    • Children's Services Council of Palm Beach County 2300 High Ridge Road Boynton Beach, FL 33426
    Register


    Binge Eating Disorder: Beyond the DSM-V

    Rachel Porter, PsyD

    Eating disorders are neurobiological disorders rooted in the brain causing medical and psychological issues. They are NOT a choice and not simply about control or weight management. They are affected by genetics, environment, and temperament. All play a role. Eating disorders are experienced by all genders, body sizes, and socio-economic statuses.

    The inclusion of Binge Eating Disorder in the DSM-V was a triumph worthy of celebration- and the diagnostic criteria are all too limited in their understanding of BED. In this presentation, we will discuss the multi-faceted and complicated experience of BED, the contributing factors for developing and maintaining BED, and a road map for recovery.

    Learning Objectives 

    1. Identify at least 3 aspects of BED left out of the DSM
    2. Identify at least 4 obstacles to identification and treatment of BED
    3. Identify multiple components of effective BED treatment.

    2.0 General CEU Hours

    Rachel Porter, PsyD

    Rachel Porter, PsyD, is an eating disorders professional living and working in Durham, NC. Dr. Porter has worked in the eating disorders field for over 15 years, all at higher levels of care. Dr. Porter is currently the Clinical Director over all of Carolina House’s clinical services. Dr. Porter is an anti-stigma advocate, a Health at Every Size provider, and committed to using her many privileges to support and provide compassionate and inclusive care. In her personal time, Dr. Porter enjoys spending time with her husband, friends, and cats, reading, and trying to see Hamilton: An American Musical as many times as humanly possible.

     Proudly Sponsored by:


    John Davis, President


Past events

01/20/2023 Rewiring the Brain: TMS & Therapeutic Applications of Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
12/16/2022 The Counselor’s Survival Guide to Ethical Counseling in a Politicized Era
12/16/2022 Medical Errors Avoidance: DSM-5 Resources for Differential Diagnosis
11/18/2022 Saving A life: The Marchman Act & Involuntary Addiction Treatment
10/14/2022 Creative Strategies in Developing an Ethical and Profitable Private Practice
09/16/2022 Medical and Behavioral Addiction: Holistic and Integrated Approaches to Substance Abuse and Mental Health
06/17/2022 Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: Assessment, Diagnosis and Treatment
05/20/2022 Troubled Teens: Working with "Gen Z"
04/22/2022 Cannabis Psychosis: Current Research. Recovery Strategies
03/18/2022 ACE Scores: Accounting for Toxic Stress During Childhood
02/11/2022 What's the Buzz? Exploring EMDR
01/14/2022 Personality Disorders: Adversity, Dysregulation and the Search for Secure Attachment
10/15/2021 How to Chill: Mindfulness with Teens for Rootedness and Humanity
09/10/2021 NARM & Working With Teenagers
06/11/2021 Targeting Trauma: Filling the Gaps
05/14/2021 Love Wins: Trauma, Adversity and Healing
04/16/2021 Rethinking Personality Disorders: The Search for Secure Attachment
03/12/2021 Bottomless: The Marchman Act and Other Radical Approaches to Addiction
02/12/2021 The Happiness Trap: Spirituality, Psychotherapy and Holistic Health
01/15/2021 Food and Mood: Eating and Emotional Regulation in the Pandemic
01/08/2021 Required Renewal Ethics Course 3 hrs
12/19/2020 Required Renewal Laws and Rules 3Hrs
12/17/2020 Required Renewal Medical Errors 2 Hrs
12/17/2020 Required Renewal Medical Errors 2 Hrs
12/09/2020 Required Renewal Laws and Rules 3Hrs
11/03/2020 Sexual Betrayal: Helping Couples Survive
10/09/2020 Surviving or Thriving? Strategies to Build a Smart Private Practice During the Pandemic
06/26/2020 Fearless Love: Relationship Sanity During Crazy Times
06/05/2020 Telehealth for Counselors: Zooming Into a New Era
05/22/2020 Close Up: COVID-19 Through the Lens of Inpatient Psychiatry
02/14/2020 Never Enough: Homeostasis, Marijuana and Opiate Addiction
01/24/2020 A Unified Partnership: Attorneys & Mental Health Counselors
12/14/2019 Soul Tending: Healing the Wounded Healer
12/13/2019 From PTSD to PTG: Psychological Resilience after Community Crisis
11/22/2019 Accurate Diagnosis: Tools for Effective Clinical Mental Health and Substance Abuse Evaluation
10/25/2019 Sex, Drugs & Rock-Solid Recovery: Regaining Intimacy
09/13/2019 Saving Lives: Getting Loved Ones into Treatment Using the Marchman Act
06/07/2019 Half Day Qualified Supervisor Refresher Training June 7th, 9 to 1
06/06/2019 Two Day Qualified Supervisor Training June 6 & 7th , 9 to 3 both days
05/31/2019 More than Addiction: Comprehensive Approaches to Co-Occurring Disorders
05/03/2019 ICISF Group Crisis Certification
04/19/2019 Eating Disorders Don't Discriminate: Screening for Signs and Symptoms
03/15/2019 Marijuana: Weeding Out Fact From Fiction
02/15/2019 Love Wins: Trauma, The Nervous System and Recovery
02/02/2019 Trained Crisis Responder Certification Course
01/04/2019 Communal Trauma: A Journey of Hope (Free CE Workshop)
01/01/2019 Ethics, Medical Errors, Renewal Laws & Rules: 8 Hour Friday Course
11/16/2018 Starry Nights: Non-suicidal Self-injury
10/12/2018 No Time to Lose: Accelerating Trauma Resolution
09/14/2018 On Becoming A Master Therapist: Personal and Professional Journeys
08/24/2018 Using Emotions in Therapy: Gottman, Ekman, Norcross and Napier
05/18/2018 Borderlines Part 2: Treating Personality Disorders
04/12/2018 Affluenza: Family Pathology of Excessive Wealth
03/16/2018 Radical Self Care: Mindfulness and Making Money in Therapy
02/16/2018 Intimacy Interrupted: How Sex and Other Addictions Destroy Relationships
01/26/2018 Marketing Strategies for Private Practice Owners (Special Engagement)
01/19/2018 Lifting the Fog: Integrating Bio/Neurofeedback into Dual Diagnosis Treatment
12/15/2017 The Body Keeps Score: Healing Trauma from Linehan to Van der Kolk
11/17/2017 Teens, Sex and Social Media
10/13/2017 Build Your 6 Figure Dream Private Practice
06/09/2017 Complicated Pain: Breaking the Destructive Opioid Spiral
04/21/2017 Treating the "Un-treatable": Borderline Personalities and Getting Results
02/10/2017 Failure to Launch: Issues and Strategies for Troubled Young Adults
01/06/2017 Medical Errors, Ethics, Domestic Violence
11/18/2016 Treating Complex Co-Occurring Disorders: A Team Approach

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