Posts Tagged ‘Ashburn Patch’

Ms. Kathleen Hwang of Sanders Corner Elementary School was fatally wounded in an accident last week. Dr. Michael Oberschneider, our director, wrote an article on her loss for the Ashburn Patch and Leesburg Patch to help parents in our community. You will find the piece at the Patch or by clicking on the link below.

Ms. Kathleen Hwang of Sanders Corner Elementary School

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Dr. Oberschneider is writing a monthly advice column for the Ashburn Patch and the Blue Ridge Leader and Loudoun Today. The Ashburn Patch is a wonderful on-line Website and resource for Ashburn events and news. The Blue Ridge Leader and Loudoun Today is Western Loudoun’s oldest newspaper, and is a real new gem for our community.  Ask Dr. Mike focuses on a host of topics and has been very well received by Loudoun County residents.  Dr. Oberschneider previously wrote his column for the Loudoun Easterner before it closed its doors in 2009, and he has written mental health pieces as a psychologist for others, including the Washington Post.  We invite you to read Dr. Oberschneider’s most recent pieces by visiting the links below.  



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  • Dr. Joseph Novello was nominated, “Top Doc,” in the Washingtonian Magazine and Virginia Living Magazine for his work as a psychiatrist with children and adults.  Dr. Novello was also nominated into the “Best Doctor’s in America” 2011-2012 database for psychiatry.
  • Dr. Michael Oberschneider appeared on Good Morning America as a mental health expert to discuss bullying and teen suicide.
  • Dr. Oberschneider published several articles on various topics in Loudoun County newspapers and was featured in the magazine, Northern Virginia, and on the Website, Ashburn Patch.
  • Dr. Albert Jerome was invited by the Discovery Network to appear as a treatment expert on an episode of the popular show, Hoarding: Buried Alive.  The episode was filmed in 2010 and will be shown on the Discovery Learning Channel in early 2011.
  • Dr. Novello, Dr. Imran Akram, Dr. Amy Gordon, Dr. Margaret Wong, Dr. Albert Jerome, Dr. Maggie Avedisian and Dr. Michael Oberschneider hosted a panel presentation and discussion on Bipolar Affective Disorder and Depression at the Potomac Club in Lansdowne.
  • Dr. Jay Lucker presented seminars for continuing education credit all over the U.S. on the topic of “Helping Children with Auditory Processing Disorders.”  He continues to present seminars on a monthly basis on this topic.  You can find out more by going to www.pesi.com and searching under LUCKER for upcoming seminars from the East Coast to the West Coast and from North to South.
  • Dr. Lucker was the invited keynote speaker and presented a full day seminar at the Canadian Speech-Language-Hearing Association 2010 convention.  He spoke on his specialty topic of Auditory Processing Disorders.
  • Dr. Lucker was an invited speaker and the keynote speaker at the FRUA 2010 Fall Conference in Philadelphia and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.  He spoke on the topic of Auditory Processing Disorders in Internationally Adopted Children.
  • Dr. Lucker was one of the invited speakers at the 2010 Annual Convention of the Maryland Speech-Language-Hearing Association.  He spoke on the topic of The Use of Sound Interventions and Auditory Training Programs for Children with Auditory Processing Disorders.
  • Dr. Lucker was one of the invited speakers presenting the closing seminar for all attendees at the K.S. & A. 2010 Summer Conference.  He spoke on the topic of Auditory Processing Disorders in Children with XY Chromosome Variations.
  • Dr. Lucker presented a webinar on Developing Listening Skills in Children with Cochlear Implants a number of times during the 2010 year.  He also presented a seminar on Developing Auditory Processing Skills in Children with XY Chromosome Variations as the Holiday Special Webinar this Christmas 2010.


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Published in the Ashburn Patch, December 23, 2010

By: Taghrid Barron

How to Beat the Holiday Blues

If you’re suffering from depression, grieving the loss of a loved one or coping with a recent divorce, the holidays can be anything but happy. People struggling with a loss are especially vulnerable to feelings of depression during the holidays, according to Dr. Michael Oberschneider, director of Ashburn Psychological Services and a clinical psychologist.

“These are the people that I worry about the most,” Oberschneider said. “They are most vulnerable around the holidays because of the nature of their situation … they want to reflect and remember. Nostalgia is a wonderful thing, but when you experience a loss, nostalgia can quickly become melancholia and take you to a very, sad place.”

Here are some of Dr. Oberschneider’s tips on how to cope, if you’re grieving a loss of some sort during the holidays:

  • Accept where you are in the grieving process
  • Don’t drink alcohol–it’s a depressant
  • Don’t spend a lot of time alone. Spend time with loved ones or friends. If you know you’re going to be off of work for a week, keep busy. Plan a trip to the store or a museum and have your social calendar filled with activities
  • Shift your mindset by volunteering to help someone else. “Get out of your own mindset or funk by volunteering. Caring for or giving to others is very rewarding and increases the likelihood of feeling good about yourself and feeling appreciated,” Oberschneider said.

There’s no shame in getting some extra support from a counselor if you need it, Oberschneider said. People have a lot of misconceptions about getting therapy. It isn’t just for people with mental health problems, and it doesn’t have to take years, he said. You can go to a therapist for four or five sessions to help you process your feelings and get some closure or get a little extra support during a particularly difficult time, he said.

“The majority of people that go to a counselor aren’t mentally ill,” he said. “They are fully or partially functional. There’s just some aspect of their life that hasn’t worked out well.”

If you develop these classic symptoms of depression, definitely seek help.

  • Sleeping too much
  • Lack of interest in enjoyable activities
  • Feeling most comfortable when you are dwelling on feelings of pain or a problem
  • Not sleeping well
  • Feeling restless or anxious
  • Feeling overwhelmed and not able to manage your time well
  • If friends and family notice a shift in your personality
  • If you can’t manage your behavior or thoughts

Here’s to a happy and mentally healthy holiday!

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Published in the Ashburn Patch, December 22, 2010

By: Taghrid Barron

Don’t Worry, Be Happy

Professional Advice on How to Cope with Stress During the Holidays

Organizing the office holiday party, going to four stores to track down the last item on your son’s list to Santa, trying to figure out how you can afford to get your kids the latest $300 gadget, baking several dozen cookies for your daughter’s school, and sending out 50 holiday cards in your spare time. Sound stressful?

Well, that’s what a lot of us have to cope with this time of year, and it can leave you feeling far from jolly. According to a 2006 study conducted by the American Psychological Association, 61% of respondents said they felt stress during the holidays.

Dr. Michael Oberschneider, director of Ashburn Psychological Services and a clinical psychologist said people have a difficult time during the holidays for several reasons. Conflicts between work and family responsibilities; financial stress; disruptions in eating, sleeping and exercise routines; and increased use of alcohol, all contribute to negative feelings.

“If you don’t take good care of yourself, all these factors play out as to how well someone gets through the holidays,” Dr. Oberschneider said.

So how can you put the joy back into your holidays? Here are some of Dr. Oberschneider’s tips:

  • Get enough sleep.
  • Continue to eat healthy and exercise.
  • Be realistic. Take on only what you can manage. Learn to say “No.” Tackle one activity after work, instead of several.
  • Minimize your financial stress by discussing your budget with your kids. Together, decide whether you will buy one expensive present or several smaller gifts.
  • At the first sign of stress, identify what’s making you anxious and come up with a game plan on how to confront it. Don’t let it build and become overwhelming.
  • Give to yourself. “Do something that puts you in a mindset that fosters calm,” Dr. Oberschneider said. Take a hot bath, drink a cup of hot tea, go out for a walk, listen to some music or leave the office on time.

Even kids, especially children with special needs, can feel anxious during the holidays. Children are twice as likely to suffer from stress during the holidays, probably because their parents are more stressed, Dr. Oberschneider explained. If you have a child with autism, ADD or other special needs, the holidays can be particularly difficult because these children need a lot of structure.

Here’s how to help kids, especially those with special needs, manage their anxiety when routines are disrupted during the holidays:

  • Be prepared. Have a schedule of activities and general expectations. Let the kids know what they are expected to do and how they are expected to behave.
  • Structure the day as much as possible. Continue normal routines and let them know what special activities are planned for the day.
  • Balance fun/playtime with downtime.
  • Model good behavior. Manage your stress calmly and model responsible and respectful problemsolving.
  • Model self care. Let your kids see you eating well, sleeping well and exercising.

Here’s hoping your holiday is a stress-free and joyful one!

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