Category Archives for Counseling

Gender Identity and Mental Illness

“What matters most is not ‘what’ you are, but ‘who’ you are.” 
― DaShanne Stokes

What is Gender Dysphoria? Gender Identity and Mental Illness

The discrepancy of a person’s body and their internal sense of gender is not a mental illness. However, the mental illnesses that coincide a person’s struggle with gender identity should be addressed. There is a strong correlation between gender identity and mental illness. The term gender dysphoria describes the thoughts and feelings that one’s gender does not match their biology. “Dysphoria” is defined as a state of dissatisfaction and worry. Both the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) have removed the term “gender identity disorder” from their manuals. This created a widespread acceptance of those who struggle with gender dysphoria. These individuals are finally able to receive medical treatment without being classified as having a mental disorder. These emotions can cause severe anxiety, depression, and discomfort that can affect your normal life. Many who struggle with gender dysphoria have difficulties in social gatherings and attending work or school. Keep in mind that gender dysphoria is not the same as being homosexual – the gender that you feel you identify with has nothing to do with your sexual orientation. 

Signs and Symptoms of Gender Dysphoria

Children with gender dysphoria will persistently express that they are a girl if they have the physical traits of a boy, or say they are a boy if they have the physical traits of a girl. They also tend to prefer friends of the same gender in which they identify themselves. They will prefer toys, clothing, and games associated with their identified gender as well. Puberty is a difficult time for adolescents with gender dysphoria. During this progression, they may feel embarrassed, confused, and uncomfortable about the physical changes that happen to their body. Teenagers and young adults may start to become more certain that their true identity does not match their physical body. They may develop fears related to showering, changing their clothes, or engaging in sexual relationships.

Treatment of Gender Dysphoria

An estimated 71% of those who struggle with gender dysphoria will experience a mental illness at some point in their lifetime. The possibility of mood, anxiety, eating disorders are likely to develop. Other disorders include depression, schizophrenia, and suicidal thoughts. The treatment process is not focused on changing the thoughts or ideas the individual has about their gender – treatment is recommended to alleviate any concerns or disappointment one may have about these ideas. In order to lessen the symptoms, talking with a psychologist can be helpful. Other treatment methods include presenting yourself as the gender you feel you identify, possibly dressing a certain way and/or going by a different name to feel more accepted.

In order to contain changes that occur during puberty, an individual during this stage may seek the help of puberty blockers. However, this could be a potentially life-changing decision that a person of a young age may not be able to make themselves. Those at this age should discuss the risks and benefits from a medical professional. As they grow older, the option of sex-reassignment surgery may come to mind. This will help the individual feel more comfortable in their body as their desired gender, if they choose to do so.

The Importance of Acceptance

It is important to understand that those with gender dysphoria did not chose to have these thoughts and feelings. When these ideas begin as a child and progress through puberty and adulthood, they are likely to always feel this way. If your child begins to express these symptoms, doctors recommend to let them be who they are and accept them. If they feel ashamed or embarrassed, comfort them and recommend psychotherapy. Social support as well as professional support can help both children and adults with understanding that these symptoms are normal. Referring to the individual by their preferred name and pronoun will help them feel more comfortable and accepted and this is something that society has still not come to terms with realizing. A person who is living a life feeling inauthentic and unreal is more susceptible to mental illness.

How Can We Help?

If you are struggling with gender dysphoria and the mental illnesses associated with it, we are here to help you. With the proper mental health advice, we can alleviate any symptoms and uncertainty you are feeling. We can provide mental health counseling for different types of illnesses right here in our office. Please contact our office at (412)-532-1249 to schedule according to your availability and preferred location.

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premier therapy & coaching centers located in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again. Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, medical marijuana assisted treatment and relationship counseling.

Gender Differences with Trauma

What is Trauma? Gender Differences with Trauma

Approximately 50% of all individuals will experience some type of traumatic event in their lifetime. Several variations of traumatic events can develop and influence mental health disorders in men and women. They often co-exist with other disorders such as depression, anxiety, and alcohol/substance abuse disorders. They can even express themselves in different ways between genders. Trauma is defined as damage to the mind that is created by a stressful event. The major types of trauma include:

Sexual assault – unwanted and involuntary sexual behavior towards another individual; forcing or coercing someone else to engage in an act against their will in a non-consensual setting (rape, groping, forced kissing, or any other form of harassment in a sexual context)

Child Maltreatment 

  • neglect – failure to provide a child with adequate food, clothing, shelter, medical care, mental health care, education, supervision, and/or exposing a child to dangerous situations
  • physical abuse – causing or attempting to cause physical injury to a child (punching, kicking, beating, burning, etc.)
  • sexual abuse – sexual behaviors that take place between a child and adult, or forcibly between two children by the pressure of an adult
  • emotional abuse – acts against a child that could cause conduct, cognitive, affective, or other mental disturbances such as verbal abuse, emotional abuse, and/or excessive demands on a child’s behavior that may eventually lead to negative self-image

Domestic violence – the act of or the threat of physical, sexual, and/or emotional violence between adults in an intimate relationship

War related trauma – exposure to war, political violence, terrorism, combat related trauma (military personnel engaged in warfare who were exposed to deaths and threats to life)

School/community violence – personal conflicts between people who are not family (robbery, shootings, rape, etc.)

Medical trauma – caused by invasive medical procedures or frightening treatments that cause pain, injury, or illness

Traumatic loss – sudden, unexpected grief following the death of a loved one

Natural disasters – tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes, etc. that causes extreme damage to the extent that local, state, or federal agencies and disaster relief agencies are contacted

Everyone can respond to trauma in different ways, and there is no right or wrong way to feel after being exposed to trauma. These are a few of the most common symptoms that are seen in individuals after a traumatic event:

Emotional/psychological symptoms: shock, denial, disbelief, confusion, difficulty concentrating, anger, anxiety, guilt, withdrawing from others, feeling sad or hopeless, isolation

Physical symptoms: insomnia or nightmares, fatigue, being easily startled, racing heartbeat, agitation, aches and pains, muscle tension

 

Women with Trauma Gender Differences with Trauma

Women are twice as likely to experience longer traumatic symptoms, develop post-traumatic stress disorder, and express more sensitivity to ideations that remind them of the traumatic event. Why could this be? Just like with other health disturbances, researchers believe it could be due to the idea that women tend to seek help, report symptoms, and be more involved in their healthcare than men. After a fearful or worrisome event, it is normal to feel anxious and afraid for a while, but these feelings typically fade within a few weeks. For some women, they continue to feel anxious about the event for months to years after. The thoughts can become crippling and interfere with completing daily activities. Women who have experienced trauma, such as military combat are more likely than men to develop post-traumatic stress disorder. This is characterized by the reliving of a traumatic event through flashbacks, nightmares, anxiety, and/or other uncontrollable thoughts. They become more easily startled, have trouble feeling emotions or report feeling “numb,” avoid things that remind them of the trauma, or feel depressed and anxious more than usual.

 

Men with TraumaGender Differences with Trauma

Even though trauma is more likely to affect women, the symptoms that men experience should not be downplayed. Females may experience more sexual abuse while males tend to experience physical abuse. Trauma is more likely to make women depressed or anxious while it makes men more aggressive. This could correlate with the theory that men sometimes do not properly express their feelings in a healthy manner. Unfortunately, our society has created unwritten “Man Rules” that men feel they must live by. “Don’t be weak, don’t ask for help, don’t cry, don’t show emotion, and be brave” are what males are told from a young age. This idea of suppressing emotions when it comes to trauma is so unhealthy! It’s not easy at first, but facing the trauma and inner pain associated with it is the key to a healthy treatment plan. Finding someone you can trust, whether it be a family member, close friend, loved one, or therapist can make the discussion tremendously easier.

 

Trauma Treatment

The most effective treatment for a traumatic event is psychotherapy or “talk therapy.” Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a form of talk therapy that helps an individual recognize their thought patterns and advises them to create more positive thoughts. In the case of treating trauma, the individual and therapist would discuss negative beliefs about the trauma and how to avoid the idea of traumatic events happening again. Exposure therapy is another form of therapy that can be used with CBT for individuals experiencing trauma. With exposure therapy, the person is exposed to the event that causes them anxiety or worry and is taught ways to avoid letting the exposure become too overwhelming by “re-entering” the setting. These treatment methods can help the individual gain control of their feelings about trauma while creating a plan to stay distracted and maintain healthier thoughts.

 

How Can We Help?

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms it is important to get help. With the proper mental health advice, symptoms of trauma can be treated and we can help you get your health on track. We can provide mental health counseling for different types of trauma right here in our office. We can also provide PTSD Assessments for Medical Marijuana. Please contact our office at (412)-532-1249 to schedule according to your availability and preferred location. 

 

 

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premier therapy & coaching centers located in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again. Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, medical marijuana assisted treatment and relationship counseling.

 

Anxiety Symptoms and Treatments

Many individuals use the term anxiety to refer to a great deal of worry. But what does anxiety really mean? And what does anxiety look like? Awareness of anxiety symptoms and treatments can increase the likelihood of getting help and relieving any stress you may be feeling.

 

What is Anxiety?

Anxiety means an excessive worry or anxiousness that lasts for more than six months. The fear and worriedness manifest themselves in various extreme forms. These forms could look like physical and emotional ailments or psychological unrest. The toll that anxiety takes on an individual is very severe. For many individuals, it may not seem clear or evident that he or she is experiencing an anxiety disorder due to the lack of knowledge and information about its manifestation (anxiety.org).

 

Research suggests that women are more likely to develop an anxiety disorder in their lifetime than men (McLean, 2011, pp. 1). Gender differences and anxiety has shown that the manifestation of anxiety in both women and men could be presented in a similar fashion. However, research suggests that the main difference is “the observed differences between men and women are somewhat influenced by gender-related differences in the conceptualization and reporting of symptoms” (McLean, 2011, pp. 11).  

 

Common Anxiety SymptomsAnxiety Symptoms and Treatments

Anxiety’s most common psychological symptoms are: excessive worriedness, nervousness, irritation, racing thoughts, and a sense of panic. On the other hand, anxiety could take a much more physiological form in certain individuals. These common symptoms are: increased heartbeat, difficulty sleeping or remaining asleep, loss of appetite, tense muscles, and sweating. “These shared physiological states suggest a shared underlying biology and that anxiety maybe a whole-body condition” (Jovanovic, et al., 2018).

 

Treatment for anxiety could include various options. When combined, evidence-based therapy (EBT), cotemporary and alternative therapies have been shown effectiveness in the treatment of anxiety. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is an example of one type of EBT. “It teaches people different ways of thinking, behaving, and reacting to anxiety-producing and fearful objects and situations. CBT can also help people learn and practice social skills, which is vital for treating social anxiety disorder.” Typically, some therapies are combined to increase their effectiveness in treating anxiety. CBT and exposure therapy have been utilized quite a bit together to treat social anxiety disorder (SAD) (NIMH, 2018).

 

Another form of treatment for anxiety disorders that has been researched intensively is the use of medical marijuana. The research that has been complied thus far suggests that medical marijuana is capable of reducing anxiety, relaxing muscle tension, and stimulating appetite (Lava, 2018). Pennsylvania is one of the 33 states that has legalized the medical use of marijuana, “short-term use of medical marijuana with low THC and high CBD content has been shown to be most effective in treatment of anxiety disorders” (Sasko, 2019).  

 

How Can We Help? Anxiety Symptoms and Treatments

Rahmah Albugani is a doctorate intern who is conducting evaluations and ongoing counseling here at Makin Wellness. She is a nationally certified counselor with experience in setting goals for clients that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time manageable. If you are interested in mental health counseling for anxiety, please contact our office at (412)-532-1249 to schedule with Rahmah!

 

 

References:

Jovanovic, T., Lott, A. P., Michopoulos, V., Stevens, J., Rooij, S. van, Keller, J. M., … Sierra Carter. (2018). What Is Anxiety & How to Treat It – Anxiety Definition. Retrieved from https://www.anxiety.org/what-is-anxiety#anxiety-and-physical-health

 

Lava, N. (2018). Medical Marijuana FAQ. Retrieved from https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/medical-marijuana-faq

 

McLean, C. P., Asnaani, A., Litz, B. T., & Hofmann, S. G. (2011). Gender differences in anxiety disorders: prevalence, course of illness, comorbidity and burden of illness. Journal of psychiatric research45(8), 1027–1035. Doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2011.03.006

 

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). (2018). Anxiety Disorders. Retrieved from https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/anxiety-disorders/index.shtml#part_145353

 

Sasko, C. (2019). People with Anxiety Disorders Can Soon Get Pa. Medical Marijuana Cards. Retrieved from https://www.phillymag.com/news/2019/07/12/anxiety-medical-marijuana-pennsylvania/

 

 

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premier therapy & coaching centers located in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again. Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, medical marijuana assisted treatment and relationship counseling.

 

Rahmah Albugani Makin Wellness

Nutritional Intervention for Anxiety & Depression

We’ve all likely heard the term “brain food.” Likewise, when we think of mental health we may think of the mind, or certain brain chemicals. Growing research in the field of nutritional psychiatry explores nutritional interventions to relieve mental illness, specifically anxiety and depression. Did you know simply drinking a glass of water can improve brain function??

Adults and children alike are affected by mental illness, with anxiety and depression being the most common. In our ever hurried world, fast food may provide convenience, yet takes its toll on both mental and physical health.

Modifying lifestyle and diet has shown to be a preventative measure in mood disorders. Nutritional interventions encouraging a balanced, nutrient-dense, whole foods diet, helps prevent and alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression. The Society for Nutritional Psychiatry Research brings together practitioners and scientists interested in various nutritional research, linking the effects of nutrition on mental health. Dozens of research on the following nutritional recommendations have shown to have a positive effect on anxiety and depression: nutritional intervention

  • Whole foods (fruits and vegetables): Increasing fruit and vegetable consumption has been associated with lowered depression and anxiety. A diet high in a variety of raw fruits and vegetables provides vitamins and minerals necessary for optimal physical and emotional well-being.
  • Probiotics: Probitiocs are the beneficial bacteria in the gut, providing better nutrient absorption, and have been connected to mental wellbeing. Probiotics can be found in fermented foods, beverages, or supplements.
  • Omega 3 fatty acids: Omega 3’s are essential to brain function and development. Low levels may contribute to brain deficiencies and accelerate aging. Omega 3 fish oil has shown to positively impact mental clarity, memory, and depression. Salmon, sardines, and nuts and seeds like flaxseeds and walnuts are high in Omega 3’s.
  • Water: Water is essential to brain function and mood, as it flushes out toxins, carries nutrients to cells, acts as a lubricant to the body, and prevents constipation. Even if you’re mildly dehydrated, you may feel tired, having impaired concentration.

Holistic nutrition and therapy is an approach that looks at the root cause of illness, offering a natural approach to dis-ease. This includes considering a variety of factors affecting physical and mental health, such as nutrient deficiencies, lack of exercise, stress, and thyroid issues. A holistic approach works to improve immune function, digestion, and brain function, with an understanding that all body systems are interrelated. Makin Wellness is happy in providing nutritional intervention and other holistic treatment options. nutritional intervention

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premier therapy & coaching centers located in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again.  Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, medical marijuana assisted treatment and relationship counseling.

Laura Stewart Makin Wellness Nutrition Pittsburgh

Laura Stewart, B.A., CHN – Certified Holistic Nutritionist

Mental Health Services in Pittsburgh, PA – Counselors, Therapists & Life Coaches

Anxiety, depression ,stress and relational issues are all things that can complicate our lives . One of the most difficult things is finding someone who you can trust and count on. It can be tricky finding out who you can trust and who you can’t. Family, friends and loved ones can be supportive while you are having a hard time, but so many people face challenges that require more assistance than they could offer.Mental health Services in Pittsburgh
Makin Wellness mental health services can be your tool in your mental well being. We offer premier mental health counseling and coaching in our Downtown Pittsburgh, Downtown New Kensington and virtual offices.Mental health Services in Pittsburgh

Life CoachingMental health Services in Pittsburgh

The Makin Wellness Pittsburgh Coaching program is created to elevate your mood. The sessions you spend with your coach can be fun, uplifting and an experience that most of our clients say they look forward to!  Interpersonal growth is not something that is done best on your own; having a life coach  can boost your growth much faster. All of our coaches are licensed professional counselors as well, so when you do go through a hard time, you will have someone to help you process through it. Regardless of what you are are looking for, Makin Wellness can assist you. Every client is unique, so our coaching is individualized to best suit what your needs are.

Counseling and Therapy

Makin Wellness Counseling Associates can also help you realize your  habits in life, negative  relationships and challenges. Our counselors are trained to help you see what you have been struggling to acknowledge. If you also struggle with mental health or addiction issues, we are able to accurately diagnose you and collaborate on a treatment plan.Mental health Services in Pittsburgh

Your Makin Wellness Pittsburgh counselor may also help you identify your skills and talents, develop realistic and honest goals, create action steps, and measure progress. When you have been trying to make a change in your life, simply having someone to process your thoughts and emotions with, can make a huge difference.Mental health Services in Pittsburgh

Here’s a few examples of how Makin Wellness Pittsburgh & Makin Wellness New Kensington can make a difference in your life…

Anxiety & Depression

The majority of people don’t fully grasp what it is to live with a debilitating mental health issues like anxiety or depression. Doing mundane tasks like getting out of bed or getting ready in the morning seem like monumental tasks. Feeling trapped in your own negative thoughts can make you feel alone, out of control or even hopeless. The good news is that there is hope .Mental health Services in Pittsburgh

At Makin Wellness Pittsburgh & Makin Wellness New Kensington, truly understand how severe the symptoms of depression and anxiety are. We get how these disorders can wreak havoc on your success, career, relationships, family and basic functioning. Our licensed professional counselors and clinical team are ready to help you. We have decades of experience in treating depression and anxiety. Please know that these conditions are treatable. Give us a call today and set up an initial session with one of our renowned clinicians !

Stress ManagementMental health Services in Pittsburgh

We are sure you have heard how the only consistent thing in life is change. No matter what your background is, you have previously or currently experienced difficulties along your life journey. Regardless of your field of work, the common thing all humans share is stress. If you are overly stressed out, your quality of life and health will decline. Many topics addressed in stress management counseling are career choices, relationship tensions, money worries and / or self doubt. Whether you are looking to make a huge life change or learn effective ways of managing your stress, our professional counselors are trained to help you become less stressed out and more happy.

The Pros Life Coaching, Counseling, and Therapy

It doesn’t matter how complicated or simplistic the challenges in your life are; our staff are ready to provide you with emotional healing and support. We are able to do this by helping you find out what your priorities and goals are. Our mental health counselors can help you to :

  • Learn your priorities
  • Figure out how to manage your priorities
  • Implement strategies and effective coping skills
  • Eliminate obstacles and obstacles in your way
  • Provide emotional support

Scheduling an Appointment at Makin Wellness Pittsburgh or New Kensington

Now that you are ready to meet with a mental health professional, consider reaching out to Makin Wellness Pittsburgh or Makin Wellness New Kensington . Our  counselors, coaches, and therapists at Makin Wellness Pittsburgh know that it can be hard to ask for help. All you need to do is give us a ring and we are more than happy to help you start on your healing journey. We have appointments available for new clients within 48 hours.Mental health Services in Pittsburgh

Call Makin Wellness  today at (412)-532-1249.  Let’s heal & become happy again.

 

#healinghappenshere Mental health Services in Pittsburgh

Addiction Counseling – Therapists and Counselors in Pittsburgh, PA

Who all is impacted by addiction?

People who are addicted to substances or alcohol often don’t think they have a problem. It can be so challenging to honestly recognize and admit all of the negative consequences that have resulted because of their ongoing using. They might not be at the point where they are sick , totally out of control to exhausted yet; this is why it can be hard to seek out addiction counseling. Maybe a loved one colleague or friend has noticed that their their buddy is struggling. It can so overwhelming and flat out upsetting and shameful to take an honest look at what has happened in their life.

 

Is it really possible to be treated for addiction?

We hear so many times about people wondering if it is really true that addiction can be treated. The great news is that it absolutely can. There are countless different types of lightens, styles and types of effective treatment that cane implemented.  At Makin Wellness, we offer highly individualized treatment to best fit our client’s needs.  Lots of people consider therapy to be an important part of their sobriety and find it to extremely beneficial. Combining therapy with medication assisted treatment or medical cannabis* may also be extremely effective at reducing cravings. It doesn’t matter if you used drugs for a couple months or decades; counseling helps your better understand addiction, consequences, triggers and a can help to create a concrete relapse prevention plan in order to help you stay sober. Unlike popular belief, you don’t need to be at your worst in order to start therapy for addiction. It is possible to start healing … today.Addiction Counseling Pittsburgh

What is addiction counseling and treatment like?

Addiction can be treated with counseling alone or with counseling and medication… only taking medication or medical cannabis is not enough to keep someone sober, although it does help reduce cravings. Once you are a place where you don’t have any more substances in your body, addiction counseling assists you with learning new ways of living , coping and healing from past wounds.

Where can I become clean?

Makin Wellness in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington can help you become clean. We firmly believe that evidence based and holistic therapy can help you live a happier , healthier and sober life. There are many different treatment and therapy choices for people struggling with addiction, so we custom tailor our treatment to best suit your needs and what you want from therapy. We have experienced and caring addiction therapists that will help you understand addiction, learn how to cope and progress in recovery.Addiction Counseling Pittsburgh
At Makin Wellness Addiction Counseling of Pittsburgh, we don’t think you should have to wait before you start. We offer a luxurious , safe and nurturing environment where you can work on improving yourself and get the support you need. We honor initial appointments within 48 hours or even less sometimes. Don’t like addiction steal your happiness ; schedule your session today here.Addiction Counseling Pittsburgh

If you are looking for relief , please schedule a session today  to get connected with Pittsburgh’s best therapists!Therapy Business Owners

About Makin Wellness: 

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pennsylvania’s premier therapy and coaching centers located in Downtown , Pittsburgh and New Kensington, PA. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again. Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction , trauma , medical marijuana and relationship counseling .Addiction Counseling Pittsburgh

 


Anxiety & Medical Marijuana

“Our anxiety does not come from thinking about the future, but from wanting to control it.” – Kahlil Gibran

As human beings, it is natural to feel anxious when leaving our comfort zones. Pushing through our anxiety though, is what helps us to grow as individuals. Finding effective tools to manage anxiety, including preventative measures, is key to reaching our full potentials. When worry seems to take over day to day living, this may be a sign of an anxiety disorder. Read more about anxiety disorders here. While prescriptions medications are often used to treat anxiety disorders, they do not come without side effects. Holistic therapy and other natural treatment options are a safe alternative to prescription medications. anxiety

Health secretary Rachel Levine approved Turetts and anxiety as qualifying conditions for medical marijuana as of July 20th. Included anxiety conditions are generalized anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), separation anxiety, social anxiety, agoraphobia, and other phobias.

Medical marijuana is not recommended to treat children, adolescents, or pregnant women with anxiety disorders due to brain and fetus development. Long-term overuse of medical marijuana can cause issues with cognition and memory loss, and the risk of psychological dependency. For best results, it is recommended to incorporate traditional or alternative therapies, and lifestyle changes during medical marijuana treatment. anxiety

Research has shown positive results with medical marijuana being used to decrease and manage anxiety, since the body’s endocannabinoid system appears to play an important role in response to stress and anxiety.

A study conducted by Washington State University showed a decrease in stress, anxiety, and depression with the use of medical marijuana. Both men and women reported a decrease in all three symptoms. Women reported higher reduction in anxiety.

According to the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute, THC, the main active ingredient of cannabis, “appears to decrease anxiety at lower doses an increase anxiety at higher doses.” Individual responses differ and there are a variety of factors to take into consideration when treating anxiety with medical marijuana. THC in combination with CBD oil can enhance benefits and reduce unwanted effects, including psychoactive affects of THC. The best approach is to start at a low dose, and monitor your bodies response. anxiety

Talking with your physician and a trained therapist can provide the needed support when deciding the right treatment for you. Makin Wellness is happy in supporting you through a natural, holistic approach to wellness, including cognitive behavioral therapy, nutritional counseling, aromatherapy, and other natural treatment options. Contact us today for a free 15-minute consultation!

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premier therapy & coaching centers located in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again.  Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, medical marijuana assisted treatment and relationship counseling.

 

Summer Wellness ~ Walking into Wellness

“All truly great thoughts are conceived by walking.” – Friedrich Nietzsche walking

Imagine yourself stepping outside and literally walking into wellness, with a clear mind, less stress, and an overall feeling of well-being. Fresh air and nature provides a calming effect, while daily walking has shown to be a safe, gentle exercise to lose weight, clear the mind, among many other physical and mental benefits.

If the gym is not your thing, don’t despair. Consistent walking in combination with healthy eating has shown to be highly effective for weight loss, and lower risk for things like heart disease and Type 2 diabetes. Walking 30 minutes per day 5 times a week has shown to lower cardiovascular disease due to improved blood circulation. And the American Diabetes Association noted the benefits of walking to lower blood sugar levels, and lower risk for diabetes. walking

Mental benefits of walking include reduced anxiety and depression. Walking provides increased blood flow to the brain, helping the brains nerve cells to grow and work more efficiently. With improved mood and a calming effect to the nerves, this provides improved functioning of various body systems. A brisk walk produces some amount of sweat, releasing cortisol (the stress hormone). As stress is reduced, mental clarity and creativity is enhanced. Memory and concentration is also improved.

Physical benefits of walking include lower blood pressure, improved digestion, reduced joint pain and inflammation, and improved blood circulation. You can also lose weight by walking farther, faster, and more frequently. Interval walking has shown to be highly effective for weight loss. For example, walking for 15 minutes, and then increasing your speed for 2 m

inutes, helps raise the heartbeat and burn calories.

If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, try taking a short daily walk. Find a walking partner to help boost your mood and motivation. Learn more about walking for better health here!

Makin Wellness is happy to provide a personalized wellness plan including meal planning, a walking program, aromatherapy, and other natural techniques for overall wellness. Contact us today for your free 15-minute consultation!

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premier therapy & coaching centers located in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again.  Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, medical marijuana assisted treatment and relationship counseling.

 

Summer Wellness ~ Digital Detoxing

Technology may easily become addictive for young and old alike. Social media, games, texting, email, and endless apps to choose from can have you plugged in morning til’ night. Devices connect us to friends and family and can be quite entertaining, but we want to be sure we’re in control of our engagement, or it could end up controlling the majority of our time. If you feel your devices are taking over, a little digital detoxing may be in order. digital detoxing

A few studies have linked overuse of electronics to insomnia and poor sleep quality, since blue light supresses melatonin, which is a hormone produced by the body to promote sound sleep. Theres also evidence that children overly connected to devices are becoming less empathetic. b Lack of engagement in real life situations results in impatience, due to having instant gratification with the touch of a finger. Face to face conversation offers an exchange that can’t be replicated through technology.

Summer is the perfect opportunity to practice digital detoxing. Spending less time on devices helps reduce stress, promoting a more mindful approach by giving time and attention, and being present with those around you. A few simple ways to do this are – turning off notifications, keeping devices away from the dinner table (otherwise known as phone stacking), setting a timer when using your devices, and keeping devices turned off or out of the bedroom to ensure to optimize sleep. 

One study observed people who went on a digital detox. The observations made by neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers were quite encouraging. Participants had improved eye contact, and better posture, opening up their energy and engagement. Who doesn’t want positive energy?! Improved memory was also shown after being without electronic devices, since they could be more present and better able to store and process information. Another observation was participants had new perspective on life. Instead of wasting time on devices and using them as a crutch, they were able to think freely and evaluate their own life without distraction.

Why not try a digital detox this summer? It’s the perfect time of year to get outdoors and enjoy the warm weather, while spending time being present with friends and family. Perhaps you may find yourself happier, finding new perspective, and connecting with others face to face! digital detoxing

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premier therapy & coaching centers located in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again.  Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, medical marijuana assisted treatment and relationship counseling.

Laura Stewart, B.A., CHN

Summer 2019 Wellness Trends

Summer is a season full of energy, abundant activity, and of course, increased heat! In reaction to heat, the body may sweat to maintain normal body temperature. Staying hydrated and protecting yourself from too much sun exposure is necessary in preventing irritability, sunburn, or more serious conditions like heat exhaustion. summer

Whole foods like cucumber, celery, and pineapple help keep the body hydrated with their natural water content. Summer foods such as watermelon, tomatoes, bell peppers, and papaya help to naturally protect the skin from UV-rays. Celery juice is the latest trend to stay hydrated, improve liver function, reduce free radicals, and increase energy!

Nourishing the gut with a proper balance of protein, fiber, and carbohydrates is vital to immune health, weight, and disease prevention. Improving gut health is still a trend in 2019, and rightfully so. Gut health is essential to balancing hormones in charge of mood, hunger, sleep, and stress. Simple ways to boost gut health include cutting back on highly processed foods, eating nutrient dense whole foods, and prioritizing stress reducing techniques.

Eliminating inflammatory foods like gluten and dairy has also been a large trend in 2019. This comes as no surprise with inflammation being the root cause of many chronic conditions. Incorporating anti-inflammatory foods can help to reduce inflammation and reduce risk of disease. Popular foods like fresh ginger, turmeric, walnuts, spinach, and kale all help to reduce inflammation. Staying hydrated, reducing stress, and regular physical activity are others important ways to reduce symptoms of inflammation.

Camel milk is another wellness trend with its ability to improve cholesterol, lower blood sugar, and decrease insulin resistance. Camel’s milk has shown to be beneficial in reducing free-radicals and works as an anti-inflammatory.

IV drops are also gaining popularity in wellness routines. Nutrients are better absorbed as they’re delivered intravenously since they bypass the body’s digestive system. IV infusions aid in boosting immunity, improving digestion, muscle recovery, and enhancing your skin’s glow. Vitamins, minerals, and amino acids can quickly get into the bloodstream through IV at increased levels. This on-the-go treatment has been used by functional MD pioneer Frank Lipman for nearly 20 years, and is becoming more popular as a quick fix.

Being mindful our bodies needs is essential to wellness. No one else can tell you how you’re feeling. Being in tune with your body and listening to your intuition will help you to be more aware of your bodies unique needs. Mindful, or intuitive eating is simple eating when you’re hungry, and stopping when you’re full. This ensures you’re getting what you need, and avoids emotional eating. Mindful practices help promote sustainable wellness and longevity.

Summertime is the perfect season to detox and incorporate other natural approaches to wellness, helping your body function at its best. To receive support with a holistic approach to reach your summer wellness goals, contact us today at Makin Wellness to speak with our Holistic Nutritionist and receive a free consultation! summer

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premier therapy & coaching centers located in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again.  Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, medical marijuana assisted treatment and relationship counseling.

Laura Stewart, B.A., CHN

1 2 3 7