Current Overall Covid Risk – Douglas County NE

All scores/measures must be considered collectively. While [for example] an infection rate might be low, a high positive test rate would suggest that testing in Douglas County, Nebraska is limited and that most cases may go undetected. At these levels, it is hard to know how fast COVID is actually spreading, and there is risk of being surprised by a second wave of disease. When that is true, continued caution is warranted.

You can find out more about Covid Act Now here. 


From the CDC – Find community transmission levels and masking guidance by county.


 

How to Have a Successful Online Therapy Session

Preparation makes a big difference!

If you’ve ever had a friend drop in unexpectedly, perhaps you made the best of it. Maybe you had a variety of beverages at hand, and some delectable finger-food to arrange hastily on a tray. Or maybe all you had was bottled water and that box of Bugles that had been pushed to the back of the pantry sometime during the Obama Administration.

What’s my point?

If you are going to participate in online counseling services – that may include clinical hypnosis – a little preparation will go a long way towards you feeling comfortable and satisfied with the process.

Terry Moore - headset on!
Terry Moore

I have to admit something

I didn’t think, originally, that any of this would persist in the world as it clearly has. As I write this in late June 2020 [and review it in early ’22], I would have thought we’d all be going to concerts, restaurants, and the grocery store without a second thought. For me at this moment, going to the grocery store continues to feel like a small commando operation: planning, masks, a strategic movement through a socially distanced world where I still can’t find Clorox disinfecting wipes [okay, this is slightly easier now!]. It’s all just a little weird – like I’m an extra in some dystopian TV show.

But, this is where we are at. At this moment, states that re-opened beaches, bars, and other venues are reporting an explosion of Covid-19 cases. Places are re-closing. Hospitals are filling up again.

So

We have to take charge of what we can. We can stay informed, and act accordingly – for ourselves, our families, and for those we interact with.

I continue to conduct most of my work over telehealth services. With the Omicron variant in circulation, all of us [regardless of vaccination status] are vulnerable. We can talk over the prospect of coming into the office for future sessions – but I hope all of us will exercise caution and flexibility.  

We’ll monitor the situation, and act accordingly. It is helpful that the rules and regs we operate under have accommodated telehealth services. And, insurance carriers and Employee Assistance Programs are willing to reimburse providers for telehealth. Call your company directly with your questions – each company is different in how they handle these claims. Given what is happening in the world, I expect this to continue for the foreseeable future.

Here’s what you need for a great session

  • Time: session time plus about 15 minutes ahead of time to arrange the environment and to test your technology setup
  • Safe spot: this does vary from home to home! Some people can successfully sit in the family room at 1pm, and the only distraction will be a cat. Others will find a bedroom, a home office, or the computer desk in the basement to be better. What you want is quiet, and privacy. Minimize distractions where possible
  • Decent lighting. Most of us live in homes where the chairs are in front to the windows, and the chairs are facing ‘in’. But pointing your laptop/iPad/smartphone at yourself in that chair will give you no more than a shadowy silhouette. Not good for the therapist trying to monitor your emotions! So try several seating/lighting combos – until you get something viable.
  • You don’t need the latest flagship device from the coolest makers – but your device must be robust enough to handle 45 to 50 minutes of video data. Plug in to the charger, or charge in advance.
  • You need an Internet connection that you can count on: 3G, 4G, 5G, WiFi, or a plug-in from the router [my favorite!] If you Google the phrase “How do I test my WiFi signal” – you will earn a college degree before you get to the end of the page. Here’s a comprehensive guide to the topic. It’s worth it to figure this out! If your signal is weak or unstable, the audio stream will drop words, and the picture will pixelate or freeze. Not helpful!
  • If you want to make sure that you’re ready, you can review all the details here on the Zoom website. I’m almost exclusively using Zoom for Healthcare for sessions. I think it is stable, secure, and has a short learning curve. Chances are you’ve already been using it for work, socializing with friends, or your kids have used it for school. They’ll show you how!
  • In addition to being seen – you want to both hear and be heard. Dig out the headset you use for gaming. Plug in the earbuds that came with your phone [if it has a port – those are going away!]. Or, charge up the Bluetooth device you got two holiday seasons ago – the ones you thought you’d never use. Charge ’em up and make sure you are ‘paired’ with your device. Luckily, some devices have great speakers and microphones built right in – so if that works, we’ll go with it!

 

All the Ways We’ll Beat the Winter Blues This Season – The New York Times

When you live in Omaha, NE – or the surrounding area – dealing with the gloom of an overcast sky or the drama of dodging the potholes on the roadway are a part of life we all understand. And, mostly, we deal with it, knowing that milder weather, sunnier days, and repaired streets will all come our way in due time.

However, some of us suffer a lot more. Not exactly hibernation – but a withdrawal from life. A deeper sadness, a lack of energy, maybe even a sense of despondency that weighs heavily on us – and our relationships. The question, then: what to do?

The linked article will bring lots of ideas – I especially like the idea of bringing home a plant. Maybe that’s why, every year, area events like the Cathedral Flower Show and the Omaha Home and Garden Expo are so well-attended. Can’t make those? Lauritzen Garden or the Doorly Zoo will fill the gap nicely.

Need more help with depression? Please give me a call – let’s talk it over.

Source: All the Ways We’ll Beat the Winter Blues This Season – The New York Times 

Stress and GI Conditions

The normal stress of everyday life can aggravate certain GI conditions. And in a vicious cycle, worrying about or dwelling on severe pain, constipation, diarrhea and other GI symptoms can make the symptoms worse, which in turn increases the stress.

 

Read the full story from Science Daily

 

I have training in the use of hypnosis for the treatment of IBS. More information here. Please call or use my Contact Page for your questions.

Who Killed the 50 minute session? What Consumers Should Know about Changes to Psychotherapy Sessions in 2013

Unbeknownst to most mental health consumers, a change went into effect in January, 2013 that may have far-reaching ramifications for those receiving outpatient psychotherapy. For the first time in 15 years, changes were made to the coding system used to describe and bill for mental health treatment. This change has resulted in chaos for many mental health professionals who bill their patients’ insurance. Nationwide, many mental health providers have reported problems with filing and receiving timely reimbursement for claims filed under the new coding system.

Source: Who Killed the 50 minute session? What Consumers Should Know about Changes to Psychotherapy Sessions in 2013

Starting in April, 2017 – I’ll be adjusting my schedule. Session length will be 45 minutes. While this will require me to be more time-conscious with start/stop times – this will allow me to see more clients over a day at the office. More availability of late afternoon and evening appointments.

Update: Starting April 24th, 2017, I will be reverting to my original format! After just 2 weeks of the ’45 block session format’, I realized that it was unsustainable for me. I lost the kind of focus I need to do the work I want, got too concerned about staying on schedule, and found the transitions too abrupt from one client to the next. So, you can expect a 50 minute session that winds down in a more leisurely transition. The remaining 10 minutes will allow for jotting a session note, and other practical things.

Also of note: I change my overall schedule from time to time – so call the office to see if I have available time for you, or if you have other questions about my services. Thanks!

Questions? Give me a call – 402-334-1122

Hypnosis May Be Effective for Cancer Pain, IBS, Headaches

Help for Medical Issues

Brain imaging studies demonstrate that hypnosis influences cortical areas and neurophysiological processes that underlie pain and emotions.

Are you open to a new approach to feeling better?

Having a chronic health issue can be stressful in and of itself. However, over time, suffering and loss of function can be especially discouraging. Simultaneously, we are starting to become aware of the trouble that can derive from the long-term use of opioid pain medications. They don’t always help the way we want them to; the danger of addiction looms for even cautious users after a very short time.

Medications can help with the symptoms of IBS; this can be combined with dietary changes suggested by your physician. Yet, many find that the result obtained are disappointing. Advancements have been made, too, for those who are troubled with migraine headaches. Biofeedback, medications, and trigger identification [allergies] all make for better adjustment.

Options are great

All of these treatment options are great, but I often hear that people’s response to care can be incomplete, or that medications have side effects that are challenging to manage. Is it time to consider clinical hypnosis?

The link below will take you to an online post that summarizes recent research and clinical findings. After reading, talk it over with your healthcare professional. Questions? Give me a call. 402-334-1122

Source: Clinical Hypnosis May Be Effective for Cancer Pain, IBS, Headaches

Is Hypnotherapy More Than Hype?

Hypnotherapy might be more helpful than you think. Consumer Reports fills you in what you need to know and explains whether this therapy is more than hype.

Source: Is Hypnotherapy More Than Hype?

The Source link will take you to an article from Consumer Reports – it does a nice job of outlining some of the things that hypnosis research has shown to be effective uses of the technique. If you have questions after reading the article, please contact me.

Your job is killing you!

Danish workers have a single payer health system, so it’s easy to track how people use their benefits. This study appears to confirm the link between a rise in work-related stress and the negative impact on our health.

More work and pressure to perform beyond certain levels leads to an increase in depression, anxiety — and eventually, an increase in sick days taken by the overworked.

The takeaway? If you run a company, you risk harming the people you depend on to run your business and to keep your customers happy. If you are an employee, be thoughtful about how you respond to someone else’s appeal for you to work faster, or more intensely. Think carefully about the toll that overtime, or extra shifts, make on your overall well-being.

It may be better to take a pass on that.

For all the details of the Danish study, click the link below.

Source: The clearest proof yet that your job is killing you – The Washington Post