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News Items – September 9, 2021

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Bernie Seifert is a member:
Dementia, depression not ‘normal’ parts of aging
New Hampshire Union Leader
Symptoms of dementia and depression often overlap and can be confused for each other in older adults. Not only are they distinct conditions, they don’t happen to everyone, and both should be addressed. “Too many older adults don’t do anything about it when they feel sad or confused, and they don’t have to live that way,” said Bernie Seifert, LICSW, of the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Aging Resource Center. Depression can be reversed, and with early intervention, some symptoms of dementia may be reduced. The key is for older adults to know the signs of both and to discuss with their health care providers, and for their health care providers to be able to tell the difference.”

Tiffanie Hampton is a member:
VIF: Local help available for veterans affected by Afghanistan crisis
“A lot of times people don’t want to call the crisis line, because they don’t want — you know — ‘I’m not suicidal, I’m just really struggling with what’s going on in Afghanistan today,’ ” said Tiffanie Hampton, a licensed clinical social worker at the Vet Center. “They can always call that number. Just to talk to someone. If you just want to stop in and have a cup of coffee, visit with some other veterans, come to some of our groups — drop in any time.”

Lori Osachy is a member:
Faces of Aiden Fucci: A look at the teen murder suspect’s emotions since his arrest
The videos were taken during the search for 13-year-old Tristyn Bailey, hours before she was found stabbed to death on Mother’s Day. Fucci also snapped a photo with the caption, “Hey guys, Inbody seen Tristyn lately?” “It was very shocking,” said Lori Osachy, a licensed clinical social worker. “It was not matching the situation for sure, but sometimes that can be a sign of mental illness when someone doesn’t react in a normal way or the opposite way we would expect.” Two days later, Fucci appeared in court. The first appearance video shows a quieter version of Fucci, as he learns he is charged in connection to Bailey’s murder.

Katherine Glaser is a member:
Tampa Bay teens are depressed and anxious. Social media deserves blame.
Tampa Bay Times
You look anorexic. You need to lose ten pounds. You should kill yourself. Her teen patients see comments like these on social media all the time, said Katherine Glaser, a licensed clinical social worker at Thriveworks Counseling in Tampa. “People say things that they wouldn’t say in person because they get to hide behind a screen,” said Glaser, who treats teens and young adults.

Monica Faulkner is a member:
Navigating Texas’ new abortion law will be tricky for providers, experts say
Monica Faulkner is suing the state over new abortion restrictions that went into effect Wednesday. A social worker for 20 years, she told KXAN she’s concerned about how the new law could affect her when she helps victims of sexual assault. “The way I see it, someone had to stand up,” said Faulkner. The law prohibits abortions once medical professionals can detect fetal cardiac activity, usually around six weeks into a pregnancy. The law allows private citizens to sue anyone who “aids and abets” in an abortion, other than the patient. Damages could add up to $10,000.

Courtney Tracy is a member:
Mental Health Trends and Harmful Half-Truths
There are over 32 million “#mentalhealth” posts on Instagram. On TikTok- the tag has over 15 billion views. But not all of those are full of factual, medically sound information. A licensed clinical social worker and psychologist, Dr. Courtney Tracy said, “Mental health has become a trend.” Still, experts say this online mental health movement can benefit people who may have otherwise felt alone.

Allan Schwartz is a member:
Even in Atlanta’s mild winters, seniors are among the most vulnerable to feeling SAD
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
“Because the season is a festive time that is marked by family renewals, a deep sense of loss and mourning can be pervasive when a loved one is missing. … The ‘empty chair’ that was occupied by a wife, parent, other close family members and close and dear friends can often reawaken feelings of grief with renewed intensity,” Dr. Allan Schwartz, a licensed clinical social worker, wrote on the website

Columbus resident went through painful conversion therapy at local church
The Columbus Dispatch
Lawmakers, LGBTQ rights activists and mental health professionals in Ohio have been trying to ban conversion therapy for minors since at least 2015, said Danielle Smith, executive director of the National Association of Social Workers’ Ohio chapter. Like many other cities, Columbus banned the practice in 2017. Several professional associations such at the American Medical Association and the American Psychological Association also have condemned conversion therapy.


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