Family, Friends, Neighbors and Co-Workers

The evidence is in and we are NOT doing a good job! Today is World Mental Health Day and according to Fortune, the statistics show that most adults struggling with mental health issues are not receiving the support they need.

Look, chances are good that you know someone who is struggling. A child with ADHD. A teen with an anxiety disorder. An adult dealing with addiction. A senior living with depression. Family and friends also feel the pain as they try to support someone they care about and help them find a way to a healthier and happier life.

There are services available. From traditional talk therapy to medications and many unique types of interventions as well. In our program, we are often part of the treatment team, working with children as young as four, teens, adults and yes, even seniors. We work one-on-one with the client and the horse they have chosen to help them on their journey. We address each clients specific issues while interacting with our equine partners. Our goals may be to increase focus or to develop good leadership skills. We may working on decreasing anxiety or on understanding that adults have information that kids need to be safe and successful. We may be rebuilding confidence or on decreasing impulsive behaviors. Whatever the goal, work with horses can be very powerful way to make things happen!

Please, if you or someone you know, are struggling, seek help. We are here for you. Call of email and we will set up a tour of the ranch. We will show you around, introduce you to our horses, learn more about what you are dealing with and share how we may be able to help.

Posted in Addiction, ADHD, Anxiety Disorders, Asperger's, Autism, Bipolar, Children's issues, Depression, Eating Disorders, FAS, Grief, Mental Health, OCD, ODD, Other challenges, PTSD, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Schizophrenia, Seniors Program, Sensory processing issues, Teens | Leave a comment

There Are Many Options For Dealing With Anxiety

Everyone is different. Some deal with setbacks and challenges, brushing it off and moving on. Other people need to rebound and still others may get stuck in a place of pain and fear. For some a good friend to talk to may be enough to get them back on track. A skilled therapist can help many, while some need a variety of interventions.

No one approach is right or wrong. It is just a question of what works for you. This NPR report shares a new study, published in the Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, that talks about how for some, a combination of medication and therapeutic interventions is the most effective way to address anxiety.

Nevada Equine Assisted Therapy can be a powerful part of any treatment plan. The challenging, though non-threatening interactions with our herd can help client’s realize that they can do things that may have seemed daunting to them in the past. The act of grooming a horse is very soothing, and as one client recently observed ‘I can think about how wonderful this feels when I am stressed at school’. For many clients just being able to be themselves, with no judgement – horses don’t care what you look like, how you dress or what your voice sounds like (among other things) – is a gift. We start on the ground, building understanding and confidence. Once up on the horse, clients learn that they can do so much more than they may have thought.

If you or someone you know is struggling with anxiety, or any other issue that limits the ability to fully enjoy life, seek help. There are many resources out there. If you are interested in learning more about how Equine Assisted Therapy can help, call or email us. We will be happy to answer your questions and to set up a time for you to visit the ranch. We will show you around, introduce our wonderful horses, learn more about what you are dealing with and share how we may be able to help.

Posted in Addiction, Anxiety Disorders, Asperger's, Children's issues, Depression, Grief, Mental Health, OCD, PTSD, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Seniors Program, Teens | Leave a comment

How Do We Deal With These Troubling Times?

On a good day life has its challenges. We run late, we end up in traffic, we forget to do something we needed to, we get home to discover that the dog chewed up a shoe, we can’t get excited about anything for dinner and don’t get to bed as early as we like. That’s probably a typical day for many of us. But then you add in things like devastating natural disasters or horrific crimes and it is easy to understand how we can become immobilized by sadness, fear and even depression.

During difficult times it is especially important that we take care of ourselves. This list of 9 things that you need to keep in mind may help. Take time for yourself, even if it is only a few quiet moments to gather yourself together and prepare for the day.

Nevada Equine Assisted Therapy is scheduling special pro bono sessions for those in the area who have been affected by this terrible tragedy that occurred in Las Vegas on Sunday night. You can email us at neatinfo@yahoo.com for more details…

Posted in Addiction, Anxiety Disorders, Children's issues, Depression, Grief, Mental Health, PTSD, Seniors Program, Teens | Leave a comment

What We Know About Autism

In this day and age, I would guess that most people have heard of autism and have at least a vague understanding of what this neurological condition is all about. For some people it will be simply be a ‘oh yeah, I’ve heard of it,’ while for many it will be all about a life of personal experience. Through the years there has been incredible debate about what causes autism and it seems that new information becomes available all the time.

In this TIME Health piece, the results of a recent study, published in the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) are presented. It is interesting because they went back and used data from a previous study, but considered the information from a new perspective. The finding show a shift towards a great ‘environmental’ influence, but also emphasizes that genetics still plays the largest role.

No matter the causes, there is very strong evidence that the earlier and more intensive the interventions provided, the greater chances a child has to be able to integrate and function well in mainstream populations. There are many very, very good interventions available and equine assisted therapy is among them.

From stimulating language centers of the brain through mounted work, to helping children work through sensory issues, equine assisted therapy offers many benefits for those on the autism spectrum. Nevada Equine Assisted Therapy works with children as young as 4, teens and even adults, on the autism spectrum. Working one-on-one with a Qualified Mental Health Associate (QMHA) and a horse the client chosen, we focus on each clients individual goals and objectives. The client’s

specific situation, from developing appropriate self-soothing techniques to improving social awareness, is the focus of the work we do in partnership with our horses.

If you know someone with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) we are here to help. We are happy to make an appointment for you to come and visit us. We will show you around the ranch, introduce you to our wonderful horses, learn more about what your dealing and share how we might be able to help. Call or email today to schedule a visit.

Posted in Asperger's, Autism, Children's issues, Teens | Leave a comment

True and False – ADHD Findings

In this day and age, most of us have heard of someone with ADHD. It may be our child or grandchild, a child in our classroom or perhaps the next door neighbor or, even someone we work with. Or maybe it’s us. But not everything you have heard is true and new information is changing the way we view and treat those who are struggling with ADHD.

Int this USNews piece, several specialists share their insights on the myths surrounding ADHD, including that ‘It’s A Curse’ and that ‘You Outgrow ADHD’.

Of course there are many interventions that can be incredibly helpful for children, teens and adults living with ADHD and work with horses is one of them!  From increasing focus to decreasing impulsive behaviors, to improving boundaries to building self-confidence, horse offer many, many opportunities to help people find a path to a healthier and happier life.

If you, or someone you know, is struggling with ADHD, seek help. We are here to be a part of your team! Call or email and we can schedule a visit. We will show you around, introduce our wonderful horses, learn more about what you are dealing with and share how we may be able to help. Take the first step today and get in touch with us.

Posted in ADHD, Children's issues, Mental Health, Teens | Leave a comment

Horses Helping People Heal

We KNOW that work with horses can help people heal, because we SEE IT every day with the clients we work with, but it is so encouraging to hear about other programs that are partnering with horses to help others.

This is a great story from the Char-Koosta News, about how Amanda Held, an Equine Sense Coaching certified equine specialist has partnered with Shaunda Albert, a licensed addictions counselor and certified Rehabilitation counselor, at the local Voc Rehab Program, to help their clients find a path to health and healing through work with horses.

I love reading, Shaunda Alberts statement that “The Equine Assisted therapy is extremely beneficial for treating chemical dependency, PTSD, Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD), setting boundaries, helping domestic violence victims and other issues. It is my intention to assist our clients and their families and other individuals that have been diagnosed with PTSD and other mental health issues”.

Though our program is structured differently, we embrace the same principal that through work with horses, our clients can find a path to healing, health and happiness.

We work with children as young as 4 years of age, teens and adults, struggling with social, emotional, behavioral and mental health issues.

If you, or someone you know, are having hard time dealing with life’s challenges, call or email us to schedule a visit. We will show you around the ranch, introduce you to our wonderful equine partners, learn more about what you are dealing with and share how we might be able to help.

 

Posted in Addiction, ADHD, Anxiety Disorders, Asperger's, Autism, Bipolar, Children's issues, Depression, Eating Disorders, FAS, Grief, Mental Health, OCD, ODD, Other challenges, Other programs, PTSD, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Schizophrenia, Seniors Program, Sensory processing issues, Team Building, Teens | Leave a comment

Kids, Teens and Adults on the Autism Spectrum Can Surprise Us!

Nevada Equine Assisted Therapy has worked with many people on the Autism Spectrum. From children as young as 4, to teens and even adults, work with horses can offer many new and potentially powerful experiences for those on the spectrum.

Reading this touching story in the New York Times, by Cammie McGovern, about her son, Ethan, reminded me that we not only need to be ‘realistic’ in our expectations for our special needs kiddos, but we also need to never stop dreaming big. Without offering them the opportunity to try new and sometimes challenging things, neither they, nor we, can know what they are capable of and may enjoy.

Kids on the spectrum can be resistant. Getting them out the door, even to go to school, may be a challenge. They may have repetitive behaviors that interfere with doing things that have a beginning, a middle and an end. The good news is that in our program, we can start anywhere that is the right place for our client! Maybe the first session they meet a horse, feel their coat and watch while a Qualified Mental Health Associate grooms the horse, name the tools that she is using. Heck, with one kiddo, who was so impulsive that we had a hard time keeping track of him and his horse at the same time, we got him up on his second visit (NOT our usual path!) so that we only had one moving object to manage – AND HE LOVED IT!

I do want to say, that our program is not a traditional ‘Therapeutic Riding Program’. We do not have side walkers or horse handlers, so our program is not always a good fit, but, if we discover that this is the case, we are happy to refer families on to other programs in our area. But, we absolutely invite you to call or email to schedule a visit to see if we can help you and your child/teen/young adult experience the joy, growth and learning that horses have to share!

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ADHD Can Be Very Complicated

More and more we are learning that ADHD can have a variety of causes and influences. From genetics to diet, exposure to trauma and now, more information regarding sleep deficiencies, so many things can affect those struggling with ADHD.

In this article in Medical News Today, Prof. Sandra Kooij, from the VU University Medical Centre in Amsterdam, the Netherlands states sleep issues and ADHD “may be fundamentally interconnected”. Dr. Kooij goes on to encourage further study of this connection.

From personal experience, we have heard time after time from our clients with ADHD (PTSD) and their parents/care givers about sleep issues. Trouble unwinding and getting into bed, trouble falling asleep, nightmares, waking up during the night (and wandering the house!), trouble waking up/getting up in the morning.

There are some things that we can do through work with horses. We help parents/caregivers create calming end-of-day routines that may include visualizations and practicing of self-soothing exercises that have been learned while working with a client’s horse. Through work with horses, we help our clients become more aware of their own bodies, helping them learn to isolate/relax body parts, which can help a child/teen to relax and perhaps find their way back to sleep when they wake up in the night. We can also help with setting up step-by-step routines for the morning, something that our clients learn and practice while grooming their horses. I could go on, but I think you can see that work with horses can be very beneficial.

If you, a child or a teen in your care is struggling, seek help. We are here and would be happy to arrange a visit to our ranch. We will show you around, introduce our wonderful herd of horses, learn more about what you are dealing with and share how we may be able to help. Call or email us and we will make it happen.

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Life Experiences and PTSD

Watching the news this morning is heartbreaking. We see families hunkered down and hoping that they survive. We see families dragging themselves through waist high water, trying to find someplace dry. We see families in shelters, wondering if friends and other family members are safe and if they will have a home to go back to when the water recedes.

I can’t help but wonder about the emotional toll all of this devastation will have on people.

We think of PTSD as a issue people struggle with after a violent situation. War. Assault. Death. But, in truth PTSD can be triggered by any traumatic incident or situation.

In the days, weeks and months to come, the people of Texas and all those affected by hurricane Harvey are going to need so much. Some people will have lost everything. Some will have ‘survived,’ but they still may pay an emotional price. This is especially true of children and teens who may lack the ability to properly process what has occurred.

There is research that indicates that PTSD can be somewhat cumulative. A child struggles with the death of a close family member. A teen is in an auto accident. An adult is involved in assault. And then the house burns down and they just can’t deal with things anymore. Hurricane Harvey may be the only trigger or may be the last straw for those affected. We must not only send money for food and blankets, we must see that there is physical and mental health care for those who live through this terrible, terrible situation.

If you or a loved one is struggling with depression, anxiety or PTSD, whatever the circumstances, seek help. You don’t have to go through this alone. We are here to help. We can provide referrals to licensed professionals as well as provide ancillary services that can be a powerful way to help you towards health and healing. Call us or email us if you would like to visit the ranch. We will show you around, introduce our incredible herd, learn more about what you are dealing with and share how we may be able to help.

OUR HEARTS GO OUT TO ALL THOSE WHO ARE STRUGGLING TODAY.

 

Posted in Addiction, ADHD, Anxiety Disorders, Children's issues, Depression, Grief, In my opinion, Mental Health, PTSD, Teens | Leave a comment

When Children Fail to Cope

Most kids experience some resistance/anxiety to new situations. We are not surprised when on the first day of school to see kids crying and clinging as parents dolefully walk away from them. But, in a short time, most kids adjust. They may later express some concern about other new and different situations, but usually, with just a bit of reassurance, most kids are able to step out and become more confident with each challenge they face.

But, this is not true for every child. There is that child that struggles every day to get up and out the door to go to school. They will try every angle to not have to go. They have few friends and become more and more isolated as time goes by. Without interventions, this can become life defining and possibly even life threatening.

This article in NEWS Medical Life Sciences, talks about social anxiety, its causes, the symptoms and things that can be done to help our children heal.

Nevada Equine Assisted Therapy offers a unique and powerful intervention that combines aspects of both cognitive and exposure therapy. Our clients are exposed to new and potentially challenging situations while working with them on building coping and self-soothing skills. Each client works with a Qualified Mental Health Associate (QMHA) and the horse of their choice. They start on the ground learning about horse and herd behavior, about how to stay safe around horses and building a relationship with the horse they work with. As time goes by, our clients mount and work on these and other skills, such as making choices and solving problems, that help build their confidence help them see that they can be successful.

If you have a child or teen that struggles with social situations, that ‘hates’ going to school or seems to be isolated, with few friends, perhaps you need to consider finding help. We are here for you. Give us a call of send us an email and we will schedule a visit. We will show you around the ranch, introduce our wonderful horses, learn more about what you are dealing with and share how we may be able to help.

 

 

Posted in Addiction, Anxiety Disorders, Asperger's, Autism, Children's issues, Depression, Eating Disorders, Mental Health, OCD, PTSD, Reactive Attachment Disorder, Teens | Leave a comment