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Psychology Today Mental Wealth

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Mental Wealth blog on Psychology Today

Psychology Today Mental Wealth
“Mental Wealth” by Victoria L Dunckley M.D.

Mental Wealth aims to raise awareness of integrative or holistic methods that anyone can implement to optimize treatment, minimize the need for medication, and support healthy brain development in children, teens, and young adults. Over the years I’ve realized that addressing screen-time is often the missing link in successful treatment, so many of the articles focus on various aspects of “screens”: harmful physiological effects, mindful screen-management, and the benefits of restriction.

  • Hey Parents – Put Down Those Devices
    Did you know being strict about your own screen time greatly improves the odds that you'll manage your children's in a healthy and mindful manner? Here are 7 reasons why. ... read more
    Source: Dr D’s Mental Wealth blog on Psychology TodayPublished on 2017-06-27By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D.
  • Growing Up in a False Reality
    Seeking artificial validation not only results in addictive, destructive behaviors, it also displaces the very experiences that would otherwise offer us authentic validation. ... read more
    Source: Dr D’s Mental Wealth blog on Psychology TodayPublished on 2017-05-20By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D.
  • The Radical Notion of Returning to Handwriting
    Need to remember something or learn something new? Write it by hand. ... read more
    Source: Dr D’s Mental Wealth blog on Psychology TodayPublished on 2017-05-13By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D.
  • 10 Ways to Protect the Brain from Daily Screen Time
    You may have heard that screen-time can wreak havoc on children's nervous systems. But aside from restricting technology, what can parents do to buffer against overstimulation? ... read more
    Source: Dr D’s Mental Wealth blog on Psychology TodayPublished on 2017-03-31By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D.
  • Why Social Media is NOT Smart for Middle School Kids
    Wondering why your middle schooler's social media use has ratcheted up your stress levels? Understanding the brain at this age can help you can take back control. ... read more
    Source: Dr D’s Mental Wealth blog on Psychology TodayPublished on 2017-03-26By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D.
  • Toward Integration: Mental Health Defined
    We're all familiar with mental health issues or symptoms. But what does a mental healthy brain look like? And how do we get there? ... read more
    Source: Dr D’s Mental Wealth blog on Psychology TodayPublished on 2017-03-03By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D.
  • Is Guilt Affecting How You Manage Your Child’s ScreenTime?
    Parental guilt can undermine the best of intentions when it comes to restricting children's screentime. Here's how to give guilt the boot. ... read more
    Source: Dr D’s Mental Wealth blog on Psychology TodayPublished on 2017-01-03By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D.
  • Autism and Screen Time: Special Brains, Special Risks
    Is your gut telling you that your child with autism has too much screen time? Here are 11 reasons why ASD kids are more vulnerable to screen time effects, including addiction. ... read more
    Source: Dr D’s Mental Wealth blog on Psychology TodayPublished on 2016-12-31By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D.
Missing piece of the brain puzzle

Video Games & Your Child’s Brain

Do you have an uneasy feeling that playing video games is bad for your child’s brain?  It’s much worse than you think!

We all know how pervasive video games are in our children’s  lives, but what most people don’t know is the profound negative and lasting effects they have on a growing brain.   This report is based on Dr Dunckley’s experience with several hundred pediatric and young adult patients on- and off- video games: what symptoms occur due to gaming and other screen-time activities, how damage occurs over time, what systems are affected, and what happens to your child’s nervous system during and after an “electronic fast.”   This, combined with compiling the research, makes for a very compelling argument that video games, computer, texting etc can cause short and long-term negative effects.

Sign up HERE for your FREE Save Your Child’s Brain minicourse.  Arm yourself with the truth about video games, and get your child’s brain on track.

Today, many children are misdiagnosed, for example as ‘bipolar’ or ‘ADHD’, if they have meltdowns or trouble focusing.  Even more disturbing, some of these children are put on psychotropic medication unnecessarily, when the real culprit is over-stimulation from electronics.  Parents should first educate themselves on the effects of electronic screen media, then consider taking a solid three to four week break–an electronic fast— if their child is having any problems at home, in school, or with peers.

But how does one do this, in this day and age? First, you, the parent, must be convinced yourself that it’s worth it.  You must learn what happens in the eyes, brain, and body during gaming or other electronic media stimulation to cause dysregulation of mood and arousal levels.  Dr. Dunckley’s program explains the behind-the-scenes action in simple terms with lots of examples. Then, to be fully committed, you need to learn about the potential benefits of the electronic fast:

  • Better compliance, e.g.  being told to do a chore or get ready for bed.
  • Smoother homework time- more gets done with fewer tears and tantrums.
  • Improved reading and math skills*
  • Improved attention**
  • Better quality sleep, due to both sleep “signals” and body clock being reset.***
  • Better frustration tolerance, fewer meltdowns, less aggression****
  • Less irritability, depression, and agitation.

Lastly, you need to know how to implement it.  This is the tough part! Parents get overwhelmed with the just the thought of telling their child.  Dr Dunckley’s program specifically addresses this issue, and provides practical tools to help you and your child succeed.

What the FREE minicourse provides…

This is a preview to Dr Dunckley’s 4 week “Save Your Child’s Brain” teleseminar program, which is being developed to help support parents in what may seem to be a daunting task.   “The hardest part for me as  a clinician is helping the parent who resists.  It’s either because they’re not convinced of the video games’ impact,  because they feel it’s too difficult, if not impossible to implement in today’s world, or because they feel they’d be giving up precious moments of peace and quiet,” Dr Dunckley states.  “The program will address these concerns and helps the parent take it day-by-day, learning as they go.”