If you’re a woman who struggles with depression, an eating disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or other mental health challenges, rely on the expert clinical team at Rappore, a telehealth-based mental health practice headquartered Manhattan, New York. Their licensed clinicians offer comprehensive women’s mental health telehealth services to patients in multiple states, including New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts, and Texas.
After nearly three years of coping with the stress caused by COVID-19, women are worried that the instability caused by the pandemic will persist. Women are still feeling the emotional and financial burden brought on by the loss of loved ones, as well as career disruption from juggling caregiving responsibilities with work. Women are facing the highest rate ever recorded of mental health symptoms, as well as loneliness and isolation.
Furthermore, women continue to face gender-based violence, sexual harassment, and job discrimination based on sexual orientation and identity. Women continue to provide most of the care for others, whether for children or the growing number of older people with chronic health issues.
Partly due to stress, women are more likely than men to suffer from common mental health problems such as depression, generalized anxiety, panic disorder, phobias, eating disorders and PTSD after experiencing trauma. Suicide attempts are two to three times as common among women. Multiple authoritative surveys indicate that measures of anxiety, depression, alcoholism, substance abuse, and loneliness are at all-time highs. Faith in government, universities and other institutions are at all-time lows.
It is not women against men. It is about women assuming more leadership and decision-making roles to influence public policy that benefit women, children, and families. As the stigma associated with mental health treatment subsides, more women are speaking up on topics like depression, anxiety, and substance abuse and more are seeking quality mental health care.
Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress but when it is difficult to control and impacts your daily life it can be disabling. Women are almost twice as likely as men to suffer from an anxiety disorder. Almost a quarter of women with anxiety experience serious consequences at school or work or with family and friends. It is important to understand the triggers, timing, and manifestations of anxiety to identify the specific diagnosis and the most effective treatment. The most frequent diagnoses among women are: Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Adjustment Disorder with Anxiety.
Feeling down or demoralized is a normal reaction to life stressors. However, once a crisis has ended, these reactions typically resolve. When one experiences lasting sadness, hopelessness, loss of interest and pleasure in life, irritability, sleeping too little or too much, loss of energy, guilt and self-criticism, loss of concentration, thoughts of death and self-harm or chronic aches or pains, headaches, or digestive problems, it is important to see a mental health professional to be evaluated for depression. Women are more prone to experience depression than men in part due to biological and hormonal variations as well as unique life stressors.
ADHD is thought to be much more common in boys and men. This is due in part to the fact that some of the symptoms, such as hyperactivity, impatience, irritation, and hostility, are more obvious to teachers, employers, and family members. With girls and women, manifestations of ADHD such as distractibility, social withdrawal, and low self-esteem may be less obvious. It is important to seek a consultation if frequently experiencing any of the following symptoms: difficulties starting, organizing, or finishing tasks or projects, forgetting appointments, and fidgeting or feeling overly active or driven to do things.
From an early age, women are bombarded with idealized images of beauty via social and print media as well as television. Self-induced vomiting, extreme food restriction, binging and abusing laxatives are among the risky behaviors associated with eating disorders. These disorders cause women extreme stress and interfere with relationships, school, and work. The physical toll of eating disorders includes excessive exercise and significant and life-threatening weight loss.
Women can be more vulnerable than men to the effects of alcohol since they are generally smaller and have less water in their bodies. As a result, the same amount of alcohol consumed by women results in a higher blood alcohol level and increased risk of hangovers and blackouts. Alcohol can have dangerous interactions with several medications, including anxiety and depression medications that are frequently used by women. Alcohol and other illicit drugs have significant effects on depression, anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and other mental health disorders, and chronic use may hinder therapeutic progress.
Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is approximately three times more prevalent in women than it is in men. BPD is characterized by extreme emotional distress including episodes of anxiety and anger as well as impulsivity and self-destructive behavior that can result in self-harm. Common are painful feelings of rejection and abandonment resulting in stormy relationships with others. Treatments for borderline personality disorder are now as effective as interventions for anxiety and depression.
PMS, or Premenstrual Syndrome, is characterized by a cluster of symptoms that begin about 7 to 10 days before menstruation and subside after menstruation begins. Symptoms include mood swings, anxiety, irritability, insomnia, social withdrawal, fatigue, breast tenderness and bloating. PMDD, or Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder, is a severe form of Premenstrual Syndrome that can disrupt work or school and damage relationships. Symptoms include extreme sadness, hopelessness, irritability, or anger, as well as the physical symptoms commonly associated with PMS.
Although pregnancy has historically been regarded as a time of mental well-being, current research indicates that up to 20% of pregnant women suffer from mood or anxiety disorders. Some women experience mood swings, depression, anxiety, fatigue, and other symptoms on a regular basis. If a woman has been taking medication prior to her pregnancy, a careful assessment should be done with a psychiatrist to determine whether the benefits outweigh the potential risks of continuing the medication. Women with a history of psychiatric illness who stop their psychotropic medication during pregnancy are especially susceptible to symptom recurrence.
Infertility can trigger frustration and anger, loss of self-esteem and self-confidence, depression, anxiety, and sexual dysfunction. When there are existing marital conflicts, infertility can trigger further strain on the relationship. It can be beneficial for a couple to discuss their feelings with a clinician.
The postpartum period, also referred to as the “fourth-trimester,” is defined as the six weeks following childbirth. For any mother, this can be a physically and emotionally exhausting time. Postpartum mental health issues range from mild depression (“baby blues”) which is short-lived to full blown depression which can be crippling and jeopardize the bonding between mother and infant. Undiagnosed and untreated postpartum depression is a major public health issue. Any persistent postpartum mental health issues should be evaluated by a clinician.
Because of the high prevalence of mental health issues in the postpartum period, some nursing mothers may need medication. Many medications are excreted in breast milk, therefore if a woman is breastfeeding, she should speak with a psychiatrist to assess the risk. Fortunately, the evidence suggests that adverse outcomes in nursing infants are uncommon.
Menopause is often accompanied by the onset of vasomotor symptoms including hot flashes and night sweats. Existing mental health disorders may worsen during menopause. Common challenges include feeling more stressed by life events, anxiety, depression, irritability, and fatigue, therefore consulting with a clinician can be especially beneficial.
Our highest priority is to recruit clinicians for whom work is a career, not just a job. We value clinicians’ compassion, authenticity, and dedication as much as their expertise. Our continuing education program ensures that our clinicians’ knowledge is up to date. We use a unique research based clinical questionnaire to help identify treatment targets and monitor progress and outcomes.
Our approach is to help women find solutions to their problems, foster their signature strengths, and help them envision and reach their goals. We tailor a variety of therapeutic interventions to the needs of each patient including CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR), Exposure Therapy, Psychodynamic Therapy, Motivational Interviewing and Positive Psychology.
We first explore alternatives to medication, but if medication is indicated we use the lowest effective dose for as short a period as possible. We partner with women to determine target symptoms and monitor progress as well as side effects.