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Archive for the ‘blog’ Category

postheadericon Akolade’s 2nd Annual Injury Management & Return to Work Conference 2014

Dr McMahon was invited to speak at the “Akolade’s 2nd Annual Injury Management & Return to Work Conference”. He presented the topic  “Examining the Key Drivers of Organisational Health and Occupational Wellbeing” on 18th February 2014.

postheadericon The NSW State Legal Conference

Dr McMahon presented at the NSW Legal Conference on Wed 28th August 2013 on ”Psychological Injury After Motor Vehicle Accidents”.

postheadericon Professional Development Seminar

Dr McMahon presented “Managing claimants with complex psychological conditions” at Xchanging on Wed 7th August 2013

postheadericon Akolade’s 2nd Annual Psychological Injury Management Summit

Dr McMahon presented a topic on “Revaluating the fundamental drivers of psychological injury in the workplace” at Akolade’s Workplace Psychological Injury Management 2013 Seminar on 30th July 2013.

We had received positive feedback and his presentation was very informative.

postheadericon Australian Injury Management and Workers Compensation Summit 2013

Australian Injury Management and Workers Compensation Summit 2013 is an event that comprehensively covers workplace injury from prevention to workers compensation claims management and return to work strategies.

Dr McMahon is invited by Akolade to be a guest speaker at the conference.

He has presented a topic:  “The Critical Issues Associated With psychological Injury Diagnosis and managing them in the Workplace” to the managers, advisors, officers of different organisations this morning.

He will also conduct a workshop on this coming Wednesday 6th February 2013 on “How to safeguard your workplace from psychological injury claims”.

postheadericon NSW SIA Education Session

The New South Wales Workers Compensation Self Insurers Association Incorporated (NSW SIA), a not for profit association of NSW Employers, is organized to manage the own risks associated with workers compensation. It aims to promote self insurance with consideration on worker’s compensation, injury management and work, health and safety matters. They do so by educating the members as well as those who are seeking for self insurance.

With the said objectives, NSW SIA invited Dr. John McMahon to present a talk on “Malingering from a Psychological Point Of View” during their NSW SIA Education session held on the 11th of September 2012 at the Masonic Club in Sydney.

Because of Dr. McMahon’s positive response to their request, Sydney Clinical Psychologists Centre’s principal psychologist was once again invited by the organization to their Executive Committee’s meeting to acknowledge his involvement in their Education Program in September 2012.

postheadericon A Closer Look On Our Brains

Have you ever imagined how your brain looks like? I’m sure you’d be interested to see it.

Watch this close look of the brain, in 3D, revealing its complex structure in an accurate and comprehensive illustration.

Brain Show Elegant Organization New Video Reveals




postheadericon Discovering the Types of Anxiety Disorders: Social Phobia and its Symptoms

Anxiety disorders are the most prevalent mental illness in Australia. There are several types of anxiety disorder that may affect you or someone you know. Like any form of disorder, it is best discovered, assessed and treated the earliest possible time. Clinical Psychologists are experts in treating mental disorders, and a face to face consultation can help you get the best assessment and treatment. They will be able to identifying the type of anxiety disorder and provide a therapy program that will be effective for the kind of disorder. But to give you some background of the types of anxiety disorders, let’s review one form: social phobia.

Social phobia is a common type of anxiety disorder with a high that are prevalence in Australia. It involves intense fear of criticism, frequent feelings of embarrassment or humiliation in common everyday situations that do not warrant these reactions. It often leads the person suffering this disorder to avoid situations that may bring them to the attention of others, including events that most people enjoy like parties, functions and public social events. It may prevent them from effectively carrying out their work duties, such as avoiding giving presentation or being overly sensitive to normal feedback in the workplace and interpreting this as criticism.

Symptoms of Social Phobia

We may feel anxiety when we are asked to give a talk in front of a number of people, be assertive at work, particularly when dealing with a boss, or any other similar situations. However, when we feel an overpowering anxiety and distress over such events, that we cannot do them or they are very upsetting then it might be social phobia. People with social phobia sometimes feel anxiety over daily events that most people are relaxed about such as having to eat in public, or engage in small talk, or having to stand in cue or wait in a group of strangers. It is sometimes the case that the fears in social phobia are only directed to a particular activity or event such as writing in front of others.

If you constantly feel the fear of being criticized and you dread to do something unacceptable during those instances then consult a clinical psychologist. Don’t let your anxiety prevent you having a normal daily life. Social phobia can be effectively treated.

Treating Social Phobia

The psychologists who will look after you will start with a history of your phobia. You will discuss with them the details of how it has affected your past. They will help you understand how the phobia developed and how the phobia maintains itself in your life, and if there are any complicating factors such as drug and alcohol use which some people suffering from social phobia use to overcome their anxiety. The next phase of therapy usually involves learning strategies to change the beliefs and behaviors that maintain the phobia. The final goal of therapy is improving social networks and the enjoyment of relationships and returning to roles at work and in personal life that the phobia was preventing.

postheadericon Anxiety Disorders: How It Affects Our Everyday Lives

Being “stressed out” has become a common feeling for people nowadays. Our lifestyles are full of stress-inducing circumstances like financial difficulties, workplace struggles, personal relationship breakdowns and so much more. These problems can be pressing to cause us to lose our temper as well as affect our focus on certain activities. It can even make it difficult for us to sleep. You may find it really difficult to be in a stressful situation. With that thought in mind, can you imagine how difficult it is to be suffering anxiety disorder?

Anxiety and its Extent in Australia

Anxiety is actually healthy. It is the normal response of our body to danger. We worry, feel tense and get scared when faced with a stressful situation. It keeps us alert and focused when under pressure. It spurs us to action and motivates us to solve our problems on hand. But if this automatic alarm becomes a pressing feeling; constant and overwhelming that it interferes with our normal activities and disrupts our relationships, then it starts to become a disorder in itself. When it stops being functional and starts to distract us from our everyday activities, we should immediately take action to resolve it.Anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorder in Australia. Out of four people, one will suffer an anxiety disorder at some point in their life. One in every seven people will experience a type of anxiety disorder in a year. By gender, one in every six women and one in every ten men will suffer anxiety disorder in a year. That means a number of people are having a hard time trying to function because of anxiety.

Common Manifestations of Anxiety

Anxiety disorders are best treated as soon as possible. Research has demonstrated that cognitive behavioural therapy is an effective treatment for anxiety. It is important to treat anxiety disorders because there is a high risk they will recur if inappropriately treated. The recurrence may cause the person to feel more anxious and depressed and may cause them to lose hope. So how would a person know to seek professional help for an anxiety disorder:

  1. They constantly feel tense, worried and on the edge even if the situation doesn’t require them to do so.
  2. They feel too anxious that they find it hard to work, study or fulfill other responsibilities.
  3. They feel anxiety over everyday situations and they avoid these situations thinking that avoidance will be enough to solve the issue.
  4. They feel irrational fear and they can’t shake it, such as persistent fears of the dark, mice, rats, or of bad things happening without evidence.
  5. They constantly want to do things in certain ways because they think that something terrible will happen if done otherwise, such as counting, checking things repeatedly, washing excessively etc.
  6. They feel sudden, unexpected panic that causes their hearts to pound, shortness of breath, tension, nausea, and these are often accompanied by fears of having a heart attack, stroke or other catastrophic physical event.
  7. They apprehend danger and catastrophe to come any moment, from anywhere.
  8. They also suffer physical symptoms such as:
    • Sweating
    • Headache
    • Insomnia (difficulty sleeping)
    • Pounding heart
    • Upset stomach
    • Diarrhea
    • Dizziness
    • Frequent urination
    • Fatigue
    • Shortness of breath
    • Muscle tension
    • Tremors and twitches

If you feel these sensations, or have excessive worries or concerns we encourage you to seek the advice of a clinical psychologist. Not all stress is an anxiety disorder, but when these symptoms occur without reason, or excessively, or interfere with day to day life, or your enjoyment of life then we encourage you to seek treatment. Contact us at Sydney Clinical Psychologist Centre.

postheadericon Educational Assessment And Its Benefits To School Children

Psychological assessments are of different types. One of which is Psycho-Educational Assessment. This type of assessment focuses on the intellectual ability and educational level of achievement of a person. The result of this assessment is generally used for educational purposes, including educational planning. But why do we need to conduct or undergo psycho-educational assessment?People, especially children, are of different learning capabilities. You may not be directly aware of it but not all of us are able to comprehend the matters that other people of the same age are capable of understanding. That fact can be greatly stressful to children.

Children, teenagers and schooling young adults are the ones who are constantly under scrutiny for their educational capabilities. The examinations and evaluations done at school reflect their ability to understand classroom discussions and digest information shared to them. Failing to level up with the rest of the group because of an unrecognized learning disability, mental retardation or attentional problem can cause undue self-perception. They may end up feeling insufficient, insecure and isolated within their group.

Without psycho-educational assessment, we may end up enrolling highly intellectual children with those who are not of the same level of thinking. We may also end up enrolling slow learners with those who are capable of understanding higher level of thinking. Both situations are distressing for the concerned children. Their uniqueness in their class will eventually stand out.

Children with high level of intellectual quotient normally speak their mind. They will share their thoughts and ideas knowing that those are vital and correct information. Their classmates who are not as intelligent as them may find them unusual. That will lead them to look at high-IQ children as strange individuals. Such situation may end up in isolation. Others may even end up aggressing these children for showing intelligence.

Slow learners will have a different experience all together. They will slowly notice their inability to join with the rest of the group in class discussions. They will eventually draw away from the crowd and stay behind. These children will keep their silence fearing that their inability will be discovered by other people. They will end up isolating themselves and regressing further.

These circumstances can be avoided by making informed decisions through psycho-educational assessment. This type of psychological assessment can help in identifying students who may require assistance or tutoring in specific domains or attendance to a special needs class. Behavioural problems that interfere with the academic progress of a student may also be identified in the process. Gifted and talented students are also discovered through such type of psychological assessment. That will enable parents and guardians to enroll their children in programs that will be beneficial to their learning capabilities. These types of decisions and applications can be considered part of educational planning. With the help of a clinical psychologist, an educational plan can be prepared for the children to help them excel in their studies.

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