Keri Downs, Psy.D.

Keri Downs, Psy.D. is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in the State of Illinois.  She completed her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology at Dartmouth College in 2003.  Keri went on to earn her Master of Arts Degree in Mental Health Counseling from Boston University and Doctor of Psychology Degree (Psy.D.) in Clinical Psychology from Roosevelt University in Chicago.  Keri has experience working with various populations in a variety of settings, including residential treatment centers, therapeutic day schools, public school systems, inpatient hospitals, and outpatient clinics throughout the Chicagoland and Metro Boston areas.

Keri has special interest in working with children and adolescents, trauma, and diversity issues and is trained in Trauma-Focused Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT).  Through her doctoral dissertation, Keri explored racial identification in black-white biracial children.  Keri’s approach to psychotherapy encompasses a wide range of interventions that typically rooted in strengths-based, relationship-based, and cognitive-behavioral theories.  She is aware of the strengths of her clients and their families and, whenever possible, incorporates creative approaches into all modalities of therapy.  Keri also believes that the therapeutic relationship is a powerful tool to help individuals gain deeper awareness and insight into their emotions, behaviors, and relationships.

Keri joined Dr. Parisi & Associates, P.C. in 2017 and works as an outpatient psychotherapist in his Chicago office providing psychological testing and counseling services to children, adolescents, and adults.  Keri has a passion for playing basketball and boxing and she is an avid fan of hometown teams (DISCLAIMER:  Since moving here, Keri has opened up her heart to the Chicago teams as well!! 😀 ).

Joan Erenberg, LCPC, BC-DMT, RYT

Ms. Joan Erenberg received her Master of Arts Degree from Columbia College of Chicago with specialization in the creative arts therapies and has been practicing in the Chicago area for over ten years with a wide array of cultural backgrounds.  Joan helps her clients tap into their inner resources to cultivate psychological balance and well-being and is interested in working with mood, anxiety, grief and loss, body image issues, and Post-Traumatic Stress and emotional trauma.  Joan collaborates with her clients to better manage emotional challenges and psychological symptoms that are interfering with daily functioning as well as to address life transitions, existential issues or guide those who are feeling stuck in old patterns and beliefs.  Joan believes that growth and healing occur when individuals are empowered to integrate the psychological, social, emotional, creative, and physical aspects of self and invites her clients to explore coping strategies to better manage both interpersonal stressors and internal conflict.  Joan integrates a variety of treatment modalities into her helping approach including cognitive-behavioral, dialectical behavioral, relational, humanistic / client-centered, existential, mindfulness, yoga, and creative arts / expressive therapies.

Joan joined Dr. Parisi and Associates, P.C. as a psychotherapist focusing mostly on adolescents and adults in his Chicago office.  She lives in Chicago and also facilitates special groups and workshops to promote interpersonal learning.

Kathleen Alberts, LCPC, CCSOTS

kathleen_albertsMs. Kathleen Alberts, LCPC, CCSOTS is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) in the State of Illinois and a Clinically Certified Sex Offender Treatment Specialist (CCSOTS).  Kathleen earned her Bachelors of Social Worker (BSW) and Masters of Social Work (MSW) Degrees Summa Cum Laude from George Williams College of Social Work at Aurora University in Aurora, Illinois.

Kathleen’s career in behavioral healthcare spans over two decades where she has worked in nearly every capacity imaginable.  She has served as Clinical Director of the Adolescent Sex Offender Treatment Unit with the Friends of Children under Supervision Program in Illinois.  She also worked at the non-defunct UHS, Streamwood Behavioral Health Systems Residential Program and has worked in private practice since 1993 serving all age groups with an emphasis on treating children and adolescents, self-harming behaviors, victims of crime / abuse, PTSD, bullying, domestic violence, sexual harassment, families, parenting, marriage counseling, court-approved divorce and family mediation, court-appointed child custody evaluation, court-appointed expert on child behavior and emotional disorders and families, Sex Offender Treatment and Assessment (SOMB Approved), supervision, and psychiatric assessment and treatment of anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, and personality disorders.  Kathleen’s treatment style is eclectic and borrows from CBT, DBT,  family systems, trauma-focused psychotherapy, solution-focused psychotherapy, mindfulness, and play therapy.

Kathleen lives in the Western suburbs and joined the staff of Dr. Parisi & Associates, P.C. as an outpatient psychotherapist at his Mount Prospect office in 2015.

Michael Juhasz, LCPC, CADC

mike_juhasz picMichael (Mike) Juhasz, LCPC, CADC is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) in Illinois and received his Masters of Arts Degree in Psychology from the University of Illinois, Springfield in 1980.  He is also a Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselor (CADC) in the State of Illinois.  He has spent many years working in the mental health / substance abuse field utilizing a wide range of cognitive-behavioral interventions to focus on relapse prevention and mental health wellness.  His clinical orientation is eclectic – meaning he is able to provide specific counseling strategies to meet the needs of his clients.

Mike believes in a wellness-based approach to behavioral healthcare – advocating that his clients take care of themselves physically, mentally, and spiritually to live a balanced lifestyle for optimal psychological well-being.  His professional interests include treating self-esteem issues, depression, anxiety, life-transition issues, and substance abuse related disorders.  Mike has extensive experience working in an outpatient community mental health clinic as well as an inpatient settings.  He joined the staff of Dr. Parisi & Associates, P.C. in 2015 and works in the Mount Prospect office location.

Mike has been married to his lovely wife for 31 years and lives in the Northwest suburbs.  He enjoys barbecuing on the grill, visiting with friends, exercising, and is a Chicago sports fan.  His peers tell him that he has a warm personality and is easy to talk to.

Nupur Sharma, LCPC

nupur_sharma picNupur Sharma, LCPC is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) in the State of Illinois and is certified in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.  She obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology for Loyola University in Chicago and her Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology.

Nupur’s clinical experience includes assessment and counseling of adolescent, adults, and elderly clients.  She has expertise in the areas of depression, anxiety and relationship issues.  Nupur treats both individuals and families and has a strong, multicultural orientation in her therapeutic approach – recognizing the importance of cultural sensitivity with clients with immigration and acculturation difficulties.   She joined the staff of Dr. Parisi & Associates, P.C. as an outpatient counselor and works in the Mount Prospect office location.

Nupur is passionate about advocating for individuals and families – empowering them to change.  Her clinical approach has been influenced by both Eastern and Western philosophies that help restore balance to her client’s physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual well-being.

Nupur is a bilingual / bicultural psychotherapist and is fluent in both English and Hindi.

The First 3 Steps to Changing Unhealthy Behavior

Change BehaviorsUnhealthy behavior can include bad habits such as smoking, drinking, poor diet choices, and lack of physical activity. These behaviors can cause greater health risks, especially in middle-aged people. Statistics show that over 20% of people smoke or drink (or both), over 40% of people are physically inactive, and over 30% of people are obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control (1).

However, these people are not the only ones affected by the poor behavior – approximately 25% of health care costs is spent on treating the effects of this voluntary unhealthy behavior (2). So what can be done about this increasing problem? If you or someone you know is making poor choices, a change needs to take place.

1. Determine the cause. There are many things that can cause a person to make poor choices.  These causes can vary for people of different ages, genders, and races.  In young people, habits such as smoking or drinking can be a result of peer pressure; poor diet and exercise choices can come from a lack of education regarding these issues.

In adults, however, the most common cause for unhealthy behavior is stress (3).  Turning to comfort food can cause obesity and inactivity while having a drink to relax after work can easily cause a drinking problem.  Recognizing the cause of your unhealthy behavior is the first step to changing it.

2. Make a plan. Once you have determined why you make the poor choices, you need to determine that you want to make a change.  It must come from you, not others, and you must put a plan of action in place to achieve it.  There are some people who know they have a problem but don’t do anything about it; there are others who know they need to change but continually put it off (4).  In order to accomplish a lifestyle change, a firm decision and commitment must be made.  One way to reach your goals is to find motivation.  Whether it is your health or that of someone that you love, find a reason for the change.

3. Seek support from others. There are support groups created to help people cope with dependency, disease, and social issues (5).  These support groups allow you to share with and learn from others in a face-to-face setting.  When making a change, it is very easy to relapse into your old habits.

A support group will provide the accountability you need to stay on track.  If you are unable to find a good support group, you can start one in your area.  This may provide you with even more motivation since others will be relying on you to lead by example.

Changing is hard – there is no doubt about that. However, it is possible. It simply takes determination and a conscious effort on a daily basis to make better choices in your life. Changing your unhealthy habits will be beneficial to you as well as your family and friends, and in the end your only regret will be not doing it sooner.

Mark D. Parisi, Psy.D. & Associates, P.C. provides counseling, psychological testing, and psychotropic medication management in Mount Prospect and Chicago – serving surrounding Cook, Lake, DuPage, and Will Counties. They accept most insurance and offer extremely affordable sliding scale rates. Call (847) 909-9858 for a free, no-obligation telephone consultation.

 

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Sources:

  1. Prevalence of Selected Unhealthy Behavior Characteristics, Statistics of unhealthy behavior, 2007, http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5916a7.htm
  2. Voluntary Health Risks: Who Should Pay? Cost of unhealthy behavior, 2015, http://www.scu.edu/ethics/publications/iie/v6n1/voluntary.html
  1. Americans Engage in Unhealthy Behavior to Manage Stress, Causes of unhealthy behavior, 2015, http://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2006/01/stress-management.aspx
  2. Why It’s Hard to Change Unhealthy Behavior, How to change, 2009, http://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/why-its-hard-to-change-unhealthy-behavior
  3. Receiving Social Support Online, Importance of support groups, 2001, http://her.oxfordjournals.org/content/16/6/693.full

 

Alicia Roberts, LCPC

Ali Roberts PicAlicia Roberts, LCPC received her Master’s Degree (M.S.) in Clinical Psychology from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University in 2009.  She went on to earn her Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) certification in 2012.  Ali’s journey as a professional counselor has taken her down many paths.  She has been a tireless champion for the elderly, chronic mentally ill, and medically disabled populations – having served as a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator (LNHA) for several years and presently working as a marketing specialist for physician relations in long-term care settings.

Ali has previously worked in an intensive outpatient program at a hospital with chronic mentally ill adults.  She enjoys utilizing cognitive behavioral therapy approaches in her clinical practice.

Ali joined the staff of Dr. Parisi & Associates, P.C. in 2016 as an outpatient provider.  She is Spanish bilingual.  Ali enjoys traveling and spending time with her family, friends, and beloved dog.

Frank Gutierrez, LCPC, CADC

frank_gutierrezMr. Frank Gutierrez, LCPC, CADC is licensed in the State of Illinois as a Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) and is certified as an Alcohol and Drug Counselor (CADC).  He received his Master of Science Degree in Counseling Psychology (M.S.) from Argosy University of Professional Psychology in Chicago in 2009.  He has experience working with children, adolescents, adults, and families and feels comfortable providing counseling services using a variety of treatment modalities including Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, Psychodynamic Therapy, and Existential Therapy.

Frank joined the staff of Mark D. Parisi, Psy.D. & Associates, P.C. in 2015 and works as an outpatient provider at the Chicago office location.  He is fully Spanish bilingual.  Frank is well-respected for his multicultural experience.  He has worked with a wide array of client providing individual, group, family, and couples’ counseling.  Frank has also received training in working with DCFS referrals.

Frank takes a holistic approach to therapy designed to unite mind, body, and spirit.