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Teen Behavioral Health News - March 2015
In This Issue
C.E. Webinar
Inviting Behavioral Health Professionals


Join us for an online webinar presentation offering free C.E. Units. Sovereign Welcomes


 Dr. Leslee S. Brown

to present on


"Travel Psychology: How to earn CEU's and boost the power of your CV on International

short courses."

Time: 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM PST 


Date: Wednesday April 15, 2015 


CBT Shows Promise as Adolescent Treatment

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a therapeutic approach frequently used to treat anxiety and depressive disorders. While CBT has been traditionally used on adults, new research suggests that the therapy may be applicable for much more than reducing anxiety, not only being effective for children and adolescents, but offering considerable benefits in the years following initial treatment.


The study, published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, found that patients who did not respond to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for anxiety in childhood suffered from more chronic and enduring patterns of suicidal ideation at age seven to 19 years after treatment. Also, the results revealed that CBT treatment for adolescents may influence later thoughts of suicidal ideation.


The Temple University research team looked at 66 children who were treated for anxiety disorders such as separation, social and generalized anxiety....Read on

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White River Academy is a therapeutic boarding school

 for struggling adolescent males between ages 12 and 17 1/2, located in Delta, Utah. We provide a safe, secure and structured environment for young males to face and overcome their issues.  Using an experiential learning approach that makes students think about what they do, we combine therapeutic programming, a customized academic curriculum, and community service to foster personal growth and create men of character and integrity. White River Academy has a track record of success turning around the lives of troubled teens.

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How to Handle Drug Abuse at a Boarding Academy


At a therapeutic boarding academy, such as White River Academy, many students attend in order to overcome a health disorder or substance abuse issues. However, some teens may attempt to continue abusing drugs while at the academy. Though a sneaky adolescent may attempt to bring drugs to the facility, these teens are usually caught before long. A secure boarding school will not allow a student to get away with much before they are inevitably caught.



Nonetheless, each boarding academy or boarding school has its own rules and policy regarding drug abuse that takes place. Some schools may choose to have a no tolerance policy, in which the student will no longer be permitted to attend the school. The advantage of this method is that it will act as a powerful reinforcement for other students not to attempt such action. Though it is true some rebellious students may not care if they are kicked out, such teens will still have to deal with their parents regarding the nature of their dismissal....Read On

Meet Our Staff

Justin Nielson

School Administrator


Justin Nielson is one of the founders of White River Academy, which was established in July 2002. As School Administrator, he is responsible for setting and maintaining the philosophy and tone of White River Academy, making insightful decisions that impact parents, staff members and students in positive ways. He was instrumental in developing White River Academy's vision, goals, standards and policies and procedures, in accordance with the Mission Statement. Justin greatly enjoys working with people and has been very supportive of all the staff members and leadership, including counselors, shift managers and teachers. Justin is a key contributor in building cohesive relations with parents, prospective and current students and employees to meet individual and group goals for each young man who attends White River Academy. Prior to becoming School Administrator at White River Academy, Justin set up an admissions agency for world-wide therapeutic programs for at-risk youths. He also directed another school in Southern, Utah. Justin brings over 16 years of professional, caring experience and dedication in working with at-risk youths. In the past, he has worked in targeted case management and as a psychiatric technician and an assistant recreational therapist. For over 10 years, Justin also effectively partnered with Organization for Family Advancement (OFFA) and coordinated home life and educational opportunities between Foster Parents, the State of Utah and OFFA. In addition to his native language of English, Justin also communicates proficiently in Spanish. He learned to speak Spanish while living in Puerto Rico for five years, where he initially established White River Academy before moving it to its current location in Delta, Utah. 


When Drug Addiction Becomes More Important Than Your Relationship


Losing someone because of your addiction is equally as heartbreaking. Deep in your subconscious, you know you need this person in your life yet you cannot summon the same loving feelings you think you should have. Addiction steals your ability to feel love.


It can be difficult to know what to do when addiction becomes more important than the relationship. You may worry that you will feel guilty, or like you are giving up on a special person or missing out on someone special, if you walk away. On the other hand, you worry that someone else's addiction will ruin your life, or that your addiction will ruin theirs.


There are several signs that drug addiction is ruining your relationship. Arguments about drugs or things associated with drugs, such as money problems, staying out late, shirking home duties, and other irresponsible behavior...Read On

Social Media, Substance Abuse and Dating Violence Dot Rocky Terrain of Teen Years


Managing technology and social media topped the list when we asked two dozen experts what most challenges American teens. But rockier topics, including drugs and alcohol use and an increase in dating violence, also demand attention.

Today's teens are the tail end of the millennials, a group once described by The Pew Research Center as more racially tolerant and diverse, more tech savvy and "connected" socially than previous generations. It noted they are also most likely to say they are close to their parents, though they reject their parents' and others' religious and political views in record numbers.

They are also among the most distracted, according to high school English teacher Brian South of Naperville, Illinois. "I see my students as being attacked by competing messages all the time and they don't exactly know where to turn their attention at any given moment. They're on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, whatever, and there are so many voices out there. I see a lack of skill in knowing how to listen now," South said.

Read On...

Book Spotlight

How Forgiveness Mends the Heart

By Megan Feldman

Everyone can hold a grudge. One can stay mad at a former love forever because things didn't work out. Some people have been known to stop speaking to their parents for years over something that happened when they were teens.


Forgiveness is a struggle. Forgiveness means letting go of what someone did that caused pain and it is never easy. However, it is the better alternative. Holding a grudge is like putting a band-aid on an open wound; it may heal, but it will leave a scar. In contrast, forgiveness is like the process of cleaning out the wound properly and enduring the proper healing process. It will be painful at times, but in the long run it is better for everyone involved.


Megan Feldman understands how hard forgiveness is. As a veteran journalist who had just gone through a breakup, the last thing that someone would expect her to do was go on a world-wide adventure to learn about forgiveness. Yet, after meeting a man who had forgiven the teen who murdered his only son, that is just what Feldman did....Read On

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Delta, Utah 84624
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