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Are you a parent worried about your child’s behavior? Has your child’s mood and overall demeanor changed rapidly over a short period of time?  Despite trips to the physician and being told otherwise, does your child’s behavior still seem not okay?

Join CONNECT as we welcome Emily Owens from the Center for the Assessment and Prevention of Prodromal States (“CAPPS”), a clinical research center at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Behavior at UCLA. CAPPS specializes in identifying and treating adolescents and young adults (between the ages of 12 and 30) at high risk for developing psychotic disorders, in the “prodromal” phase of mental illness. CAPPS aims to protect vulnerable youth in hopes that a full-blown mental health challenge does not develop.  The majority of assessment and treatment services offered at CAPPS are free of charge. 

Efforts to reduce the rates of psychosis in youth are as critical as ever.  Psychosis affects between 1% and 3% of the population, and typically emerges between the ages of 15 and 30. The prodromal phase of psychosis is the critical time period when individuals are showing signs that they are at risk for developing a psychotic illness.  This at risk phase may last anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of years. During this time, individuals often experience symptoms of psychosis at a subthreshold level of intensity or at full intensity for short periods of time. Individuals and their families may also notice changes in functioning, such as trouble with school or work and social withdrawal or anxiety.

We hope you will join us on May 24th at 6PM.  To hear Emily on KPCW’s The Mountain Life, please click here: http://kpcw.org/post/mountain-life-may-17-2017. To read a front-page article in the Park Record about the lecture, please click here: http://www.parkrecord.com/news/education/lecture-to-explore-what-is-prodrome/

CAPPS Interview about the Vulnerable Mental Health of Teens and Young Adults: http://www.scpr.org/programs/take-two/2014/05/27/37615/the-vulnerable-mental-health-of-teens-and-young-ad/

Signs and Symptoms

While each person’s prodrome is unique, there are some common themes to look out for.   Early signs and symptoms can include any of the following:

Unusual Thinking

  • Confusion about what is real and what is imaginary
  • Suspiciousness or paranoid thinking
  • Feeling that your ideas are or behaviors are being controlled by outside forces
  • Unrealistic ideas of special identity or abilities
  • Preoccupation with the supernatural

Perceptual Disturbances

  • Sensitivity to sounds, easily distracted by background noises
  • Hearing things that other people don’t hear
  • Seeing things that others don’t see
  • Smelling, tasting, or feeling unusual sensations that other people don’t experience

Negative Symptoms

  • Wanting to spend more time alone
  • Not feeling motivated to do things
  • Trouble understanding conversations or written materials
  • Difficulty identifying and expressing emotions

Disorganized Symptoms

  • Trouble with attention
  • Neglect of personal hygiene
  • Odd appearance or behavior
  • Laughing at odd or inappropriate times
  • Problems with communication: vague, confused, muddled, racing or slow speech, difficulty staying on track or getting to the point
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