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Post-traumatic nightmares are a distressing experience for patients, and do not necessarily resolve when the contributing trauma is addressed. A number of different protocols have been developed to target nightmares, but research findings often conflict and the field lacks clear practice guidelines. This webinar will provide clinicians with an overview of the different options for treatment of post-traumatic nightmares, including a comparison of the components and hypothesized mechanism of action of each. In the second half of the presentation, a panel discussion will use a detailed case vignette to illustrate real-world practical and conceptual considerations for the treatment of a patient who presents with nightmares.
Target Audience: For behavioral health/healthcare providers who treat military personnel, veterans, and their families.
Instructional Level: Introductory
Differentiate between the evidence-based treatments for posttraumatic nightmares
Evaluate the proposed mechanisms of action of existing treatments for posttraumatic nightmares
Apply knowledge about the treatment of posttraumatic nightmares to a clinical case study
The Center for Deployment Psychology is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Center for Deployment Psychology maintains responsibility for this program and its content.
Carin M. Lefkowitz, Psy.D., is a clinical psychologist and Senior Military Behavioral Health Psychologist at the Center for Deployment Psychology (CDP) at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Lefkowitz earned her M.A. and Psy.D. in clinical psychology at Widener University, with a concentration in cognitive-behavioral therapy.
Prior to joining the CDP, she served as a psychologist at the Philadelphia VA Medical Center. In this capacity she provided individual and group psychotherapy with a focus on evidence-based treatments for PTSD and insomnia. She also served as a clinical supervisor to Vet Center clinicians, and psychology interns and practicum students at the Medical Center. Dr. Lefkowitz was a therapist on studies of evidence-based treatments for insomnia and traumatic nightmares, and coordinated the Medical Center's Cognitive Processing Therapy program.
Dr. Lefkowitz has published peer reviewed articles on prolonged exposure treatment for PTSD and innovative training options in sleep disorders. She maintains an adjunct instructor appointment with the Institute for Graduate Clinical Psychology at Widener University, and was previously an adjunct instructor in Chestnut Hill College's graduate psychology program and a Clinical Associate of the University of Pennsylvania's department of psychiatry.
Diana C. Dolan, Ph.D., CBSM is a clinical psychologist serving as an evidence-based (EBP) psychotherapy trainer with the Center for Deployment Psychology at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland. In this capacity, she develops and presents trainings on a variety of EBPs and deployment-related topics, and provides consultation services. Dr. Dolan is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force. As an active duty psychologist, she served as chief, Primary Care Psychology at Lackland AFB, Texas, overseeing integrated behavioral health services in primary care. She was also responsible for overseeing the base post-deployment health reassessment program. Having been raised in an active duty Air Force family, she has long-term experience in military life and the impact of deployment on families.
Dr. Dolan graduated from the University of North Texas with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and earned her doctorate in clinical health psychology and behavioral medicine from the University of North Texas. She completed a clinical psychology internship at Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center in San Antonio, Texas. Prior to her current position, she was a deployment behavioral health psychologist with CDP and the associate training director for the clinical psychology internship at Wilford Hall.
Dr. Dolan’s professional interests include behavioral treatment of health conditions, in particular sleep disorders and within brief-natured primary care settings, clinical psychology training and program evaluation, and military psychology.
Financial: Diana Dolan has no relevant financial relationship to disclose
Nonfinancial: Diana Dolan is a member of the Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (ABCT) and Society of Behavioral Sleep Medicine (SBSM)
Maegan M. Paxton Willing, MPH, MS is a doctoral candidate in Medical Psychology at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. In addition to her doctoral work, Maegan has earned Masters degrees in Public Health, with a concentration in Epidemiology and Biostatistics, and Clinical Psychology, and she is currently completing a graduate certificate in health professions education. Currently, she is working with sleep experts at the Center for Deployment Psychology and the National Intrepid Center of Excellence, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (NICoE) to increase understanding of military-related sleep concerns. Presently, her research focuses on the examination of biological, psychological, and social aspects of posttraumatic nightmares in active duty service members.
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