Dr. Libben is pleased to offer comprehensive and effective psychological treatment designed to improve functioning and quality of life. Dr. Libben draws from a number of psychological perspectives with a primary focus on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). To find out more about CBT from the BC Ministry of Health please click here.
Dr. Libben specializes in treating the following problems:
Anxiety – Anxiety is a broad term referring to several disorders that cause nervousness, fear, apprehension, and worrying. Experiencing occasional anxiety is a normal part of life. However, people with anxiety disorders frequently have intense, excessive and persistent worry and fear about everyday situations. These feelings of anxiety and panic interfere with daily activities, are difficult to control, are disproportionate to the actual danger. Individuals may avoid certain locations or situations to prevent these symptoms. Examples of anxiety disorders include generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, specific phobias and separation anxiety disorder. Research has demonstrated that CBT is one of the most effective treatments for anxiety. Dr. Libben uses specialized CBT interventions depending on the specific sub-types of anxiety. To read more about anxiety sub-types please click here.
Depression – Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness, hopelessness and loss of interest. Also called major depressive disorder or clinical depression, it affects how you feel, think and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems. You may have trouble doing normal day-to-day activities, and sometimes you may feel as if life isn’t worth living. Depression differs from “the blues” or “feeling down” when it begins to interfere with everyday activities such as work and school and impacts your personal relationships. Dr. Libben uses a combination of cognitive behavioural and interpersonal therapy to help alleviate symptoms of depression. To find out more about depression from the Mood Disorders Society of Canada please click here.
Eating Disorders – Eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge-eating disorder (and their variants) are characterized by a serious disturbances in eating behaviour, body image and weight regulation. They are associated with a wide range of adverse psychological, physical, and social consequences. A person with an eating disorder may start out just eating smaller or larger amounts of food, but at some point, their urge to eat less or more spirals out of control. Severe distress or concern about body weight or shape, or extreme efforts to manage weight or food intake, also may characterize an eating disorder. Eating disorder treatment depends on the particular disorder and symptoms. Dr. Libben will typically combine psychological treatment with nutritional education and will collaborate with your family doctor for medical monitoring. To find out more about eating disorders from the National Institute of Mental Health please click here.
Obesity and Weight Loss – Obesity is a serious health problem that affects millions of people worldwide. Being overweight or obese can lead to many health problems. These include heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, obstructive sleep apnoea and arthritis. Dr. Libben uses a combination motivational and CBT techniques to help support lifestyle changes leading to weight-loss and ultimately weight maintenance. Specific evidence-based strategies are applied to modify clients’ thinking and behaviour so they can make permanent changes in their eating.
Stress Management – Stress is a natural, physiological response that involves interactions between our mind, body, and environment. Stress is not inherently bad, we need a certain, optimal level of stress in order to remain alert and maintain performance. Problems occur when we experience too much stress. We overtax both our physical and cognitive resources. Chronic, high levels of stress have been associated with various serious physical and psychological difficulties including insomnia, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, obesity, depression, and anxiety disorders. Using CBT and Mindfulness techniques, Dr. Libben helps her clients develop a strategic plan to help better manage their stress. Such a plan will involve interventions to modify stress-producing thoughts and improve coping capabilities.
Post-Concussion Syndrome and Traumatic Brain Injury – Post-concussion syndrome (PCS) is a complex disorder characterized by various symptoms (e.g., headaches, dizziness, memory impairment etc.) that last weeks to months after injury. Concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury, usually occurring after a blow to the head. Loss of consciousness isn’t required for a diagnosis of concussion or post-concussion syndrome. In fact, the risk of post-concussion syndrome doesn’t appear to be associated with the severity of the initial injury. Both PCS and traumatic brain injury can be characterized by pain, impaired functioning and cognitive difficulties. Dr. Libben’s training in both clinical- and neuro-psychology allows her to provide specialized and comprehensive treatment to clients who have suffered a brain injury. Dr. Libben works with her patients to provide psychoeducation regarding brain injury, psychological interventions for any associated problems such as anxiety and/or depression, as well as cognitive rehabilitation techniques to help improve functioning. To find out more about PCS from the National Institute of Mental Health click here. For more resources on traumatic brain injury from the Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation please click here.
Return to Work Planning – Dr. Libben has worked extensively with insurance providers in the Kelowna area to develop specialized return to work programs for clients who are currently on medical leave due to psychological difficulties. She develops collaborative treatment plans that rely on empirically-based intervention techniques to address underlying psychological issues. Her focus is on providing clients with the motivation and confidence to make a successful return to the workplace while optimizing long-term functional outcome.