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Providing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in NYC for Over 25 years
March 2016
Dr. Robert Reiner reviewing biofeedback from a patient's brain.

Welcome to the Behavioral Associates Newsletter

 Leaders in Mental Health Technology
By: Dr. Robert Reiner, Ph.D - Executive Director

1988, the year I opened Behavioral Associates on Manhattan's Upper East Side was also the first year CD's out-sold vinyl records. Now vinyl records are collectors items and CD's have become obsolete. In just under 30 years, advancements in technology have changed the world in unforeseen ways. For people who lived  through this period of time, such rapid and extreme change could be overwhelming. On the contrary, keeping up with technology has always been a driving force for me and a major influence in my work. Immersing myself in a wireless world continues to allow me to provide patients with unique and innovative approaches towards achieving mental health.

While my practice still goes by its original name, resides in the same location on east 90th Street, and continues as a center specializing in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), we have gone through many changes throughout the years.  I am proud to say we have evolved into one of the largest and most technologically advanced group practices in New York City.  As innovators in our field, we don’t get deterred by obstacles but see them as opportunities to learn and grow.        
An extremely effective tool in CBT, especially in the treatment of anxiety and phobias, is exposure therapy.  The idea is that through repeat exposure to the underlying fear it is possible to learn strategies for managing your symptoms.  Rather than climbing on the kitchen table in a state of panic when you see a mouse, if you practice behaving calmly in this situation, eventually this will be your natural reaction.  Relaxation techniques, such as controlled abdominal breathing can help to alter the way you react to situations that have been anxiety provoking in the past.

Although exposure therapy has enjoyed great results, it presents its own obstacles. If your fear is flying, it would be both costly and unrealistic to have your doctor accompany you on your travels. In the past it was often necessary for the patient to visualize the activity while practicing the learned autonomic response. Virtual reality therapy (in which virtual reality glasses worn by the patient provide sound and image mirroring the actual experience) combined with biofeedback (techniques that teach patients to control their autonomic responses) allows patients to learn strategies to manage their fears before even setting foot outside of the therapist’s office.  This is just one example of how our commitment to technology allows us to provide increasingly effective treatment options for our patients.

As part of our newsletter we encourage you to present us with any mental health related questions, concerns or even suggestions for a future topic. Click here to promptly receive a response from a member of the professional staff at Behavioral Associates. This is a service we are very excited to be launching along with our newsletter. In addition to knowledge and understanding as a natural first step towards improved mental health, we look forward to gaining valuable insight by recognizing the questions and concerns of our community.

Dr. Robert Reiner, Ph.D, BCN, BCB
Executive Director of Behavioral Associates

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