Are you a Mental Health Professional who has a client with Excoriation Disorder, Trichotillomania, or other Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors (BFRBs)? Have you exhausted your resources in how to effectively treat these clients or are unfamiliar with the approaches needed to help your client? Most professionals in the field of psychology may have expertise or an enriching educational profile but haven’t had the opportunity to focus on treatment of BFRBs. This is no fault of the professional and in fact, most graduate institutes do not teach prospective practitioners about these conditions which makes it a “trial-and-error” method of treatment for them once they are out in the field practicing.
This causes a practitioner to rely on one cookie-cutter approaches for treatment at a time such as CBT, habit-reversal therapy, DBT, and exposure therapy with minimal results. Unfortunately, clients lose trust in the mental health system and lose hope in ever being treated because nothing seems to help them with their skin- picking or hair- pulling urges. Like with any disorder with an inexperienced, ill-trained, and misinformed therapist who uses outdated or ineffective approaches to treatment, it can cause additional damage to a client.
Dr. Charles Mansueto, with over 25 years of clinical experience, devised an approach that has worked effectively with many clients: The ComB Model, which includes the SCAMP Intervention. While this practice may be labelled as Trichotillomania- based due to a lack of clinical representation pre- DSM 5 when it was created, it has also been approved for Excoriation Disorder treatment because of the established relationship between the two although they manifest differently, physically, in behavior. This method also incorporates conventional treatments in a multi- dimensional approach that focuses on the whole person, covering each angle of the person’s life that the disorder affects at once instead of using the approaches listed above in a linear fashion.
The most reliable and trusted resources come from the world’s only funded non-profit organization for BFRBs, The Trichotillomania Learning Center. The literature (books, studies, training) comes mostly from TLC’s Scientific advisory board. Many professionals are hesitant in getting additional training to treat these disorders because they chance being scammed or fear not learning anything but it is worth the minimal time and money to make sure you can give your clients the best chance of recovery: You don’t know what you don’t know.
Suggested reading specifically for practitioners:
Slowly but surely, across the globe practitioners are getting trained through TLC’s Professional Training Institute by attending a 3-day seminar or the easier, most cost-effective, and timely solution, by purchasing the 16- hour DVD training package created by these top professionals. After taking an additional test to show what you’ve learned, you then get to be listed in TLC’s directory of trained professionals which helps sufferers who fear getting treatment (some practitioners do not even believe skin picking is a problem let alone know how to treat it) know where to go to be in a non-judgmental environment while learning the tools to become pick or pull-free. If you are a Canadian provider, you will also be listed on the Canadian BFRB Support Network’s website upon completion of this course. If you are on your way to becoming a mental health provider, you may also choose to use this training program as Continuing Education credits***.
To learn more about Excoriation Disorder, Trichotillomania, and other BFRBs, please visit the professional section on TLC’s website to gain access to pamphlets, pdf files, references to studies, and published articles that these professionals have dedicated their lives to learning about for those of us with a BFRB. Take a peek at what the DVD training program entails and be on your way to becoming one of many providers who BFRB clients can count on as a reliable source for treatment.
Still unsure and want to know more? The Trichotillomania Learning Center is always willing to answer questions and direct you in the right path to make certain you are informed about how to get involved with the professional side of the BFRB community, assist you in furthering your knowledge base about BFRBs, and tell you about current research initiatives. For more information, e-mail info @ trich.org.
*** Please view the bottom of the online training page for a full list of PER CE programs that accept PTI’s training for up to 13 credits.