YDC Stories: How Treatment Can Make Significant Differences in Patients’ Lives

Important note: Patient names and any other potentially identity-revealing information has been changed.

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Referred by his school, Javier needed ways to cope and concentrate in an overwhelming environment.

A shy yet vibrant 6-year-old who was diagnosed with both autism spectrum disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Javier was referred to the Youth Development Clinic due to behavioral concerns at school.

News of Javier’s in-school difficulties came as a surprise to his mother, who reported that at home and in other settings, he was doing quite well and was, in fact, making strides. But the school environment was different – and it was difficult for Javier, which is not uncommon for children who experience challenges like his. They’re often overstimulated in school and have weaknesses in terms of emotional regulation and social skills (only adding to the stress of it all).

At the clinic, one of our clinicians used a patient and structured behavior modification approach with Javier, helping him gain improved coping skills, attention, and concentration. He was also able to increasingly verbally express his emotions. Though a quiet child in general, his communicativeness increased throughout his time at YDC. He was able to meet all of the established treatment goals and significantly decrease instances of behavioral issues in school.


Brittany worked hard to heal and gain self-confidence during her time at YDC.

After being discharged from a local medical center due to severe symptoms of anxiety, depression, and thoughts of suicide, Brittany – in her teens – was referred for therapy with our experienced clinicians. One such clinician working with Brittany identified two major treatment goals: 1) decrease frequency and intensity of feelings of sadness and anxiety to no more than once per week, and 2) develop a more positive view of the self by reducing feelings of unworthiness and replacing them with beliefs that were more realistic and positive.

By the end of her treatment, Brittany displayed significant improvement in both areas, demonstrating sincere feelings of self-satisfaction and an ability to engage in positive peer relationships – something she did not feel worthy of just a short time before. She reported experiencing feelings of despair and anxiety far less often, in large part due to techniques like positive self-talk, mindfulness, and dialectical behavior therapy techniques, which she was able to apply consistently in order to stay healthy. By the end of her treatment at YDC, she no longer reported suicidal thoughts and was much better equipped to manage typical stressors, having built sustainable social supports.  


Learn more about our in-clinic, outpatient services in Newark, NJ.