Free presentations Feb. 6 about psychological effects of unemployment

January 14, 2010 —

Iowa Psychiatric Society teams up with Des Moines University,
Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center to offer help

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The current economy is causing a ripple effect of symptoms. Some of those symptoms are emotional or psychological and often take a back seat to seemingly more pressing needs. This can make a bad situation worse.

“Being unemployed causes many challenges people are not prepared for,” explained J. Jeffrey Means, M.Div., Ph.D., associate professor and chair of the Des Moines University behavioral medicine department. “It can wear down the psychological and emotional resources of individuals and families in subtle and not so subtle ways.”

Considering the great need, the Iowa Psychiatric Society decided to team up with Des Moines University (DMU) and the Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center in offering a day of programming to assist those in the metro dealing with these topics.

On Saturday, February 6, from 9 a.m. until noon, the public is invited to hear a series of free presentations on the psychological effects of unemployment. All sessions will be held in the DMU Student Education Center auditorium, 3300 Grand Avenue. Parking is also free. Registration is at 8:30 a.m.

The first session, “Recognizing and Managing Symptoms of Emotional Distress,” will be presented by Douglas F. Steenblock, M.D., a psychiatrist with the Iowa Psychiatric Society.

The second session, “How Unemployment Affects the Ways We Think About Ourselves,” will be offered by DMU’s Dr. Means.

The final session of the day, “Helping Children Cope with the Stresses of Unemployment,” will be presented by Kelli Hill-Hunt, Ph.D., a child psychologist at the Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center.

Each presenter will also offer question and answer time after their presentation. For more information on the sessions, call 515.271.1627.


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Des Moines University (DMU) is the only private medical school in Iowa, offering graduate-level, professional degree programs in osteopathic medicine, podiatric medicine, physical therapy, physician assistant studies, biomedical sciences, anatomy, health care administration and public health. Founded in 1898, the institution offers superior academics in a collaborative environment. DMU students' pass rate on national examinations and board certifications is consistently higher than the national average and the rates at similar institutions.


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