This chapter explores a range of topics related to obesity, including its prevalence, medical aspects, and associated complications. Other relevant areas include the psychosocial factors pertaining to societal attitudes and individual mental health issues, vocational implications concerning work/wage discrimination, Social Security regulations, and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protections. The chapter also discusses the implications for rehabilitation counselors regarding vocational and mental health counseling. The implications of working with persons who are obese or overweight may be broken down into mental health counseling and/or vocational counseling. Obesity and related medical complications have soared to the forefront of medical conditions that lead to premature death, discrimination in employment, compromised quality of life, and negative psychosocial implications. Counselors who are aware of the medical, psychosocial, and vocational implications of obesity can assist clients in a variety of ways, keeping Olkin’s (1999) recommendations in mind regarding disability-affirmative therapy.
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The specialization of forensic expert testimony in mental health has traditionally been precluded for counselors and dominated primarily by psychologists and psychiatrists. This chapter focuses on the applicable laws related to providing expert testimony and their impact on how counselors must prepare and present their findings in court. It outlines legal definitions and differences in deposing or discovery testimony versus trial testimony. Knowing the order and relevant issues involved at each procedural step becomes important regarding testimony preparation. A practical look at the specific skills counselors should have in order to effectively work in the forensic field is discussed next as well as specific strategies in preparing for and testifying in a courtroom. The growing need for forensic mental health evaluators plays a significant role in scientifically and methodologically providing the court with valuable knowledge in helping to render more informed decisions.
The social justice counselor (SJC) is essentially a new breed of contemporary counselor who no longer works with blinders on regarding a narrowed vision of counseling that focuses on treating a client’s symptoms while ignoring any external contributing factors of client distress. This chapter describes social justice counseling, its emphasis, why it is needed, and why all counseling disciplines should stay abreast of the topic, its counseling strategies, and the premise as to why social justice needs to be considered in counseling. Social psychologists and sociologists have long studied the psychological ramifications of inequality regarding the reciprocal effect of individuals’ interactions with their environment. The chapter explores the economic, health, and psychosocial ramifications of inequality and oppression to provide counselors with insights regarding the worldview and daily lives of the poor and oppressed in American society.
This chapter explores the impact that societal attitudes can have on persons with disabilities, both psychologically and socially. Affect, perceived self- esteem, and self- concept are largely influenced not only internally by our own thoughts and actions but also by input from our environment regarding how we perceive what others think of us and how we are treated by others. It focuses generally on empirical and conceptual studies pertaining to the views or perspectives of specific occupational and special interest groups. Stubbins (1991) advised the importance for rehabilitation psychologists and other counseling professionals to gain an understanding of or insight into the motivations, perspectives, or paradigms with which other groups view, treat, and interact with persons with disabilities. These insights provide rehabilitation professionals with relevant others’ perspectives as to how to better understand and work with these groups to facilitate better care for clients with disabilities.
This book deals with a number of issues and strategies for counseling people with disabilities. It allows counselors and other related health professionals to learn from the writings of 16 people with disabilities across North America. The book provides information on how other professional disciplines perceive and are trained to view disability. It discusses the medical and psychosocial aspects of caregiving in the country and highlights some of the most difficult decisions individuals and families may have to make in this process. The book is organized into four parts containing sixteen chapters. Part I explores disability from a sociological perspective. The topics covered are: the history of how people with disabilities have been viewed and treated in society; attitude formation, societal attitudes, and myths about disabilities; culturally different issues and attitudes toward disability; and attitudes toward disability by specific special interest and occupational groups. Part II focuses on the psychology of disability surrounding the individual and his or her family. The topics address: theories of adjustment to disability by the individual; family adaptation across cultures toward a loved one who is disabled; sexuality and disability; and the psychosocial world of the injured worker. Part III addresses pertinent topics concerning psychosocial issues of disability. The topics include: disability and quality of life over the life span; implications of social support and caregiving of loved ones with a disability; and thriving versus succumbing to disability: psychosocial factors and positive psychology. Part IV addresses counseling strategies and insights for working with persons with disabilities. The topics discuss: which counseling theories and techniques work best with different disability populations and why; social justice, oppression, and disability; counseling families in the community; ethical responsibilities in working with persons with disabilities and our duty to educate; and basic dos and don’ts in counseling persons with disabilities.
This book brings to life the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF; World Health Organization, 2001) for rehabilitation counselors. The book presents contemporary information that can be used to educate, guide practice, and provide the foundation for emerging research related to the psychosocial aspects of disability and chronic disease. It provides a powerful and informative resource for students, practitioners, and scholars in developing and reinforcing rehabilitation counseling principles that guide rehabilitation counseling education, practice, and research. The book is organized into five major parts containing 30 chapters. Part I presents the historical perspectives on illness and disability. Part II offers insights into the personal impact of illness and disability on individuals by looking closely at several unique psychosocial life experiences. It discusses various theories of adaptation to disability, the unique experiences faced by women with disabilities, gender differences regarding sexuality, multicultural and family perspectives of disability, and quality of life (QOL) issues for those with disabilities. Part III addresses issues such as involvement, support, and coping of family members (parents, children, spouses, and partners) which includes family caregiving and counseling, to promote optimal medical, physical, mental, emotional, and psychological functioning of the person with a disability. Part IV reflects the growing need for diagnostic, treatment, and preventive interventions, and the coordination of important resources to help persons with chronic illnesses and disabilities achieve optimal levels of independent functioning. It delves on substance use disorders, trauma-related mental health problems among combat veterans, and assistive technology. The final part addresses several contemporary issues faced by persons with chronic illness and disabilities (CIDs) that are relevant to counselors and practice. It discusses newer challenges that these individuals face, including obesity, poor nutrition, poverty, suicide, threat of terrorism, and depression, all of which are on the rise in the United States.