Addiction, Trauma Experts Featured at Elements Behavioral Health Symposium

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On April 25, Elements Behavioral Health will host a symposium in Fort Lauderdale exploring the relationship of complex trauma to intimacy, addictions and mood disorders. The esteemed panel of speakers includes international speaker, author and clinician Robert Weiss, LCSW, CSAT-S, award-winning author, trainer, psychologist and trauma specialist Christine Courtois, PhD, ABPP, and board-certified addiction psychiatrist and award-winning psychotherapist Christopher La Tourette La Riche, MD.

Fort Lauderdale, FL (PRWEB) April 2, 2014 – On April 25, three renowned addiction and trauma experts will speak at an intermediate-to-advanced clinical training for therapists and counselors hosted by Elements Behavioral Health and produced by the Ben Franklin Institute. Themed “The Relationship of Complex Trauma to Adult Intimacy, Addictions and Mood Disorders,” the symposium will be held at the Sheraton Suites Cypress Creek in Fort Lauderdale. The esteemed panel of speakers includes:

  • Author, clinician, founder of the Sexual Recovery Institute, and senior vice president of clinical development for Elements Behavioral Health Robert Weiss, LCSW, CSAT-S;
  • Internationally recognized author and trauma specialist, psychologist Christine Courtois, PhD, ABPP; and
  • Board-certified psychiatrist and addiction psychiatrist and award-winning psychotherapist Christopher La Tourette La Riche, MD.

Robert Weiss, who has developed the first dedicated treatment centers for women’s intimacy and sexual disorders in the U.S. as well as the highly successful SAID program for men at Promises Malibu, the Center for Relationship and Sexual Recovery at The Ranch and The Sexual Recovery Institute in Los Angeles, will present “Closer Together, Further Apart: The Effect of Digital Technology on Relationships, Addiction and Parenting” from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Drawing from his recently released book by the same title, co-authored with Jennifer Schneider, MD, Mr. Weiss’ presentation will provide a thought-provoking look at the ways digital technology affects clinical practice and real-world social engagement among individuals, couples and families.

“Digital technology, particularly the Internet, has had a profound impact on interpersonal relationships, mental health, and addictive online behaviors surrounding sex, love, gambling, gaming and similar Internet addictions,” said Mr. Weiss. “Learning about how these technological advances affect individuals, families and communities, in both positive and negative ways, will help clinicians more effectively address the modern-day challenges facing their patients.”

Dr. Courtois, national clinical trauma consultant for Promises Treatment Centers, will present “Treatment of Complex Trauma: A Sequenced Relationship Based Approach,” from 10:45 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. This workshop begins with a discussion of complex trauma and delves into Dr. Courtois’ three-phase approach to trauma treatment and the tasks associated with each phase.

“The treatment of complex trauma presents many challenges: the therapeutic relationship, co-occurrence with other issues including addictions, the sequence of treatment, and the unique spiritual issues that directly arise from the trauma,” said Dr. Courtois. “Through this workshop, my hope is that participants will come away with an overview of treatment approaches for complex trauma, including those with an evidence base, and the importance of treating both mind-body reactions to posttraumatic stress.”

From 1:30 to 3 p.m., Dr. La Riche will present “Mood Disorders & Addiction: New Tools for the Clinician.” The workshop presents key information to keep clinicians current on integrated, evidence-based treatment for common mood disorders in patients with substance abuse.

“Depressed men are three times more likely to suffer from alcoholism and women are four times more likely,” said Dr. La Riche. “Chances are high your clinical setting will present you with co-occurring mood disorders and addiction. Are you prepared to effectively treat both concurrently so that your patients have the best chance for recovery?”

From 3:15 to 4:45 p.m., Dr. La Riche and Dr. Courtois will discuss complex case studies and clinical solutions, with a question-and-answer period moderated by Robert Weiss, LCSW, CSAT-S.

Symposium attendees may earn up to seven continuing education credits. For an agenda or to register for the symposium, visit the Elements Behavioral Health events page or contact Jeanette Lisalda at (866) 825-1104 or

About Robert Weiss

Robert Weiss is widely considered one of the nation’s foremost experts on sex and technology addictions along with the intimacy disorders that often underlie these problems. A media expert to CNN, the Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine, the Oprah Winfrey Network, ESPN, the New York Times, USA Today, NBC News and the Today Show, among others, Mr. Weiss also has provided clinical training and program development for the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. military, and behavioral treatment centers throughout the United States, Europe and Asia.

About Dr. Courtois

Dr. Christine Courtois is a leading authority in the treatment of trauma, having worked in this area for over 30 years. She is a board certified counseling psychologist who has directed the development of practice guidelines for the treatment of complex trauma for three professional organizations and has been appointed to the American Psychological Association’s Guideline Development Panel for post-traumatic stress disorder. Dr. Courtois has written or co-edited eight books on healing from incest, child sexual abuse, complex traumatic stress disorders and other types of trauma, including the soon-to-be-published Spiritually Oriented Treatment for Trauma.

About Dr. La Riche

Dr. Christopher La Tourette La Riche is the medical director of Lucida Treatment Center, a board-certified psychiatrist, board-certified addiction psychiatrist and award-winning psychotherapist. His particular interest is the nexus of early life trauma (child abuse and neglect, early parental separation and loss), neuroendocrine changes and later life depression, anxiety and addictive disorders — as well as the overlap of chronic pain and addiction. He has received multiple awards for outstanding teaching and research, exceptional psychotherapeutic skills and has published book chapters and journal articles on the topics of addiction, the neurobiology of depression and child abuse.

About Elements Behavioral Health

Elements Behavioral Health is a family of behavioral health care programs that includes Promises Treatment Centers, The Ranch, The Recovery Place, Lucida Treatment Center, Clarity Way, Journey Healing Centers, the Sexual Recovery Institute and Right Step. Elements offers comprehensive, innovative treatment for substance abuse, sexual addiction, trauma, eating disorders and other mental health disorders. We are committed to delivering clinically sophisticated treatment that promotes permanent lifestyle change, not only for the patient but for the entire family system. For more information about Elements Behavioral Health, visit

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