Dr. Dickman has a special interest, and specialized training, in health care psychology. This is a relatively new specialty in the field of psychology. Health care psychologists have specialized education and experience for helping people with medical problems that have some sort of psychological, behavioral, alcohol/drug abuse or dependency, or medical factors – or a combination of some of these factors.
Health care psychologists have the following specialized skills:
- understanding of the relationships between emotional, cognitive/thinking, behavioral, social and biological/medical factors that contribute to both medical problems and improved health.
- resources to help people with complex medical and mental health problems make changes to help them feel and do better.
- resources to help people at risk for developing chronic and severe medical problems take better care of themselves, and to reduce their risk for developing these medical conditions.
- helping people develop, and maintain, healthy lifestyles.
Here are some typical examples of patients who may benefit from help from a health care psychologist, coordinated with primary medical care services:
- A person with cardiac disease, has been advised to stop smoking and lose weight, but has been unable to make signficant progress on these behavioral changes and is at risk for of a cardiac event.
- A person with diabetes, has been advised to stick to a diet, lose weight and establish a regular exercise program, but has been unable to make significant progress on these behavioral changes and is at risk for worsening complications from diabetes.
- A person who is seriously overweight, has been advised to change their diet and increase their activity level, but has not lost enough weight to reduce their health risk factors.
- A person with a significant medical condition that is treatable with medication, but who has been unable to establish a system for regularly taking their medication.
Dr. Dickman is committed to being informed about current health care psychology research, and using this information to develop treatment plans to help the people whom we serve. He are also is committed to working closely with your medical professionals, especially your primary medical provider, and any medical specialists involved in your care, with your authorization. This is called integrated health care, or interprofessional health care, and has been shown to improve treatment outcomes and reduced medical expenses for people with complex and challenging health problems.
One of Dr. Dickman’s special interests is helping people who are deaf or hard of hearing.
If you would like to discuss your health care needs, you are welcome to call Dr. Dickman.