Dr Lizbé Schoeman
+27 (0) 16 932 1509
Definition of "Psychology"
Psychology is the study of the mind and behavior. The discipline embraces all aspects of the human experience — from the functions of the brain to the actions of nations, from child development to care for the aged. In every conceivable setting from scientific research centers to mental healthcare services, "the understanding of behavior" is the enterprise of psychologists (http://www.apa.org/support/about-apa.aspx).
Psychology has become a doctoral-level profession and while it's grounded in science, it is also a diverse discipline with nearly boundless applications in everyday life. Psychologists study both normal and abnormal functioning and treat clients with mental, emotional and behavioral problems. They also study and encourage behaviors that build general wellness and emotional resilience. The link between mind and body as well as the negative impact of stress exceeding people's resources is well-recognized. It can take a toll on physical health where the physical challenges can result in bringing additional stress into people's lives. Psychologists can aid people to become aware and understand how stress impacts their health and lives and which steps they can take in order to stay emotionally balanced and enjoy general well-being. Psychological difficulties and disorders can be treated without psychotropic drugs or in combination with medication depending on various decisive factors.
All psychologists have a duty of confidentiality with regard to all information disclosed during psychological assessment, counselling and/or therapy. Confidentiality is also the corner stone of trust between the psychologist and the client. Dr Schoeman engages in a contract with each client to protect all parties with regard to confidentiality and privacy in terms of the laws governing the psychology profession.
Psychologists are professionally trained to provide a wide range of psychological services in order to treat a variety of mental, emotional and behavioral conditions, disorders, concerns, syndromes and difficulties.
Psychological services may include Assessments for:
Clinical disorders and syndromes, Concentration e.g. Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD), Potential (IQ), Aptitude and Interest, General Well-being, Dyslexia, Personality traits and characteristics, Special exam concessions, Learning problems, Memory problems, Mental retardation, Giftedness, Presence of disorders on the Autism spectrum, e.g. Asperger’s syndrome, School readiness, Secondary school, subject and career choice.
Psychological difficulties may include:
Addictions, Adjustment problems, Acute stress, Anger management and rage issues, Anxiety, Bedwetting, Bipolar disorder, Bullying or harassment, Concentration problems, Conduct disorders, Childhood trauma (sexual and physical abuse and/or neglect), Diagnosis of a life threatening disease, Dealing with Dementia / Alzheimer’s disease (early stages), Delusional disorders, Dissociation, Developmental disorders, Depression, Domestic & family violence, Encopresis, Cluttering, Emotional burnout, Eating disorders (anorexia, bulimia, binge eating), Family problems (parenting, separation, divorce, illness, loss and financial issues), Guilt, Gender and identity issues, Grief and bereavement after the loss of a loved one, Insomnia, Impulse control, IQ testing, Job performance, Occupational problems, Low self esteem, Life transitions and milestones, Marital discord, Moodswings, Motivation, Nightmares, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Personality disorders, Phobias and Fears, Paranoia, Public speaking, Panic Disorder, Pain control, Personal growth, Psychosomatic disorders, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Post stroke or heart surgery or other major surgery adjustment, Relationship problems, Retirement, Retrenchment, Self assertiveness, Social interaction, Suicidality, Separation anxiety, Social anxiety, Substance abuse, Shock reaction, Self harming and self-destructive behaviour, Sexual fulfilment, Sexual orientation, Spiritual growth, Scholastic problems, Stress management, Sexual obsessions, School related problems, Study motivation and learning, Sexual dysfunction, Sleeping disorders, Sport performance, Victim of crime and violence, Working through trauma and Workrelated issues.
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Client diversity and equivalence
Dr Schoeman enjoys working with clients from all nationalities, races and age groups. She has been delivering services in a broad spectrum of settings, including hospitals, clinics, courts, prisons, police forces, schools and workplaces.
Our modern era increasingly brings together ethno-culturally diverse people - individuals, families, communities and nations that have different beliefs, religions, histories and economical status. Careful attention needs to be given to cultural sensitivities and competencies in order to include a variety of aspects, such as ethnic background, gender, age, language preference and fluency, gender preference and religion.
Psychological services need to be accessible and acceptable to meet the unique needs of clients, often requiring highly creative and complex interventions by the psychologist to draw upon all their available internal and external resources. Dr Schoeman also endeavors to take cognizance of and being responsive to ethnic groups' history, cultures and religious beliefs as well as their beliefs on (1) health and illness and (2) indigenous healers, healing methods and traditions. For valid clinical and psychological assessment and interpretation to occur, it is essential that there is linguistic, conceptual, scale and normative equivalence for the clients being tested or assessed. Dr Schoeman ensures equivalence by implementing standardized assessment instruments and applying interpretation with great care to obtain adequate measures of validity and reliability. She values effective communication, transparency and trust to establish ethno-cultural differences in etiological and causal models of psychological health and disorder, the presence of patterns of disorder, standards of normality and treatment alternatives to suit each individual client.
Dr Schoeman also believes that effective communication and collaboration between health professionals concerning their patients, are the keys to clients' successful psychological adaptation and compliance with treatment. She sees continuity of care as crucial for all her clients as the transition from being an outpatient to being an inpatient and having progressed through treatment and therapy to achieve discharge status and having to cope again on the outside world, can be very challenging.
Continuity of care - existing clients and inpatients
Dr Schoeman has been working in multi-disciplinary context with among other, psychiatrists, social workers, psychologists registered in other categories and occupational therapists in the Vaal Triangle rendering the following services:
Diagnoses of presenting personality problems/traits/disorders;
Establishing psychological stressors and the severity thereof;
Investigating psycho-social impairment;
Determining suicide ideation;
Reporting on psychotropic drug reaction;
Guidance/orientation of relatives;
Working through the stigma of attending a psychiatric clinic; and
Transfers to other inpatient units/hospitals where applicable.
As part of the holistic mental health treatment program at Care Cure Clinic Vereeniging, Dr Schoeman conducted group sessions on a weekly basis to inpatients from 2007 - 2017 to:
Improve their prognosis;
Aid them in resolving their crises;
Alleviate cumulative stress;
Broaden their perspective on mental illness;
Educate them about their condition; and
Minimize a potential relapse.
by using inter alia
Different relaxation techniques;
Stress reduction guided imagery;
Ego-strengthening (building up inner strength);
Promotion of inner healing;
Enhancement of health and well-being;
Relieving discomfort and psychosomatic pain symptoms;
Training patients in meditation and self-hypnosis;
Relieving mental, emotional, spiritual and physical tension; and
Taking responsibility for and control over own feelings, emotions, actions and reactions.