eNewsletter - March 2023

It’s National Social Work Month! Have you had a chance to thank a social worker yet?

By: Jennifer Hampton, LCSW

According to research, the social work profession was established in the 19th century. Jane Addams was the first female social worker and the first American woman to receive a Nobel Peace Prize in 1931. Her Hull-House was established here in Chicago to offer social services to the community.

Social workers can be found in many settings, including hospitals (10.3%), HR (11.4 %) and outpatient care centers (8.3%). This month, I encourage you to commemorate a social worker. I also encourage you to reflect on the importance of self-care as it relates to the increased demand on all behavioral health specialists.

The World Health Organization reports that 1 in 8 people around the world were living with a mental health disorder in 2019. As the demand for social workers increased, burnout increased as well.  “The Bureau of Labor Statistics noted that social services professionals were reported to have the highest quit rates during the pandemic.” With the rise in quit rates, what are some ways to prevent burnout?

Studies show that first thing to do is be mindful of your reactions and your thoughts during and after providing care. If you find yourself apathetic, then it is time to increase your self-care practices. Some ways to prevent burnout include: set healthy boundaries, leave work at work, have a ritual indicating the end of the work day, talk to someone, and take a day off.

I recently had a realization when I reflected on time with patients. As I was concluding a skills group, a patient asked me, with all the outpouring of work I do, how do I take care of myself? I initially joked that I’m not the best at recharging myself. Yet after laughing, I thought about the importance of taking intentional time to recharge.

It can be difficult at times to practice what I teach patients, and today was a reminder that I too need to practice self-care. I enjoy reading a good book, playing with my sons, and relaxing in a comfy pair of pajamas. I started a gratitude journal that has helped me rekindle my passion for others.

As the demand for mental health professionals has increased, the demand for us to take care of ourselves has increased as well. This month and all year long, I encourage you to intentionally take of yourself.

Linden Oaks New Role Announcement 

Linden Oaks Medical Group is thrilled to welcome a new behavioral and mental health provider, Elizabeth Podlasek.

Elizabeth Podlasek, DNP, PMHNP-BC

Liz Podlasek is board certified as a psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner. She completed her doctorate degree in nursing practice at Rush University College of Nursing. She earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from Resurrection University.

Liz completed her clinical rotations at Lott Behavioral Health, where she worked alongside a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner with the focus on substance use and co-occurring mental health conditions, specializing in ketamine, vivitrol and sublocade treatments. She completed her clinical rotations at Linden Oaks Hospital, where she worked in the outpatient and inpatient treatment settings to support patients with mental health and substance use treatment needs.

Liz’s clinical interests include treating adolescents and adults with co-occurring substance use and mental health diagnoses, as well as patients with eating disorders who are served by Linden Oaks Hospital programs. Her approach to treatment is focused on cognitive and dialectical behavioral therapies, as well as motivational interviewing. She works with adolescents and adults to develop healthy coping strategies for a healthy lifestyle, mind and body.

Finding more support. Liz is accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, call 630-646-8000. If you know someone who would benefit from learning about treatment options related to any mental or behavioral health concern, please encourage them to contact the Linden Oaks Behavioral Health 24/7 Help Line at 630-305-5027 or complete our Assessment Request Form and one of our staff will contact them to assist.