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Here at Scottsville Counseling Center, we believe in celebrating neurological differences!

All brains have the same function - to operate the body.  Yet no two brains operate the same.  Each person has a unique pattern of connectivity that makes their thinking uniquely their own. “Neurodiversity” speaks to the variation in neurological functioning within the human race.  It begins with understanding that not every brain works the same way, and that’s ok!


Common Areas of Neurodiversity

Neurodiversity can include differences in a wide range of intrapersonal and interpersonal patterns. The impacted dimensions can include

  • Sensory Input: heightened or reduced sensitivity to sounds, textures, sights, scents, and tastes
  • Emotional Experiences: more intense feelings or little experience of emotions, often leading to overwhelm or challenges understanding other’s emotional experiences
  • Cognitive Functions:  differences in attention regulation, working memory, abstract thinking, and learning styles
  • Behaviors: potentially rigid, repetitive, or self-soothing actions
  • Communication Strategies: difficulty with “normal” social rules; differences in eye contact, quietness or oversharing, notable directness, 


Acknowledging the challenges

Unfortunately, society has not yet figured out how to fully appreciate neurological differences nor offer a variety of approaches to work through our environments. 

In environments built for the dominant brain-style, neurodiverse people can experience numerous challenges that make day-to-day functioning difficult. These challenges include:

    • Self-soothing through stereotypic behavior (such as banging your head against a pillow or wall)
    • Compulsive and obsessive play patterns
    • Difficulty with expressive speech
    • Inattention and inability to follow directions
    • Responding to questions seemingly at random (using “free association”)
    • Being hyperactive
    • Sensory processing challenges (such as tactile defensiveness in response to textures and experiences)
    • Overstimulation caused by your environment
    • Difficulty with transitions and changes
    • Difficulty fitting into societal expectations
    • Burnout from trying to adapt and mask



Our approach to supporting neurodiverse clients begins with respect for differences, recognition of strengths, and clarifying individual goals to thrive rather than just masking better. We can work with people to build self-awareness, attention sustaining strategies, self-regulation abilities, social skills, and time management tools. However, we ultimately want to help individuals grow in self-acceptance and implement a lifestyle that works with their brain rather than against it.


Supplemental Support

Many teens and adults share co-occurring mental health challenges influenced by their neurodiversity. Common struggles include:

    • Anxiety
    • Depression
    • Self-esteem
    • Forming and keeping relationships
    • Coping with sensory issues
    • Bullying
    • Choosing a career
    • Accepting changes
    • Feelings of disconnection

For these situations, standard tools and treatments might not work quite as well. We honor the client as the expert on themselves and work collaboratively to figure out the approaches or adjustments needed to maximize the effectiveness of the options available. 

Benefits of Therapy

Therapy can benefit individuals seeking support with personal challenges or couples/families learning how to adapt. For individuals, we will likely explore mental and emotional needs, social functioning, career or academic styles, nutritional and physical wellness supports. Once we have identified the priorities, we can pull from a range of research and counseling models to tailor sessions. For couples and families, we often share further information on neurodiversity and work to improve communication as ways to build understanding. With greater understanding and acceptance, we can begin to rework couple or family dynamics to enhance connectedness and teamwork. Parents may also learn approaches that promote healthy brain development. 

There’s still much to learn, but we’re actively expanding our understanding. For more information and/or to schedule, please contact us at (270) 943-7818 or [email protected].

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