You have Options for Medicaid Treatment

This past year, local news has covered the evolving status of Valley Mental Health and its Medicaid-based services for those in our community with mental health issues. For over 20 years, Valley Mental Health was the model of mental health care and widely recognized for its innovative programming, its staff and its model of client care. More recently, the news about Valley Mental Health has centered on the various changes with a more negative portrayal. Being a former employee, I know personally that many individuals and their families have benefitted from the support and services provided by Valley Mental Health and I hope this history will not be ignored. Change is inevitable in all things and while this can raise anxiety, change can also yield positive results. During this time of change, I would hope that professionals in the community would continue collaboration rather than competition and remain focused on how best to serve clients and their families. If you are a Medicaid consumer and you need mental health counseling, there are resources available in Salt Lake County in addition to those still being provided by Valley Mental Health, some of which are listed on the OptumHealth website or can be accessed by calling the phone number on your Medicaid card. Let’s work together for good mental health.

Mark A. Weisbender, LCSW
Silverado Counseling Services, LLC


(this comment was posted on the City Weekly website in response to an article posted 11/07/12 “Valley Mental Health program freezes access to new Optum client”)

Start of the Holiday Season

The approaching holiday season soon kicks-off with Thanksgiving. The next few months bring the potential for added stress of family obligations, added expenses, cultural and social expectations as well as many wonderful tempting treats that can make counting calories a challenging task. However, this was probably not the intent when seasonal holidays were created.

In the field of psychology, “Stress is Stress”. Whether it is a welcomed stress (such as a wedding or job promotion) or a dreaded stress (such as losses) it creates the same stress response. Likewise, holidays can be stressful even if we look forward to them so the issue of stress management is important.

Here are a few ways that you might better manage the holiday stress and increase enjoyment:

  • Set a firm budget. If you do not have the money to do something for everyone on your list consider something homemade or a simple handwritten letter with photos describing how that person is meaningful in your life.
  • When you are considering budgeting, be sure to include ways to “budget” calories and don’t neglect your exercise routine.
  • Plan your giving, whether it is gifts or time. Consider your own needs and the needs of those close to you first, then allocate your time and resources as you choose to make your experience enjoyable.
  • Be sure that you teach your children the meaning that YOU want them to associate with the holidays, whether it is a religious component or a spiritual one (such as thankfulness or gratitude). Help your family avoid getting caught-up in the commercial definitions of the holidays, believe me, they will understand if the luxury car with a large bow is not in the driveway. Consider volunteering with your children during the holidays to teach giving. Consider volunteering for one of the agencies that provide free meals or one of the care centers for the elderly.

Regardless of your religious, cultural or personal beliefs for the holidays, find a way to make them meaningful and centered on the meaning that you and your loved ones want them to be.

Welcome to our Blog

Welcome to the Silverado Counseling blog. We hope that you will find our topics both timely and helpful. Silverado Counseling Services advocates for the families in our community and we strive to raise awareness of issues affecting those families. We feel that knowledge and education can help you to be a better consumer and helps us to be a better provider. We welcome your feedback, requests or recommendations on any of the postings on our blog. Enjoy!