Binge Drinking

As your teenagers are taking their “much deserved” break this summer, don’t forget the importance of structure. Most teenagers will say that summer is time to relax and take a break from working so hard on school all year! However the lack of participation in activities and increase in free time can lead to a slump in completing responsibilities. It is also important to be aware of what boredom can result in. Unfortunately some teens replace boredom with risky behaviors. While this is not true for all teens, the likelihood may by higher for some than others. Risky behaviors are sometimes rewarded by our brain biologically because the feel good neurotransmitters such as dopamine and norepinephrine flood the brain and leading the person to want to complete the exciting activity again. Teens are not exempt from this occurrance. It is important to fill your teens time daily with projects and expectations to help avoid participation in these risky activities as well as the negative consequences that may come following.

Attached is a link to a publication by SAMSHA about rates of teen binge drinking. Check it out!


Employee Profile: Norma J. Barnes


Norma has been with Star Point Counseling for about a year. She has added much experience and knowledge to our team. Here is a little bit about Norma…

Norma recieved a Master’s Degree from Nova Southeastern University and has been in the counseling field for over 15 years. Norma is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, a Certified Addictions Professional and a Certified Employee Assistance Professional.

Norma’s experience includes working with individuals, couples, gay and lesbian, blended families, family counseling, multicultural dynamics, women’s issues, grief and loss, personal growth, addiction, ACOA, depression, anxiety, stress, workplace issues, marriage counseling, separation and divorce, and phase of life challenges.

Norma is available for appointments on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at our Brandon location. She takes most major insurances as well. If you would like to make an appointment with Norma, or recieve a free phone consultation call Star Point Counseling of Tampa at 813-244-1251.

Happy Birthday to Clarissa!!!

Star Point Counseling would like to extend a warm and happy birthday wish to co-founder and Clinical Director, Clarissa Crystal-Belle. Clarissa is a licensed mental health counselor and qualified supervisor in the state of Florida. She has been providing therapy in the area for many years, and her hard work has led to the opening of two sites in Brandon and Tampa, Florida. We love Clarissa and we wish her many more years of success in her business and an infinite number of happy days to come!!!

Children and Discipline Pt. 2

There are a couple definitions of the word “discipline” that pertain to this discussion. Number 1 on the list, according to Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary, is “punishment.” Number 2 on the same list is, “instruction.” The first definition is exactly the frame of mind that most people have when it comes to disciplining children. But, what if we took the second definition to be the most accurate and most effective in promoting positive behaviors in children at home, in the classroom, and amongst others?
Recent research suggests that positive discipline has very promising results. Dr. Judy McVittie has put together a compilation of research supporting this notion. She explains that children are more likely to have more positive and well received behaviors when their parents have a more authoritative parenting style. This means that the parent displays a combination of understanding and empathy, but still remain firm and demanding when needed. This type of parenting is often incentive based as opposed to fear based (punishment oriented). Elizabeth Gershoff, PhD., from the National Center for Children in Poverty at Columbia University agrees with Dr. McVittie and suggests that corporal punishment may actually have many more negative than positive effects. In a 62 year long study Gershoff concluded that although immediate compliance is experienced after corporal punishment, negative long term effects such as antisocial behavior, and aggression can result causing problems for children through adulthood. In addition, punishment may encourage kids to obey while the parents are present, but what happens when they are not? Children may be less likely to regulate their behaviors based on their own intrinsic ideas of right and wrong, and good and bad, as well as dangerous and safe.
So then, is the “rod” considered a tool that is used to physically punish our children into submission? Or rather, is it to be used just as the shepherd does to nudge and guide and instruct, by teaching right and wrong? You be the judge.

For more information on the studies and information shared please visit these websites
And don’t forget to visit our website!