I went into psychology because I am gratified by teaching people one-on-one how to create change in their life. When I see a client in treatment, I am essentially trying to teach them how to be their own therapist.
I have been treating people with OCD, OC-spectrum disorders, and anxiety for over 13 years.
I teach methods, so people have a playbook to eventually deal with their OCD, anxiety, and other life challenges on their own, outside of therapy. It is so rewarding to hear clients say, “____ happened, and I knew you would say _____” – it means that they are getting well-versed in CBT approaches. When someone can reliably figure out the relevant CBT approach and execute it in the moment, they are in a really good position to create change for themselves.
After majoring in psychology at St. Mary’s College of Maryland, I graduated and went on to complete a two-year predoctoral research fellowship on depression at the Clinical Psychobiology Branch of the National Institute of Mental Health. From there I continued my training at the University of South Dakota, where I earned my Ph.D. in clinical psychology.
Going to a treatment-focused graduate program, I was able to develop expertise in providing comprehensive clinical care to people with co-occurring issues, such as anxiety and substance use, OCD and ADHD, or chronic illness and sleep problems.
On internship in Nebraska, I was able to work with clients at a state psychiatric hospital, a community mental health center, and a residential setting. This was the start of my career working on interdisciplinary treatment teams, and today I continue to coordinate care with clients’ psychiatrists, educators, and other treatment providers.
I joined the research team at the Maryland Center for Anxiety Disorders after internship, working on clinical research and treatment of social anxiety in children, teens, and adults. I was able to treat university students, as well as members of the local community under the direction of Dr. Deborah Beidel. For several years, I worked as the Director of Assessment at the Centers for Behavioral Health, providing consultation and treatment to adults with a range of behavioral problems in both clinical trials, inpatient, and outpatient settings. Most recently, I worked for over a decade at the Behavior Therapy Center of Greater Washington, providing treatment to people with a variety of anxiety disorders and OCD. I received specialized training in comprehensive behavioral treatment of hair pulling and skin picking behavior in 2013 through the Professional Training Institute of the TLC Foundation for Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors. Later, I also participated as a clinician in a treatment study of the comprehensive behavioral (ComB) treatment of BFRB’s. Truly, working with people on all these issues in therapy is my dream job.
I grew up in Montgomery County, Maryland, but immigrated from India as a child. I live in Montgomery County with my family. In my spare time, I am slowly learning Spanish, experimenting with food, and writing old-fashioned letters. I relish reading in all forms!