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Patients & Families

Patients & Families

Every year, approximately 450 families from over 40 states and other countries bring their adolescents to Meridell Achievement Center. Throughout our years of providing comprehensive treatment, we have come to identify similarities between the patients we treat.

Most of our patients have a history of treatment failure. Many have been patients at psychiatric hospitals, residential therapeutic schools, wilderness programs or a residential, partial hospital or intensive outpatient program. Purposeful misbehavior (behavioral) is very different from irritable behavior (neurobehavior). The former is planned and controlled while the latter is impulsive and explosive.

About Our Patients

Multiple Diagnoses

The adolescents most appropriate for our programs typically have multiple diagnoses that may include any of the following:

  • Bipolar disorder
  • Depression
  • Anxiety disorder
  • Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD)
  • Conduct disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Intermittent explosive disorder
  • Cerebral dysrhythmia
  • Impulse control disorder
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Personality disorder traits
  • Tourette syndrome
  • Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder (DMDD)
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • High-end autism spectrum disorders
  • Learning disorders

Common Histories

  • Treatment failure in hospitals and outpatient programs
  • School truancy and expulsion
  • Probation
  • Emotional and behavioral problems
  • Impulsive or explosive aggression
  • Attention, memory or learning problems

Common Maladaptive Behaviors

  • Self-injury
  • Suicide attempts
  • Eating disorders
  • School difficulties and truancy
  • Parent-child conflicts
  • Peer conflicts
  • Substance use
  • Stealing
  • Running away
  • Isolation
  • Emotional detachment
  • Avoidant behaviors
  • Physical and verbal aggression
  • Poor decision making
  • Poor impulse control

Neurologically-Based Symptoms

  • Poor planning skills
  • Impulsivity
  • Attention and memory deficits
  • Pathological aggression (violent behavior without provocation or gain)
  • Repetitive rage behavior
  • Abnormal laboratory tests (CT, MRI, EEG)
  • Abnormal neuropsychological tests
  • History of neurological disease (in-utero poisoning, head injury, high risk birth, seizures, etc.)

Key Behaviors

  • Manipulation: relentlessly avoiding responsibilities or seeking unacceptable pursuits
  • Social anxiety and isolation: inability to function successfully at home or school
  • High risk: threatening or carrying out self-harm or harm to others
  • Impulsive aggression: acting out suddenly and unpredictably with no plan in mind

Give Us A Call

Call Meridell Achievement Center at 512-528-2100 or 800-366-8656 to ask questions or make a referral. We proudly accept TRICARE® and most major insurance coverages.