Joseph Sciarretta, LCSW
My approach is warm, honest, and empathetic. I pull from a variety of reputable methods that have been shown to facilitate meaningful change.
When I tell people how I found my path to become a therapist, I usually say that “I started by accident, but stayed on purpose.”
As an undergraduate student at The College of New Jersey, I was required by my Psychology major coursework to find hands-on experience in the counseling field. While scanning through a binder of internships completed by prior students, I stumbled on and applied to intern at University Medical Center of Princeton’s Eating Disorder Program.
I had no idea what to expect, but over time I came to find myself both endeared by the spirit of the clients we served and in total awe of the clinicians that helped them. I left that internship thinking to myself – “I don’t know how those therapists do it, but I want to be just like them!” From that point on, I felt compelled to follow my passion and help those suffering from eating disorders.
During, and following, my graduate training at Rutgers University School of Social Work, I have been fortunate enough to treating people with eating disorders at the Inpatient, Residential, Partial, and IOP levels of care.
I’ve honed the majority of my specialty skills while working at the prestigious Monte Nido River Towns residential treatment center in Westchester, NY. Over the years I spent at Monte Nido, I served as both a Primary Therapist and eventually as the program’s Lead Therapist. Through this challenging and rewarding professional experience, I have helped many people address and heal from not only their eating disorders, but other co-occurring problems such as anxiety, depression, trauma, relationship problems, and OCD. My practice has always included treating clients on an Individual, Group, and Family basis.
Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT)
Cognitive Processing Therapy is an evidence-based treatment for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Therapy focuses on the beliefs that a person develops following a traumatic event that keep them stuck in the vicious symptoms of PTSD. Through examining and challenging specific individual beliefs, CPT allows people to develop a different perspective on their traumatic experience. Treatment is structured, customized, and blends both in-session work and take-home practice assignments to ensure that clients get the most out of their therapeutic effort.
8 Keys to Recovery from an Eating Disorder
Written by two therapists who recovered from their own eating disorders, the method of healing outlined by the “8 Keys” book formed the philosophical basis for the successful nation-wide network of Monte Nido treatment centers. Using an 8 Keys approach focuses treatment around the two warring voices in the mind of a person with an eating disorder – the aptly named “Healthy Self” and “Eating Disorder Self”. Working from an ‘8 Keys approach’ focuses on strengthening a client’s Healthy Self to put the Eating Disorder Self ‘out of a job’. Utilizing an 8 Keys approach ensures that clients are always focusing on what individually motivates both their eating disorder behaviors and their desire to recover.
Exposure and Response Prevention (EXRP)
Exposure and Response Prevention is a cognitive-behavioral, evidence-based, form of therapy that is specifically designed to treat Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Client’s utilizing EXRP engage in tailored behavioral challenges by gradually approaching anxiety-producing situations while abstaining from typically comforting ritualistic actions. Through repeated use of these techniques, anxiety and panic about obsessive worries are gradually reduced.