anxiety treatment options

The Partial Hospitalization and Intensive Outpatient Treatment Program is for individuals with moderate to severe levels of anxiety whose needs have not been effectively met through weekly individual or group therapy sessions. It is also for individuals whose symptoms significantly disrupt daily activities such as work, school and relationships, which can result in isolation and depression. Clients work individually with a behavioral specialist so that each person’s unique needs are addressed.  This level of service we offer is highly rare and unique as you will find that most facilities offer limited one-on-one treatment and focus more on a group based approach.

An additional benefit to participation in these programs is that patients can see that they are not alone and interact with others who are experiencing similar symptoms and concerns. This is extremely rewarding for the individual struggling as often times we hear statements such as “I felt like I was the only one who was going through this,” or “I didn’t think that anyone would understand.”

These programs are offered twice per day:

Morning Track:

  •  Monday through Friday  9am to 12pm

Afternoon Track:

  • Monday through Friday from 1pm-4pm

Length of stay is generally four to six weeks and our behavioral specialists treat ages beginning as young as 4 years old.

 Over the course of treatment, individuals will receive the following:

  • Comprehensive evaluation and assessment
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Exposure and Response Prevention Therapy (ERP)
  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
  • Self Compassion
  • Education surrounding causes of anxiety disorders
  • Mindfulness-based training
  • Social skills and assertiveness training
  • Medication Management Group
  • Relaxation training, and stress management
  • Family therapy and/or couples therapy
  • Psychopharmacological consultation as needed
  • Psychological testing as needed
  • Collaboration with community mental health professionals
  • Relapse Prevention
  • Follow-up outpatient treatment
  • Aftercare groups

Specialized Children’s Track:

The Anxiety Treatment Center is recognized nationally for our expertise in working with children and adolescents, ages 4-17, who experience anxiety that impairs some aspect of their life including school, social, or other activities of daily living.  Many times anxiety can manifest differently in these ages when compared to adults, demonstrating more active signs of depression, irritability, frustration, and even anger.  For some, they will have difficulty articulating what they are feeling and even shut down.  Restlessness, loss of appetite, social withdrawal, and difficulty experiencing happiness and pleasure is also common.

Our specialized track provides therapists with particular skill to be able to work with children at all levels of impairment. Using a gentle approach, our behavioral specialists are able to use language and techniques (including art therapy and equine therapy) which help to increase motivation and compliance with the treatment process.  For those children who are particularly withdrawn, our therapy dog offers a special presence to help kids open up and express themselves.  Like adults, anxiety can manifest in may different forms however, typically seen are those struggling with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD), Panic Disorder, and Specific Phobias.  It is also become increasingly more prevalent that children between these ages experience Excoriation Disorder (skin picking), Trichotillomania (hair pulling), and nail biting.  These later group of conditions are referred to as a category called Body Focused Repetitive Behaviors and require an entirely different focus of treatment referred to as Habit Reversal Training (HRT).

The Children’s Track operates independently from the adult track, offering an opportunity to connect with others their age.  Often times feeling misunderstood by those who do not struggle with similar symptoms, they are able to relate in a way that others their age may not be able to.  Parents are actively involved in the treatment of their child on a daily basis through family meetings to help them better understand the therapeutic process and how they can best support their child.  Our Parental Support Group, which fosters an opportunity for parents to develop a community of collaboration, rounds out the treatment process to provide a comprehensive program.

For those who are not able to attend school, the staff at The Anxiety Treatment Center will work with the educational system to ensure that all necessary arrangements are made to support reintegration back to school. This is includes collaboration with school personnel (teachers, counselors, etc) and any paperwork or forms to be completed.  Working individually with each child, their therapist will also assist the return by traveling to and from the school with the child (and parent) as needed, participate in meetings with school staff, and remain on the premises with the child until they are able to do so independently.

The Daily Schedule at The Anxiety Treatment Center

The schedule at The ATC is as follows.  We begin the day with a check-in group.  This allows participants to discuss their homework successes and accomplishments as well as any difficulties and struggles that may surface.  It is an opportunity to share with others and to hear from peers who are experiencing similar challenges and how they may have handled or resolved them.  This provides an avenue for individuals to see that they are not alone, and that there are others who can truly relate to them.  There is a tremendous healing that can occur during this process alone.  Following group we offer a time for journaling and self-introspection.  Clients can write about their fears, topics to discuss with their therapist, or just let their mind take them on a pathway of private internal thoughts that can be expressed through writing.  Staff will then begin to work one on one with their client beginning the Cognitive Behavioral Treatment and Exposure Therapy Process.

The Anxiety Treatment Center recognizes that many individuals experience triggers or fears in their home and community. As such, treatment will occur where ever the client needs assistance.  Our highly individualized treatment plans allow for the behavioral specialists at The ATC to directly target the areas that are producing difficulty.  This increases success in the desensitization process and helps to build confidence in one’s ability to address their triggers on their own.

The day will wrap-up with a final group to discuss the day’s events and homework assignments.

Intertwined into our program, we offer groups for both patients and family members/loved ones to discuss treatment goals, progress, psycho-education, impact symptoms has had on their lives, and so forth.  Mindfulness-based groups, in addition to stress management, healthy living considerations, depression management, relapse prevention, and aftercare are also offered.

New To Our Facility! Equine Assisted Activity Track (EAA)

Seasonal/weather permitting. Equine therapy, also known as Equine-Assisted Therapy (EAT), is a treatment that includes equine activities and/or an equine environment in order to promote physical, occupational, and emotional support for a number of different mental health conditions, including anxiety disorders.  Equine Therapy can help an individual build confidence, self-efficiency, communication, trust, perspective, social skills, impulse control, and learn boundaries.  Since the horses have similar behaviors with humans, such as social and responsive behaviors, it is easy for the patients to create a connection with the horse. Equine-Assisted Therapies  have been recognized in the mental health and medical field by most major countries.  While EAT is not the frontline treatment for anxiety disorders, it is a wonderful augmentation to our services that has had a very powerful impact on those who have participated.  For more information about this service, visit our Equine Assisted Activities page located under Our Services.

Phobia Track

From our perspective, phobias are a distant cousin to OCD.  With OCD, individuals have a perceived fear that is far greater than the actual threat.  The person who has a phobia experiences the same phenomenon. Both are fearful of certain places, situations, or objects that are not likely going to harm them, however, the key is that it “feels” real to them.  In OCD, the thoughts are typically of a bizarre, irrational nature whereas in phobias, the fear is typically associated with a particular object or situation.  Examples include the following:

  • Flying
  • Elevators
  • Heights
  • Animals (Typically dogs, cats, birds)
  • Insects (Bees/wasps, spiders, moths)
  • Reptiles (Snakes/lizards)
  • Social situations (Fear of getting sick, crowds, eating in public)
  • Noises/sounds (Sirens, chewing)
  • Weather (Wind, rain, tornados, lightening)

For more information, visit our Phobias Track page under Our Services.

Your Greater Good!

Integral to our program is Jeff Bell, San Francisco News Anchor and Author of Rewind, Replay, Repeat: A Memoir of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and When In Doubt, Make Belief .  Regularly, Jeff facilitates a group introducing how to apply his “Greater Good” principles to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Exposure and Response Prevention techniques in treating OCD and other anxiety-related conditions.  This group is an hour and a half, and is open to both clients and family members who are interested in learning the application of these principles.  For those who are not in the Partial Hospitalization Program or Intensive Outpatient Treatment Program, this workshop is offered periodically on Saturdays, and is open to consumers, professionals, educators, family members and friends.  More information can be located at

Options for Other Services at The Anxiety Treatment Center

The Anxiety Treatment Center is a full-service clinic also offering lower levels of care also. For those who do not require day treatment, there are various options.  These allow for little to no disruption in ones daily work, educational, and social schedule.

Individual Therapy is for those with mild to moderate levels of anxiety, who feel that they can learn and apply the principles on an outpatient basis. Outpatient behavioral therapy usually consists of one to two 45-50 minute sessions (or longer if needed) per week, depending on the symptom severity. Individuals will receive the same services offered in day treatment programs, however over a longer period of time.  For those who would like to be seen more frequently, our behavioral specialists can accommodate seeing clients up to five times per week which can include either single or double sessions.

Group Therapy is for those who have mild levels of anxiety and can benefit from a therapeutic group and supportive experience. Group therapy can be an adjunct to any of our day treatment programs or to individual therapy.  Current groups offered include: Aftercare, Social Anxiety, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive  Behavioral Therapy, and Generalized Anxiety.

Family Therapy.  We recognize that a person’s anxiety symptoms can directly impact their family members. It is common that family members feel frustrated and experience confusion about how to work with their loved one’s symptoms. As such, an integral part of treatment is to provide education and support to family members and friends. This helps validate the difficulties family members are having, and provide an opportunity to answer any questions that will help clarify how their presence and involvement can support the therapeutic process.

Collaboration with Other Professionals is a critical component of the treatment provided at The ATC.  This includes an individuals psychiatrist, current or previous therapist, general practitioner, or any other mental health or medical professionals involved.  For those who require referrals, staff can assist in locating specialists in one’s area and contracted with their insurance company.

Admission Process

Evaluations typically involve a 45-50 minute office visit, and can occur at the treatment facility or over the telephone (for those that having difficulty leaving their home or for those who live out of the area). Our behavioral specialists can also travel to one’s home to do an evaluation if needed.

During the evaluation, individuals will complete a few brief assessment forms, have an opportunity to discuss their symptoms, and receive feedback regarding how they can benefit from therapy. The optimal treatment modality will be discussed, as well as estimated length of time one can expect to remain in treatment. Time will be provided to ask/answer questions.

To inquire about admission into The Anxiety Treatment Center of Sacramento or to seek information about our services, feel free to contact Dr. Robin Zasio, Psy.D., LCSW, Director, at 916.366.0647, or go to the Contact Us Page and send us an email.  Calls can be received from individuals seeking treatment, family members, loved ones, mental health professionals, or caring friends.

Insurance Considerations

The Anxiety Treatment Center is the only program in the country that offers the comprehensive services listed above.  And, being the longest standing specialty facility in Northern California treating solely anxiety disorders and related conditions, our reputation has fostered a very positive relationship with the most predominant nationally-based insurance companies.  If we are not contracted, it is likely that your insurance company will consider a special waiver given that there are no other facilities in the State of California similar to The Anxiety Treatment Center.  Additionally, many individuals are not familiar with The Parity Law which mandates that most insurance companies must provide specialized treatment services for certain chemically based conditions such as OCD and Panic Disorder.  All prior insurance authorizations will be completed by the intake department and members only need to check on their financial responsibility such as deductible, co-insurance, or co-pay.  You can find more information on The Parity Law under our Articles page. Please note that The Anxiety Treatment Center is not contracted with Medicare, Medi-Cal or TRICARE.

Practice Announcement!

THE ANXIETY TREATMENT CENTER OF SACRAMENTO is looking for professionals who are interested in joining their team of experts in their PHP & IOP Programs. Part-time/full-time positions with opportunity to build or enhance an existing private practice, with office space available. Specialty services include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Exposure and Response Prevention. Contact Dr. Robin Zasio,Psy.D.,LCSW at 916.366.0647 or [email protected].

Academic Perfectionism Track

The Anxiety Treatment Center has launched the newly developed Academic Perfectionism Track, the first program of its kind. Academic Perfectionism includes school-interfering behaviors such as procrastination and excessive time spent on work, which ultimately contribute to anxiety, depression, and negative academic outcomes. Students may benefit from cognitive therapy to challenge their perfectionistic beliefs, behavior therapy to help with problematic behaviors, and time management and organizational skills. The program will serve high school, undergraduate, and graduate students as well as medical students, residents, and fellows from across the country. More information will be posted in the coming month. If you have any questions regarding this new service, contact Dr. Robin Zasio, Psy.D., LCSW at 916.366.0647, Ext. 4 or [email protected].