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Gender Dysphoria

Clarity Clinic is a haven of understanding and support for individuals seeking to navigate the complexities of gender dysphoria. Our Gender Dysphoria treatment is thoughtfully designed to provide holistic care, expert guidance, and a pathway to self-discovery and authentic self-expression. Led by a team of compassionate therapists and psychiatrists, Clarity Clinic is dedicated to helping you embrace your true identity, navigate challenges, and live a life of fulfillment and empowerment.
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Gender Dysphoria Defined

Gender dysphoria involves a conflict between a person’s physical or assigned gender and the gender with which he/she/they identify. People with gender dysphoria may be very uncomfortable with the gender they were assigned, sometimes described as being uncomfortable with their body (particularly developments during puberty) or being uncomfortable with the expected roles of their assigned gender. People with gender dysphoria may often experience significant distress and/or problems functioning associated with this conflict between the way they feel and think of themselves (referred to as experienced or expressed gender) and their physical or assigned gender. Gender conflict affects people in different ways. It can change the way a person wants to express their gender and can influence behavior, dress, and self-image.

Gender Dysphoria Causes

There is no known direct cause of gender dysphoria, but genes, hormonal influences in the womb, and environmental factors are all suspected to be involved.

Gender Dysphoria Symptoms

To be diagnosed with general Gender dysphoria in children, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the following criteria must be met:

  • A marked incongruence between one’s experienced/expressed gender and assigned gender, of at least 6 months duration, as manifested by at least six of the following (one of which must be Criterion A1):
    • A strong desire to be of the other gender or an insistence that one is the other gender (or some alternative gender different from one’s assigned gender).
    • In boys (assigned gender), a strong preference for cross-dressing or simulating female attire; or in girls (assigned gender), a strong preference for wearing only typical masculine clothing and strong resistance to the wearing of typical feminine clothing.
    • A strong preference for cross-gender roles in make-believe play or fantasy play.
    • A strong preference for the toys, games, or activities stereotypically used or engaged in by the other gender.
    • A strong preference for playmates of the other gender.
    • In boys (assigned gender), a strong rejection of typically masculine toys, games, and activities and a strong avoidance of rough-and-tumble play; or in girls (assigned gender), a strong rejection of typically feminine toys, games, and activities.
    • A strong dislike of one’s sexual anatomy.
    • A strong desire for the primary and/or secondary sex characteristics that match one’s experienced gender.
    • The condition is associated with clinically significant distress or impairment in social, school, or other important areas of functioning.

To be diagnosed with general Gender dysphoria in adolescents and adults, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the following criteria must be met:

  • A marked incongruence between one’s experienced/expressed gender and assigned gender, of at least 6 months duration, as manifested by at least six of the following:
    • A marked incongruence between one’s experienced/expressed gender and primary and/or secondary sex characteristics (or in young adolescents, the anticipated secondary sex characteristics).
    • A strong desire to be rid of one’s primary and/or secondary sex characteristics because of a marked incongruence with one’s experienced/expressed gender (or in young adolescents, a desire to prevent the development of the anticipated secondary sex characteristics).
    • A strong desire for the primary and/or secondary sex characteristics of the other gender.
    • A strong desire to be the other gender (or some alternative gender different from one’s assigned gender)
    • A strong desire to be treated as the other gender (or some alternative gender different from one’s assigned gender).
    • A strong conviction that one has the typical feelings and reactions of the other gender (or some alternative gender different from one’s assigned gender).
    • The condition is associated with clinically significant distress or impairment in social, school, or other important areas of functioning.

How to Approach a Loved One

There is no perfect way to approach a loved one that is assumed or known to have gender dysphoria. In children and adolescents, it is important to take the lead from the individual, allow them to be who they feel they are, and get help if they need it. A study of transgender teens found that more than 50 percent of transgender males and almost 30 percent of transgender females reported attempting suicide. It is important to provide support to a loved one that is experiencing gender dysphoria and continue to be informed on the best ways to support them.

Types of Gender Dysphoria Treatment

The focus of treatment for gender dysphoria focuses on alleviating a person’s distress that surrounds their gender identity. It can be common for this distress to lead to anxiety and/or depression which may also need to be treated. A child’s treatment typically involves a multi-disciplinary team of health care professionals, which may include a pediatrician, a psychiatrist, other mental health professionals, a pediatric endocrinologist (specialists in hormone conditions in children), and an advocate.

Individual Therapy

In individual therapy, a person experiencing gender dysphoria can explore these feelings and distress and learn the tools to cope with it. The goal of therapy is not to change how an individual feels about their gender. Through therapy, individuals can also work with their families or significant others, to help them determine the best way to shape their gender expression for the healthiest outcome. Some people choose to take steps to bring their physical appearance in line with their gender and they may change the way they dress or go by a different name. These changes in an individual’s life are also topics that can be discussed in therapy.

Family Therapy

Gender dysphoria can impact not only the individual but also their loved ones. Our family therapy sessions facilitate open communication and understanding, helping families navigate challenges together.

Medication Management

Medication may be used to treat other related disorders that can be accompanied by gender dysphoria like anxiety and depression which can include antidepressants and anti-anxiety medication. These medications may have side effects and taking them can lead to tolerance, withdrawal symptoms, and dependence, so you must consult with a physician before starting or stopping these medications.

Invest in Your Self-Discovery Today

If you're ready to embrace your true identity, navigate the journey of self-discovery, and live a life of authenticity and empowerment, Clarity Clinic is here for you. Our dedicated team is committed to supporting you on your journey toward self-discovery, understanding, and empowerment.

Gender Dysphoria FAQ

Gender Dysphoria Providers

Elizabeth
Elizabeth Black, LCPC
Director of Clinical Therapy- Lakeview
Anish
Anish Desai, MD
Therapy
Rebecca
Rebecca Helm, LSW
Therapy
Peri
Peri Drury, Clinical Intern
Therapy
Ryan
Ryan Atkins, PA
Psychiatry
Cesar
Cesar Feijoo, PA-C
PA-C
Hannah
Hannah Wychocki, PA-C
PA-C
Lauren
Lauren Isdale, NP
Nurse Practitioner
Gabriella
Gabriella Lerner, PA-C
PA-C
Cyrus
Cyrus Ma, PA-C
PA-C
Zubair
Zubair Khan, PA-C
PA-C
Nicholas
Nicholas Zaris, LPC
Therapy
Kumail
Kumail Hussain, MD
Young Adult and Child/Adolescent Psychiatrist
Megan
Megan Becker, PA-C
PA-C
Emma
Emma Arsic, PA-C
PA-C
Paul
Paul Bamberger, PA-C
PA-C
Jason
Jason Brescia, LCPC
Therapy
Sankrant
Sankrant Reddy, MD
Psychiatrist
Stephanie
Stephanie Osborne, PA-C
Psychiatry
Ashley
Ashley Seredynski, PA-C
PA-C
Christine
Christine Lantin, PA-C
PA-C
Chad
Chad Gaynier, LCPC
Therapist
Sudhakar
Sudhakar Shenoy, MD
Adult and Child/Adolescent Psychiatrist
Sharon
Sharon Koys, PA-C
PA-C
Sarah
Sarah Beerman, LCSW, CADC
Therapist
Sahar
Sahar Eftekhar, DO
General & Addiction Psychiatrist
Rebecca
Rebecca Gilfillan, MD
Psychiatrist
Rebecca
Rebecca Kuhn, PA-C
PA-C
Sonnie
Sonnie Cousins, MA
Therapy
Nicole
Nicole Ortiz, PhD
Licensed Clinical Psychologist
Elana
Elana Horowitz, PA-C
PA-C
Pavan
Pavan Prasad, MD
Psychiatrist
Mary
Mary Leighton, LPC
Therapy
Mariyah
Mariyah Hussain, MD
Adult and Child/Adolescent Psychiatrist
Kiran Binal
Kiran Binal Maharaja, MD
Psychiatrist
Kalyan
Kalyan Rao, MD
Psychiatrist
Jonathan
Jonathan Kolakowski, MD
Psychiatrist
Judy
Judy Bitzer, LCPC
Therapist
James
James Histed, Clinical Intern
Therapy Clinical Intern
Erika
Erika Bielenstein, LCPC
Therapist
Janel
Janel Wenger, AMFT
Therapist
Jeanette
Jeanette Marinier, PA-C
PA-C
Jamie
Jamie Schubert, PA-C
PA-C
Sherita
Sherita Hernton, PA-C
PA-C
Emily
Emily Schaffer, PA-C
PA-C
Emily
Emily Maurer, LCPC
Therapist
Emily
Emily Street, PA-C
PA-C
Thomas
Thomas Thurlow, NP
Psychiatry
Savannah
Savannah Sullivan, PA-C
PA-C
Kathryn
Kathryn Ross, PA-C
Psychiatry
Summer
Summer Slininger, PA-C
PA-C
Ravali
Ravali Poreddy, MD
Psychiatrist
Ariella
Ariella Panos, PA-C
PA-C
James
James Ham, PA-C
Psychiatry
Rayna
Rayna Gorstein, PA-C
PA-C
Sierra
Sierra Purcell, PA-C
PA-C
Emily
Emily Hoag, MD
Psychiatrist
Ali
Ali Sheikha, PA-C
PA-C
Grace
Grace Starrs, PA-C
Psychiatry
Cassie
Cassie Donahue, PA-C
Psychiatry
Gayathri
Gayathri Ganesh, PA-C
PA-C
Ryan
Ryan Watters, LSW, CADC
Therapy
Samuel
Samuel Eckert, PA-C
PA-C
Cindy
Cindy Meraz, LPC
Therapy
Rafael
Rafael Lopez, MD
Psychiatrist
Nicholas
Nicholas Little, PA-C
PA-C
Scott
Scott Shadrick, PA-C
PA-C
Mira
Mira Ebalo, PA-C
PA-C
Lauren
Lauren Stanley, LCSW
Therapy
Mark
Mark Bey, LPC
Therapy
Miriam
Miriam Mixon, LCSW
Therapist, Clinical Supervisor
Jessica
Jessica Baran, LCPC
Therapy
Justin
Justin Lee, PA-C
PA-C
Jordan
Jordan Valentic-Holden, MA
Therapy
Heather
Heather Holmes, PA-C
PA-C
Carol
Carol Briggs, LPC, NCC
Therapy
Emily
Emily Filip, PA-C
PA-C
Liz
Liz Hand, LCSW
Therapist, Clinical Supervisor
Jenna
Jenna Jacobson, PA-C
PA-C
Caitlin
Caitlin Daughtry, PA-C
PA-C
Camryn
Camryn Schmidt, PA-C
PA-C
Dillon
Dillon Pfau, LSW
Therapy
Christopher
Christopher Edwards, LCSW
Therapist
Carolyn
Carolyn Klinkert, LCPC
Therapist, Clinical Supervisor
Angelina
Angelina Wheeler, LCPC
Therapist, Clinical Supervisor
Brent
Brent Hope, LCSW
Therapy
Alexandra
Alexandra Gregor, PA-C
PA-C
Allegria
Allegria Knouse, PA-C
PA-C
Bakhtawar
Bakhtawar Usman, PA-C
Psychiatry
Antonina
Antonina Lunetta, LCPC
Therapist, Clinical Supervisor
Alyssa
Alyssa Bobak, PA-C
PA-C

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