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A-Z Teen Health Glossary



  • The empowerment of teens and their families is the cornerstone of effective treatment.
  • All adolescents are deserving of being treated with dignity and respect.
  • The provision of services to adolescents is highly specialized and requires a unique knowledge base and skill set.
  • It is our job to motivate teens and help them find value in their treatment experience.
  • Adolescents should be engaged as full partners in the creation and implementation of their treatment plans.
  • Family involvement is an important component of adolescent treatment and as such must be supported and encouraged.
  • Treatment must focus on the emotional underpinnings of behaviors rather than simply focusing on behaviors themselves.
  • Treatment must be reflective of real life to be transferable and sustainable.
  • Treatment should be built on a teen's strengths and interests.
  • Good aftercare services are a natural and necessary component post treatment.

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  • We are here to assist you and answer your questions, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All calls are confidential.

From the Founder and Clinical Director, Dr. Jeff Nalin, Psy.D. (PSY17766)

For almost 20 years, Cole and I have dedicated our lives to improving the quality and effectiveness of treatment for young people with mental health concerns. As many know, adolescent treatment has a long history of offering compliance-based, punitive therapies as a means to modify their behaviors. These approaches continue to be wide spread today, despite having more than 60 years of research demonstrating that such interventions are largely ineffective and rarely result in sustainable change.

At Paradigm, we have devoted ourselves to shifting the paradigm of youth treatment through the creation and implementation of an empowerment-based treatment model. Our model seeks to fully understand the emotional underpinnings of maladaptive behaviors and create personal insights. Through such efforts, young people are able to better develop internalized motivators, gain a sense of mastery, feel better and ultimately do better.

At no time do we seek to break youth down, rather we work to build them up. We strive to help them find value in approaching their lives differently to get different results. This often times includes efforts to assist them in seeing and understanding themselves in new positive ways that ultimately allows them to achieve their full potential. What could be more meaningful?
We thank you for taking the time to explore our website. In addition, we invite you to give us a call or visit us in person. We welcome any opportunity to share our work and the experiences of the courageous, talented teens that we are honored to serve.

Cole Rucker, MA - Founder and CEO | Paradigm Malibu

From the Founder & CEO, Cole Rucker, MA

For much of our early careers, both Dr. Nalin and I were forced to navigate treatment environments where young people struggling with mental health issues were provided with inadequate care. Worse yet, youth were often times treated with disregard, or as problems to be managed. Treatment approaches were frequently cookie-cutter and focused primarily on treating symptoms and containment of behaviors. When we challenged or attempted to shift others away from the use of outdated modalities, provided in less than optimal milieus, we were often rebuffed with the retort that the treatment was “industry standard”.

We soon learned to stop asking “why” and started asking “what if”. What if we shifted the paradigm of teen treatment? What if there were an adolescent treatment program where all young people were treated with dignity and respect and were equal partners in the creation and implementation of their treatment plans? What if this treatment was for youth who were described by their teachers, neighbors and families as “good kids who simply need help with something,” a place for the bullied rather than the bullies? What if these young people were provided with individual therapy every day of treatment, and medication was seen as a last resort rather than a first? What if there were no phase symptoms or point systems? What if the focus was helping young people find value in approaching their lives differently to get different results? Years later, Paradigm Treatment Centers provide the answer to those questions; young people thrive.

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We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All calls are confidential.
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