Gastroenterology behavioral medicine is a sub-specialty of providers who are trained not only in mental health but also in the unique issues of people diagnosed with digestive illnesses. Services are designed for people may not have a mental health problem, rather those who want to better manage their physical condition. Treatment aims to reduce the intensity and frequency of illness symptoms, improve your quality of life, provide support for medical decision making or health education, improve coping skills, and reduce stress and worry.
Behavioral medicine treatments are especially helpful for people who have GI symptoms that keep them from living their lives as they would like, such as not being able to take part in activities they once could or experiencing strains in their personal relationships. People who have found that life stress makes their digestive symptoms worse, who are very worried about their illness, who feel depressed or anxious because of their condition, or do not have a good support network also find behavioral treatments to be very useful. Finally, people who need help with making medical decisions or find that they are seeing their physician much more frequently than they would like are likely to benefit.
Health Psychologists on staff at Suburban Gastroenterology, LTD
Tiffany Taft, PSYD
Dr. Taft is a licensed clinical psychologist and is director of adult behavioral medicine. She has specialty training in health psychology and cognitive-behavioral therapy. Dr. Taft is a leading expert on the psychological and social aspects of chronic digestive illnesses including IBS, Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, and Eosinophilic GI Diseases. She has over 10 years of extensive experience working with people with chronic illness and has published several articles and three book chapters on the psychological aspects of these conditions.
Dr. Taft is a Clinical Research Associate at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine where she continues to research psychosocial issues people living with chronic digestive conditions face. She completed her post-doctoral fellowship within the Center for Psychosocial Research in GI at NU. She received her doctorate in clinical psychology from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology in 2009 after completing a 1-year internship at the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center in Chicago. Dr. Taft has spoken at patient education conferences across the United States including with the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America, the CURED Foundation, and the Oley Foundation. Her approach to therapy is to teach clients to be their own therapists and learn skills that will last a lifetime so they can better self-manage issues that come with having a chronic illness. Dr. Taft is certified in medical hypnotherapy.
Anjali Pandit, PHD, MPH
Dr. Pandit received her doctorate in clinical psychology from Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine and completed internship at the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center. Her interest is focused on the intersection of health and psychological concerns, and the mind-body connection. She has specialty training in treating digestive illnesses, and other health-related problems including insomnia, obesity, tobacco use, chronic pain, migraines and concerns related to a cancer diagnosis and survivorship. With the understanding that each patient is unique, Dr. Pandit’s therapeutic style is collaborative and goal based. She generally uses a cognitive behavioral, motivational and mindfulness approach to psychotherapy.
Dr. Pandit has published literature related to health literacy and disease-related distress and has presented on these topics at various conferences including, the Health Literacy Research Conference (HARC), the Society of Behavioral Medicine (SBM), the Society of General Internal Medicine (SGIM), and the International Conference for Communication in Healthcare (ICCH). Dr. Pandit is certified in medical hypnotherapy