Alternatives to Psychiatric Meds

Dr. Leder’s decisions to study psychology as an undergraduate at Brown, then go on to medical school, and then join Dr. Robert Atkins at his clinic to practice alternative medicine, were all motivated by one and the same thing:  her strong interest in understanding how to treat psychological conditions in the safest and most effective ways.

Literally from childhood, she has been fascinated with anything related to this topic, beginning with the original work in so-called “orthomolecular psychiatry” (the use of large doses of nutritional supplements and diet in place of psychiatric drugs to treat psychological conditions) of Nobelist Linus Pauling and Canadian pioneer Abram Hoffer.  The doctor was also influenced by the writings of R.D. Laing. Laing believed that much could be learned by a patient in severe psychiatric distress if their “breakdown” was viewed as a life changing piece in their psychological development, to be navigated carefully and explored, and the patient was actively supported throughout this phase, rather than suppressed and all efforts placed on reverting him back to his or her prior (unstable and prone to breakdown) state. Dr. Leder also focused on the character and bodywork of Freud’s protégé, Wilhelm Reich.

Since then, Dr, Leder has taken every available opportunity to enhance her knowledge in the area of psychology/psychiatry.  For many years, she immersed herself in the body-based bioenergetics of Alexander Lowen, took classwork in topics in psychiatry and neurotransmitters, both nutritionally and traditionally oriented, studied meditation, went through the self-help movement, and studied basics of psychoanalysis at the Manhattan Institute. 

While her ideal would be to be able to treat those with psychiatric concerns in an inpatient clinic where support could be more intensive and consistent, for now, her practice in Hackensack is the venue through which she offers personal consultations to achieve more holistic psychiatric treatment plans for her patients.