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Mood Disorder Therapy

Effective outpatient care for mood disorders

Struggling with a mood disorder? We will help you rebuild your life

Mood disorders such as depression, anxiety or bipolar disorder can turn a life upside down. Each creates its own pattern of disruption as the disorder takes over, often leading to feelings of worthlessness and despair.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. If you or someone you care about is struggling with a mood disorder or personality disorder, SunCloud Health is ready to help.

Under the direction of Kimberly Dennis, MD, a leading expert in the treatment of mood disorders and anxiety, our caring team will provide support and guidance for you every step of the way.

A priceless definition of abstinence, by a former patient (shared with permission).  All of us at SCH strive for this each and every day.

“Abstinence means waking up every day and dedicating myself to recovery.

Taking care of my body, mind and soul.

For my body, abstinence is avoiding toxic substances and eating nutritious foods to feel my body in a healthy way.

For my mind, abstinence means actively censoring my thoughts and effectively using my coping skills to manage stress and relieve anxiety.

For my soul, abstinence means truly being happy means that I make decisions that are consistent with my morals and values and take full responsibility for my choices.

That’s a very abundant definition of abstinence and not a definition I would in any way, shape or form associate with deprivation.”


Dr. Marcia Nickow, PSY.D., CADC, CGP, Clinical Director and Organizational Advisor at SunCloud Health on how mood disorders are often manifestations of trauma.


People with mood and anxiety disorders often don’t understand why they have such extreme feelings – everything from wild euphoria to a sense of utter brokenness. Many have been diagnosed by other doctors who missed the signs. Others are on medications that may or may not be effective. Many have lost faith that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Sound familiar? If so, you’re not alone. There is hope – and at SunCloud Health, we have the tools to support your recovery journey.


One of the things we’ve learned in caring for people with mood disorders is that frequently, there are several interrelated issues that must be treated. Drug addiction, alcoholism, eating disorders and even multiple mood disorders often develop together, and they’re often misdiagnosed.

Conversely, many people dealing with addictions or eating disorders also have mood disorders.  Where we see addiction and eating issues alongside at least one other psychiatric illness that’s clearly blocking the recovery process, we know we’re dealing with what is known as a co-occurring diagnosis. This is often the first step in creating a wellness plan that will lead to recovery and, ultimately, a stable, satisfying live.


At SunCloud Health, we have the tools and extensive experience needed to treat mood disorders with co-occurring issues.  Most outpatient facilities aren’t prepared to provide this level of care. But thanks to the expertise of our team and the thoughtful design of our private care center in Northbrook, Illinois, we are ready to help you or your loved one take the first steps toward wellness.


The SunCloud Health team wants to be certain you know the basics about care and treatment as you begin your journey. Here are a few questions we answer often for patients and prospective patients.

What if I have a mood disorder without addictive behaviors? Can you still help me?

Of course. We do specialize in cases where there are co-occurring conditions, but we also provide effective care for those facing mood disorders without other issues present.

Is it certain that I will develop an addiction or eating disorder if I have a mood disorder?

No. We’ve found that no two people are alike, and while many patients with mood disorders do develop related issues with alcohol, drugs and eating issues, it is by no means certain this will happen. We care for you based on what we see and what we know will work for your unique challenges.

Will I have to take medication?

Medication is almost always a key part of treating your mood disorder.  You will receive an expert evaluation first. Our CEO, Dr. Kim Dennis, oversees the medical team that will review your situation. Once a clear diagnosis is made, the team will consider which medications might be helpful in managing your mood disorder and any related issues.

Along with meds, will I work with a therapist to explore my feelings?

We approach mood disorder treatment in a holistic way, meeting you exactly where you are. Providing you with compassionate “talk therapy” will be part of your total wellness program.

As one famous teacher has said, “Only when compassion is present will people allow themselves to see the truth.”  We will help you discover the pathway to peace, which often means allowing pain to be your teacher so you can grow beyond it. We will help you find a way to be with your pain so you can figure out what it’s really about – which is the first step in dealing with it.


Dr. Kim and the team at SunCloud Health have treated thousands of people with mood disorders.  Our care team recognizes that no two individuals will need the same things. We develop a customized care plan designed to meet your unique needs.

We understand that you want an abundant life. Until now, this fulfilling life may have seemed far out of reach, stolen from you by the effects of your mood disorder. With proper care and time, that can change! We’ve seen it happen for thousands of others and we’re convinced it can happen for you.

We treat our patients and families first as human beings who are courageously stepping forward despite their pain and shame, seeking help and support. We do everything we can to make the process simpler for you.

Our medical team will work seamlessly with our therapy staff to support you in the lifelong journey of recovery that encompasses physical, emotional, psychosocial and spiritual growth.


Emily Long discusses how patients benefit from an integrative treatment approach and how that contributes to a more effective treatment experience at SunCloud Health.


The most crucial questions facing most people who enter treatment for mood disorders are: Will it work? And what kind of treatment will I need?

The good news is that treatment does work. We know this because we see it in our own patients every day – and we study the newest research that shows success rates for recovery from mood disorders. Even in the toughest situations, there is real hope, based on the experiences of millions of others just like you.

We also know that you have lots of questions on the cost of care, how to work with your insurance company, about the time commitment needed and whether you will fit in with others in our treatment community. We will answer these and all your questions, starting with your first face-to-face consultation with the SunCloud Health staff.

Many members of our treatment team have walked the same road you’re on now. Those of us who have recovered from mood disorders and related issues such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia or substance abuse disorder have a first-hand understanding of the difficulties you face. Working with the entire SunCloud Health staff, we will support you each and every step of the way.

We understand you need to feel safe here.  You need to feel that you can relate to our team and trust us. And you need to feel committed to doing the work necessary to get better.  Helping you arrive at that point of commitment and engagement will be our first goal in caring for you.


At SunCloud Health, we view the whole family system as a critical component of your treatment. We want to help you feel supported in every area of your life, starting with your family relationships.

Family therapy engages all family members in a healing process, rather than just focusing on the person with the mood disorder. We counsel parents and partners and provide caring, effective education to strengthen families and foster a nurturing home environment.

Please know that we will obtain your consent before involving any family member or other individual in your treatment plan. At all times, you are the one who guides important choices such as who you will work with.


Before admitting you to our outpatient program, we will explore the questions listed here. But don’t worry: we are here to guide you! This may seem like a lot to consider, but together, we’ll find the answers.

  • Do you in fact have a mood disorder that needs treatment?
  • Is SunCloud Health the right place for you?
  • Is there more than one psychiatric condition present?
  • Is outpatient care the right choice for the issues you’re facing?
  • About how long will treatment take?
  • Do you feel comfortable with our team? Do you trust us to help you?
  • What are your insurance benefits for mood disorder treatment and, if applicable, substance abuse disorder or eating disorder treatment?
  • How much will your treatment cost out of pocket?
  • Do you have any current therapists or clinicians who should be on your care team?  We will work cooperatively with your existing primary care physician and other professionals to provide the best possible treatment for you.


After you are admitted to our outpatient program, we will create a team to manage your comprehensive, individualized treatment plan. Your team may include:

  • A psychiatrist to oversee medications
  • A primary treatment coordinator, often a therapist
  • A registered dietician
  • A registered nurse practitioner
  • A skilled family therapist
  • A certified alcohol and drug therapist (CADC), if appropriate

We may also refer you to other consulting healthcare providers who can address medical issues that should be resolved as part of your recovery.

Each team member brings extensive experience to the table. All will work together to provide an integrated approach to your personal care plan.

You can expect to take part in individual and group therapy as part of your treatment plan. You will also likely receive a prescription for one or more mood-stabilizing medications. As you progress, your care team will work closely with you to determine what’s working, what’s not working and make adjustments to foster your progress.


Unlike some diseases, where all you need to do is lie on a table and let the doctor care for you, recovering from a mood disorder is hard work. This is true whether you’re facing major depression, bipolar disorder, extreme anxiety or related issues such as alcohol and drug addiction or eating disorders.

You must be fully committed. You must want to get better and devote yourself to the pursuit of wellness. But the good news is, you won’t have to walk that road alone.

At SunCloud Health, you will have direct and daily access to some of the best treatment providers in the country.  You will participate in group therapy as well as individual therapy.   When you feel like something is working, we want you to let us know.  At the same time, if something feels uncomfortable or you feel you just don’t fit in, we want to know that too so we can work out a good solution for you.


The SunCloud Health team provides patients with:

  • Expressive and experiential therapy
  • Skills-based therapy such as DBT, ACT and CBT
  • 12-step recovery programs and facilitation
  • Education about the disease, its effects on you, your mind, your soul and your body
  • Group sessions to teach and practice healthy interpersonal and relationship management
  • Meal support and regular consultation with dietary staff as needed
  • Regular psychiatric consultations
  • Family therapy, including family participation if appropriate
  • Yoga and body image therapy, when appropriate
  • Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), if appropriate


As an outpatient treatment center, SunCloud Health is in an ideal position to support you for as long as you agree our services are useful to you. With multiple levels of outpatient care, you may decide to stay connected through one of our aftercare outpatient groups – or you may want to continue seeing one of our individual therapists.  We are here to provide continuous, caring support for your recovery journey.

Though we understand fully that you don’t want to spend your life in treatment, we also know from experience that a lifetime commitment to wellness is the foundation of your well-being over the long term. We will work with you to maintain a healthy outlook, which means achieving balance, honesty, and health — physical, emotional and spiritual. Our goal is to create a care plan that you can take with you forever, wherever you may go.


Dr. Marcia Nickow, Psy.D., CADC, CGP shares her thoughts on hope for recovery at SunCloud Health.


Dr. Kim Dennis, Co-Founder and Medical Director at SunCloud Health, discusses current research and practice around medical marijuana as it relates to mental health and answers the question: what do you say to a patient that comes in seeking treatment for a mood disorder but doesn’t want to stop using marijuana or other brain-altering substances?

Living with depression and anxiety my entire life has been plain and simply just terrible. I have been on a merry go round of medication for decades and I have been diagnosed with just about every “mood disorder” out there. Often, I would turn to some form of self-destructive behavior as a way to deal with my pain and despair, and until recently I felt like this was just the way it was going to be forever. When I came to see Dr. Kim, I felt like I had met the “Dr. House” of Psychiatry (great TV series!). She actually spent countless hours in therapy with me and my family properly diagnosing me for the first time in my life and getting my medication finally on the right track. She is anything but a typical psychiatrist who spends maybe 10 minutes with patients and then runs out. The experience at SunCloud helped me see that, with ongoing support, I can actually live a normal and stable life.

~ SCH patient

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Accreditations, Certifications & Licensing

DASA License. Department of Alcohol and Substance Abuse.
Joint Commission Behavioral Health Care Accreditation.
The Joint Commission signifies that all people always experience the safest, highest quality, best-value health care across all settings with a devotion to patient safety. The Gold Seal, is a symbol to the community and patients we serve that SunCloud Health has placed an emphasis on quality of care.

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One of the nations most trusted names in treating substance use addictions, eating disorders, mood disorders, PTSD and related traumas.
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