Meet our Practitioners

Valerie Ling

Clinical Psychologist

Valerie Ling, MClin Psych, BA(Hons), MAPS, has helped clients of all ages find their voice and their way. Valerie has worked in community health settings as well as hospital inpatient and outpatient settings.

Her private practice work has been located previously in North Turramurra, North Ryde and now in Westleigh. Some of the issues Valerie has helped her clients with include Depression, Anxiety Disorders, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Trauma, Body Image and Eating Disorders, and Child and Adolescent psychology.

Valerie began her career as a consultant in the corporate world, working internationally in talent assessment and development. As such she is able to engage with her clients facing career transition or work related stress.

Valerie has a special interest in the prevention and treatment of burnout. She is frequently called upon by organsations to speak to members and staff of welfare, helping and teaching professionals.  At an organisational level Valerie is involved in consulting at a strategic level to optimise resiliency and mental health wellbeing.  Valerie is the wife of a Presbyterian Minister with cross-cultural experience, and burnout is a topic that is both lived experience and professional passion.

Valerie has a special interest in:

•   The prevention and treatment of burnout
•   Cross-cultural and humanitarian workers
•   Empty Nesters
•   Trauma
•   Parenting

In her down time, Valerie enjoys coffee, books, writing, music, and occasionally running.

Michelle Dean

Clinical Psychologist

Michelle Dean (M Clin Psych, BA (Hons – First Class), brings her genuine care and compassion for people, along with her keen insight and analytical abilities to her work.

Proficient in her skills of clinical psychology, Michelle’s experience comes from working in both public and private settings. This includes working in roles at Westmead Children’s Hospital, Blacktown Mental Health, the Brain and Mind Research Institute, Headspace and The Hills Clinic.

Across all these roles, she has provided diagnostic assessments and individual therapy for mental health issues, including anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, and obsessive-compulsive disorders. Michelle enjoys working with anxiety disorders, self-concept and self-worth issues, and mood and affect regulation issues. Michelle has worked with both adolescents and adults facing these difficulties.

Through her various roles, she has developed a deep understanding of how these difficulties develop and impact on people in different life stages. Michelle has been able to assist her clients in developing skills to manage their anxiety and depression, along with enabling them to develop a healthy sense of self and greater self confidence.

Through her outpatient work experience, Michelle is interested in Anxiety Disorders and self-esteem work.  Michelle is a high calibre and compassionate professional and she is wonderful at being able to see the complexities of a clinical presentation and bring her therapeutic work down to a manageable and structured approach.

Michelle has a special interest in:

•  Anxiety disorders
•  Self-esteem
•  Work stress
•  Adolescent mental health
•  Men’s mental health

She is also an invited guest lecturer at Western Sydney University, having lectured in subjects on psychological disorders, assessment and treatment.

Michelle likes dogs, squash and relaxing on the weekend by buying a coffee and going for a walk.

Sophie Antognelli

Psychologist

Sophie Antognelli (M Psych (Clinical), B Psych (Hons – First Class) is passionate about working alongside individuals and families to live more full lives, overcoming difficulties they may face.

Having completed her Masters in Clinical Psychology, Sophie has skills in performing diagnostic assessments and treatment across a wide range of issues across the lifespan including anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, psychotic disorders and perfectionism.

Sophie’s interests are in child and adolescent mental health are emotion regulation issues and anxiety. Her experience working at Rivendell Child and Adolescent Unit at Concord Hospital, being an Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) Therapist (working with children with special needs) and postgraduate training has equipped her with the ability to connect with children and their families.

Sophie is interested in working with her adult clients to regain quality of life through early psychosis intervention, the management of symptoms of depression and anxiety, as well as the broader clinical issues of perfectionism, adjustment to life stressors and low self-esteem. She developed these interests across her work in both inpatient and outpatient hospital settings.

Alongside her clinical work, Sophie is also involved in a number of research projects exploring new approaches to anxiety disorders – with specific interests in investigating potential new avenues for addressing unhelpful thought patterns in health anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and hoarding disorder.

While Sophie draws on her research experience to provide an evidence-based approach to treatment, she is also a warm and caring therapist who enjoys the privilege of hearing people’s stories and working flexibly with them towards living meaningful and fulfilling lives.

Sophie has a special interest in:

•  Child psychology
•  Psychotic disorders
•  Perfectionism
•  Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
•  Health anxiety
•  Emotion dysregulation
•  Effects of media on behavior (particularly video games)
•  Schema development & treatment in Trauma
•  Adolescent mental health

Sophie enjoys bush walking, reading and spending time with her dogs.

 

Sarah Hindle

Psychologist

Sarah Hindle (M Psych (Clinical), B Psych Sci (Hons), Grad Dip Psych) brings her warmth,
wisdom and rapport to the individuals and families she sees; the knowledge that a strong
and collaborative therapeutic relationship is foundational to the successful outcome of any
intervention. 

Sarah’s clinical training has equipped her to diagnose, assess and treat psychological disorders and she has experience working in a variety of settings (private practice, inpatient facility, secondary school). Sarah is passionate about providing individualised evidence-
based treatment in a time-effective manner and uses a range of treatment modalities including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT). 

Sarah has experience working with adolescents, adults and families facing a range of mental health difficulties including depression, anxiety, attachment and parenting issues, eating disorders and the management of stressful life events and adjusting to change. As a former classical musician, Sarah also has a particular interest in the treatment of musical
performance-related anxiety, a topic on which she has delivered individual therapy and psycho-educational seminars. Sarah also has a particular interest in working with children/adolescents and families facing challenges related to learning difficulties and
attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Psychological research projects conducted by Sarah have included an investigation of intensive parenting practices as they relate to attachment theory, and the lived experience of parenting a neuro-diverse child (e.g. managing own mental health, negotiating socio-
cultural messages about raising a child with a neurodevelopmental disorder, experience of
stigma).

Sarah is committed to a variety of professional development activities such as reviewing the
psychological treatment literature, peer consultation, and regular supervision to make sure her clients receive the highest standard of treatment.

Sarah has a special interest in:

•   Adolescent mental health
•   Anxiety (e.g. excessive shyness or worry),
•   Clinical perfectionism (e.g. overworking and unrealistic standards),
•   Performance anxiety (e.g. musical performance anxiety),
•   School difficulties,
•   Parenting support for families of children/adolescents diagnosed with ADHD,
•   Adjustment and relocation
(e.g. cross-cultural, Defence).

Although downtime as a mum of older children and teens is challenging, Sarah recharges by going on micro-dates with her partner, listening to classical music and Sunday morning walks with her labradoodle Reg.

Jessica Tilbrook

Dietitian

Jessica Tilbrook (BNutDiet) is an Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD) with a passion for people, their stories, and understanding their relationship with food.

Jess has completed a Bachelor in Nutrition and Dietetics with Flinders University, and has since gone on to train in disordered eating, intuitive eating and mindfulness.

Since graduating she has worked in the acute, sub-acute and private sectors, including aged care, rehab and mental health specialties. Most significantly, she has spent three years managing Dietetic services across QLD, NSW and ACT for a large non-for profit.

Jess respects body diversity and understands that health looks different on everybody. She loves to empower clients to live a healthful life, in a way that promotes autonomy and dignity, and is true to their values, and believes good nutritional care should be inclusive, and delivered in a compassionate and holistic way.

Jess has a special interest in food and body image concerns, including disordered eating, eating disorders, chronic dieting and emotional eating, as well as polycystic ovarian syndrome and women’s health. While her diverse professional background has also allowed for strong medical nutrition therapy skills, including management of complex gastrointestinal disorders, kidney disease and liver disease.

Jessica is a current member of the Dietitians Association Eating Disorder Interest Group.

Jessica has a special interest in:

•   General nutrition
•   Women’s health
•   Disordered eating
•   Eating disorders
•   Eating disorder awareness
•   Emotional eating
•   Chronic dieting
•   Medical nutrition therapy (diabetes, gastrointestinal disorders, allergy/intolerance)

Away from work, she loves cooking and trying out new cuisines.

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