Psychological Health & Development Associates, LLC

Dr. Kent Sunderland

Hello! I am a licensed clinical psychologist who works with people age 18 and up using an eclectic, culturally sensitive, and individualized approach in psychotherapy with individuals, couples, and groups. In any therapy work, I strive to build a strong, trusting professional relationship in which you can feel welcome, understood, and safe.


I have extensive experience helping people who are struggling with relationships, anxiety, depression and trauma, as well as those seeking support during particularly difficult times in their lives. I have provided treatment in multiple settings to individuals struggling with recovery from substance abuse, creating plans for relapse prevention and treating the underlying problems that can lead to alcohol or drug abuse. I also have experience in providing affirming and informed care for the LGBTQ community, including the psychotherapy and evaluations required for individuals seeking gender affirming surgeries.


I completed my Doctoral Degree in Clinical Psychology (PsyD) at the University of Hartford in 2014. Prior to that, I earned a Master’s Degree in Clinical/Counseling Psychology at La Salle University in 2008, and earned my Bachelor’s Degree at La Salle University in 2004. During the course of my training and professional career, I have worked in college counseling centers, a large agency providing primary medical care and mental health treatment, and an inpatient psychiatric hospital. In all of these settings, I’ve built a reputation as a caring and thoughtful treatment provider who combines science, art, honesty, and humor, to tailor treatment to the needs of each individual.  

My Specialties:


  • General Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Stress
  • Life Transitions and Adjustment Issues
  • Marital Problems
  • Interpersonal and Relationship Problems
  • LGBTQ Issues
  • Transgender Issues including pre-surgery evaluation and therapy
  • Men's Health Issues
  • Abuse and Trauma
  • Grief and Loss
  • ​Substance Abuse

Dr. Jyothi Vayalakkara

I am a licensed clinical neuropsychologist with over 10 years of experience working with a diverse clientele, including the severe and persistently mentally ill, across a wide variety of settings, including an inpatient psychiatric setting, outpatient settings and skilled nursing facilities. I have worked in various capacities including administrative role/s as Director of a brain injury program and Director of acute service program, amongst others, for the state of CT. I have also worked with a wide spectrum of age groups, including adolescents and the geriatric population. My primary areas of interest include neuropsychological assessments, cognitive rehabilitation from brain injury and individual and group psychotherapy with a special emphasis on cultural and trauma perspectives.


I completed my Doctoral degree in Clinical Neuropsychology in 2001 from Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Fl Florida. I completed my APA approved internship in Neuropsychology from the Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC South Carolina, and a two-year APA-approved fellowship in neuropsychology from New England Medical Center at Tufts University, Boston. In addition, I completed a one-year post-doctoral lectureship series from Harvard Medical School in Boston and a one-year post-doctoral fellowship in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy from Nova Southeastern University in Florida. I obtained my license as a clinical psychologist in 2004. I am currently an Adjunct Faculty Member at University of Hartford, and has have teaching experience spanning a decade, including supervision of doctoral students in Clinical Psychology and interns within an APA approved internship program.


In addition to the above, I have several publications in leading journals, including the International Journal of Neuroscience, and a book chapter in a leading Neuropsychology book utilized in Clinical Psychology doctoral programs. I am also a certified Brain Injury Specialist, and have been an invited speaker at an international neuroscience conference, amongst others. I am also a member of several organizations, including the United Nations, and was the past President of a non-profit group targeting domestic violence amongst South Asian immigrants in Connecticut. I am currently the Convener of the Prejudices, Related Intolerances and Mental Health Committee at the United Nations in New York and am also serving on the Multicultural Advisory Council for the State of CT to improve cultural competency in the state in the mental health arena.  

My Specialties:


  • Assessment & Treatment of Brain Injury

  • Cultural/ Acculturation Concerns

  • Abuse and Trauma

  • Grief and Loss Issues

  • General Anxiety

  • Panic & Phobias

  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

  • Stress

  • Adjustment Issues

  • Depression

  • Marital and Family Problems

  • Interpersonal/ Relationship Problems

  • Coping with Chronic Medical Illness

  • Midlife Concerns

Dr. Janine Swanson

I am a licensed clinical psychologist which means that I have my Doctorate in Psychology representing 6 years of doctoral level education and training including an American Psychological Association (APA) approved Internship and Post-Doctoral training years. I received my Doctoral Degree in Psychology from Antioch New England Graduate School in New Hampshire in 2005, and I completed my internship and post-doctoral training at the University of Massachusetts Mental Health Services. I also hold a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Wesleyan University. I opened this practice, Psychological Health & Development Associates in 2010.


In developing my own career, I have alternately sought out experiences to broaden my perspective, and to deepen my understanding of human psyche and presses of environmental factors on our growth and development. I have assessed and counseled children, adolescents, adults, and geriatrics in a variety of settings including but not limited to primary and higher education, assisted living and skilled nursing facilities, general medical practice, and private practice. I have worked with a wide array of people including those experiencing relatively mild adjustment problems associated with life transitions to people with severe, chronic mental illness.


In addition to clinical work, I am also an experienced organizational consultant and business executive. As an organizational consultant, I assess businesses and organizations to resolve weaknesses in their systems and leverage their strengths, advise on recruiting decisions, and provide executive coaching. I have also served as a Vice President of Behavioral Health Services for a major health care provider in Connecticut managing all behavioral health programs. 

My Specialties:


  • General Anxiety

  • Panic & Phobias

  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

  • Stress

  • Life Transitions & Adjustment Issues

  • Career Development

  • Depression

  • Marital and Family Problems

  • Interpersonal/ Relationship Problems

  • Abuse and Trauma

  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD/ADD)

  • Grief and Loss Issues

  • Smoking Cessation

  • Coping with Chronic Medical Illness

  • Midlife Concerns​​

"Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself."

​Leo Tolstoy

Dr. Dorica Nevin

Welcome! I am a licensed clinical psychologist, with 25+ years of experience. Gradually, I have honed my interests and studies in the area of individual therapies. I have worked in a wide array of settings including an inpatient psychiatric hospital with both adolescents and adults, residential treatment centers for children, outpatient clinics with clients of all age, skilled nursing facilities with geriatric populations, as well as private practice. I primarily work with adolescents and adults, but also enjoy working with children and their parents, and I have a special interest in midlife and women’s issues. I have 10+ years of experience supervising psychology graduate students and newly graduated psychologists as well. 

I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology in 1981 from the University of Central Florida, (called Florida Tech at that time) and my Doctoral Degree in Clinical Psychology in 1988 from the University of Denver. I completed my APA approved internship training at Connecticut Valley Hospital, and obtained my license to practice in 1990. In addition to traditional training, I have also completed a 3 year Leadership Training Program with world renowned Jungian Analyst, Marion Woodman. Her book, Addiction to Perfection, is widely revered as a pivotal work in understanding the Feminine and addictions in analytic psychology. In addition to traditional methods, I also provide Jungian informed psychotherapy, dream work, and BodySoul groups and workshops. I belong to the CT Association for Jungian Psychology, and I am currently serving on the International Board of the Marion Woodman Foundation. 

In addition to practicing psychotherapy, I have also authored, edited and produced the journal, Psyche’s Journey Opening to the Mystery. I am currently in the process of reworking the original print version into an online magazine. In the coming year, I plan to offer study groups, dream groups, films, and workshops related to my interest in the work of Carl Jung, Marion Woodman and Robert Bly in our Wethersfield office. Please see my personal website for more information about Psyche’s Journey. 

My Specialties:

 

  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • General Anxiety and Panic
  • Depression
  • Interpersonal/ Relationship Problems
  • Adolescent and Teen Problems
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD/ADD)
  • Grief and Loss Issues
  • Coping with Chronic Medical Illness
  • Midlife Concerns and Life Transitions
  • Women's Issues
  • Group Therapy
  • Journaling, Dream work and Art Therapy

Our doctors take a personalized approach.


This practice was built around a mission to have personalized patient care at the core. It sometimes feels that the world around us is growing more impersonal and we are losing a sense of community with large companies and clinics focusing more on the bottom line than on the people they are meant to help or serve. In this practice, we return the emphasis to you… to your health and development in pursuit of your goals.