Irritable bowel syndrome is a disorder of the gut-brain axis and it is important that we look at mental health when it comes to long-term management.
When you have IBS you will often be anxious around social situations and food choices. This anxiety drives what we call the ‘fight or flight’ pathway and will lead to digestive symptoms (regardless of what you eat!).
We also know from research that there is a link between depression and low mood and digestive symptoms. Even your gut microbiota can be altered!
For years, I have referred my clients to Kelly Watkins, a cognitive behavioural therapist and psychologist. So, I thought it was about time we had her on the team properly!
Over the time working together, Kelly has shown how she truly understands the impact of IBS for her clients and uses the practical tool of CBT to teach them how to ‘retrain’ their thought patterns and avoid this fight or flight result.
Kelly Watkins is a qualified Cognitive Behavioural Therapist (CBT, BABCP accredited) and is an HCPC registered Forensic Psychologist with over 12 years’ experience.
Through her career Kelly has built a wide range of experience from working in the UK’s National Health Service to the National Prison Service, as well as private healthcare and community mental health services.
I am passionate about helping individuals make changes in their life, so they are able to live the life they want or once lived. I wholeheartedly contribute to the movement of ending the stigma around mental health and making a positive difference in this world.Kelly Watkins
DPsych – in progress (completion due June 2023)
Practitioner Programme in Forensic Psychology PgD – Cardiff Metropolitan University – 2019
PGDip in Cognitive Psychology – University of Hertfordshire – 2016
MSc in Forensic Psychology – London Metropolitan University – 2011
BSC Hons in Psychology and Criminology – Nottingham Trent University – 2010
Visiting Lecturer at the University of Hertfordshire – September 2019 – Present
Forensic Psychologist for Cygnet Healthcare – December 2019 – January 2021
Psychotherapist and Forensic Psychologist at Wensum Unit at HMP Wayland – January 2019 – December 2019
Psychotherapist and Trainee Forensic Psychologist at Wensum Unit at HMP Wayland – February 2018 – January 2019
Associate/ Cognitive Behavioural Therapist at Marylebone Centre for Psychological Therapies – May 2016 – Present
Assistant Psychologist at St Andrews Healthcare – December 2014 – February 2018
Trainee High Intensity Therapist at Healthy Minds, IAPT NHS Hertfordshire Foundation Trust – July 2015 – May 2016
Life Management Skills Practitioner at West Essex Mind – December 2014 – July 2015
Mind Associate at Mind Brentwood – September 2014 -May 2016
Recovery Worker at CRI Subwize – June 2014 – December 2014
Activity Coordinator at Partnerships in Care Ltd – January 2012 – June 2014
Honorary Assistant Psychologist at Partnerships In Care Ltd – October 2012 – January 2014
Health Care Worker at Partnerships in Care Ltd – January 2011 – January 2012
Project Developer/Administrator at Human Relations Network (HRN) – November 2008 – January 2011
Mentor and E-Mentor at SOVA – November 2009 – July 2010