Patient Demographic

Pediatric and Adult individuals whose primary presenting problem is Acute Stress Disorder (ASD) or Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  Acute Stress Disorder symptomatology is similar to PTSD, but occurs within an immediate, brief timeframe after the traumatic event and may not develop into PTSD.   Trauma in this context includes witnessing or experiencing threatened or actual death or injury (extreme circumstances), or hearing of a loved one being exposed.  By definition, the resulting repetitive intrusions only relate to the trauma content and can manifest as reliving the experience via memories, flashbacks, nightmares, and emotional/physical responses to reminders.  One of the primary symptoms is often extraordinary and persistent efforts to avoid reminders and triggering stimuli of the trauma.  There can also be hypervigilance, difficulty experiencing positive emotions, and overly negative beliefs about the world.  The individual's neurological, cognitive, and behavioral symptoms are present throughout the day, every day, and are impairing psychological, occupational, and/or social functioning.


Examples of Trauma

Examples of trauma could include physical or sexual assault/violence, abuse, shooting, transportation accident, natural disaster, robbery, first-responder situations, war casualties, etc.

(Note:  Many individuals have had an experience or situation they consider traumatic at some point in their lives; however, you might imagine traumatic experiences on a continuum where most life events are not quite to the catastrophic and dangerous end of the spectrum (serious injury or life-threatening).  The less threatening or dangerous traumatic situations (e.g. divorce, stressful job, difficult relationship) often have effects that manifest in non-PTSD ways (e.g. depression, interpersonal struggles).  Another distinction is that it can be stressful or painful for anyone to voluntarily think back or even to have a sudden memory of a traumatic event, but with PTSD when the individual is trying desperately to live in the present moment (sometimes due to avoidance), they become flooded with repeated, involuntary, trauma memories and flashbacks, throughout the day, every day without much reprieve. 

Non-PTSD effects can cause problems with attachment, interpersonal effectiveness, trust, emotion regulation, Depressive and Mood Disorders, Borderline Personality Disorder, etc.  In the case that these issues are present in addition to PTSD, PTSD is usually the primary issue.  Dr. Curiel only treats the symptoms of PTSD, but can provide a referral for other symptoms and conditions when appropriate.  Dr. Curiel can also help you clarify between the above presenting problems and PTSD and help you find evidence-based treatment to fit your needs.)



Teletherapy Option (online video therapy)

This option is available to individuals in MO, KS, and KY who may not be within driving distance or for those with busy schedules. No commute time needed and one less place to be. Although a private space is required, it can also be more convenient for those that would otherwise require child care.

  • Traditional Outpatient (one individual therapy session per week) and
  • Informal Intensive Outpatient (two or more individual sessions per week) are offered within a private practice setting.
  • One-time Skills Consultation - Typically reserved for those in rural settings where access to care is limited and a home visit is beneficial.  This service is NOT psychotherapy.
  • Professional Presentations & Consultations - please inquire by emailing office@allayptsd.com



Rationale for Treatment

Evidenced-based treatments (where research demonstrates effectiveness) are often considered short-term compared to conventional talk/process or insight-oriented therapies that can last for years.  EBTs allow for quicker amelioration of symptoms and less time and costs required in the long-term.  Of course, the severity of impairment or complexity in presentation can sometimes require a longer treatment episode; however, many of Dr. Curiel's adult patients discharge within 4 months of weekly sessions.



  • Self-Pay Fee per *45-50min therapy session hour:  $130**
  • *Therapy session hours are typically 45-50 minutes; however, at times exposures may require 60+ minutes.
  • **If you cannot afford this fee, please inquire with Dr. Curiel if she has any available reduced fee slots (they are limited).
  • Per your intake paperwork, you will sign a  form stating you agree to provide a 24 hour notice when you cancel an appointment; otherwise, a 50% cancelation fee will be charged.  In the event of an emergency, this fee will be waived.
  • You can try to seek reimbursement independently from your insurance company with a superbill provided by Dr. Curiel for sessions.  You would be responsible for obtaining approval and submitting the superbills whereby you would be paid by insurance company directly.  Or with a release of information, Dr. Curiel can advocate for you up front with your insurance company to try to obtain a single case agreement between you and your insurance company whereby you would also submit superbills and they would reimburse you directly. 


Payment Options

  • Check or Ivy Pay electronic payment via debit, credit, HSA (no cash please)
  • Insurance is not accepted; however, a superbill can be provided if you would like to seek reimbursement from your insurance company (approval required).



Shanda Curiel, PsyD

Dr. Curiel is a Licensed Psychologist who specializes in Cognitive-Behavioral and Exposure Therapies.  Approaches utilized by Dr. Curiel for ASD and PTSD are Cognitive Processing Therapy and Prolonged Exposure.  Supplemental interventions and skills may be implemented from Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.  Dr. Curiel has received extensive training in evidence-based treatments for anxiety disorders, implementing these approaches in various levels of care.  She also teaches graduate courses on the diagnosis and treatment of PTSD.


Relevant Clinical Experience & Education

  • OCD & Anxiety Psychologist - Allay PTSD, DBA, Kansas City, MO
  • OCD/ERP Consultant - Resilience Treatment Center, Los Angeles, CA
  • OCD/Anx Specialist - Resilience Treatment Ctr PHP/IOP, Los Angeles, CA
  • OCD Psychologist - Private Practice, Los Angeles, CA & KC, MO & LS, MO
  • Assistant Professor - Avila University, Kansas City, MO
  • Clinical Psychologist - Truman Medical Center IP, Kansas City, MO
  • Psych Resident - Center for Psychological Health Wellbeing, Aurora, MO
  • Psych Intern - CAU Goodman Psychological Services Center, Miami, FL
  • PsyD - School of Professional Psychology at Forest Insitute, Springfield, MO
  • MA - School of Professional Psychology at Forest Insitute, Springfield, MO
  • BA - University of Texas, San Antonio, TX
  • CA Inactive:  28647


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North & South Locations


1201 N.W. Briarcliff Parkway, Suite 200 2nd Floor, Kansas City, MO 64116 

*Clock tower building.  Enter from elevator onto 2nd floor.  You'll see a receptionist.


204A NE Douglas St. Lee's Summit, MO 64063

*Neighborhood is primarily residential.  Tan, converted building.  Last entrance.

Contact Information

Email is preferred due to limited time during business hours (in sessions) to return calls. office@allayptsd.com (816) 663.9623


Hours vary and are by appointment.