PSYCHOTHERAPY FOR CHILDREN/ADOLESCENTS AND THEIR FAMILIES
TREATMENT SPECIALIZATIONS include:
- Early and Middle Childhood Disorders
- Pre-adolescent and Adolescent Problems
- Special Needs Children and Advocacy Issues
- Parenting and Family Issues
- Oppositional and Defiant Behaviors, Aggression
- Attention-Deficit /Hyperactivity Disorder
- Adjustment Problems ( for example to divorce, death of a parent, school change)
- Toilet Training Problems
- Depression and Anxiety,
- Affective Lability
- Grief and Mourning
- Autism-Spectrum Related Problems, including Asperger's syndrome
- School Based Problems
EARLY AND MIDDLE CHILDHOOD DISORDERS
Q: What do we meant by EARLY AND MIDDLE CHILDHOOD DISORDERS?
A: This term refers to behavioral and social-emotional difficulties emerging during the preschool and elementary school years, spanning approximately the ages from two to ten.
Q: What kinds of treatments are generally recommended?
A: Prior to treatment an EVALUATION of the child's difficulties provides a solid diagnostic basis for therapeutic recommendations. Evaluations can be very brief or they can extend over a number of sessions, depending on the complexity of the problems. The TREATMENT APPROACH offered here is INTEGRATIVE: the goal is to coordinate diverse treatments in order to gain optimal therapeutic effectiveness. This, psycho-dynamic, cognitive, behavioral, and family orientations are seen a complementary and are systematically combined into a coherent treatment approach. As such, interventions are tailored to the particular needs and unique concerns of individual children and their families. Duration of treatment is variable ranging from anywhere from three months to long term involvement depending on the nature and severity of the child's problems. At times CONSULTATIONS are indicated as part of a child's treatment. Teacher and school consultations which may involve on-site observations, participation in IEP meetings, are the most common. Consultations help important persons in the child's life to better understand the child's difficulties and to make adjustments in their expectations and reactions in order to effect positive change.
Q: Why a SPECIALTY APPROACH to Early and Middle Childhood Disorders?
A: There are several pertinent reasons:
*Specialization allows for a comprehensive approach to the developmental concerns and tasks unique to this age group.
*Since children in this age group are still closely tied to their parents, many changes can be directly effected by their parents. this means that parental involvement is frequently desirable.
*Recent changes in our society confront young children with major like stressors and with tasks that challenge their competence to the limits. Normal developmental progress can be exceedingly difficult
under these circumstances.
*Troubled young children frequently find it difficult to put their concerns into words. this can make it hard, even for the most caring parent, to help a child who is distressed.
*A natural means of communication and therapy for this age group is found in play, games, art, and stories.
SPECIAL NEEDS CHILDREN
Q: Why "Special Needs Children"?
A: *Special needs children present with needs that are out of the ordinary.
*Special needs children make parenting more challenging and more difficult.
*Special needs children involve parents in school, community, medical and rehabilitative services.
*Special needs children present the parents with opportunities for personal growth and transformation.
*Special needs children create unique marital, financial, and environmental challenges.
Q: What conditions are associated with Special Needs?
A: *DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES impede, slow or skew the course of normal development. These include mental retardation, autism, Asperger's disorder, and pervasive developmental delays.
*CHRONIC ILLNESS and PERMANENT INJURY pose challenges to child and family, which may impact on social, emotional and intellectual growth.
*POST INJURY REHABILITATION raises many issues in adaptation, self-esteem, and resilience.
*SERIOUS CHRONIC EMOTIONAL DISORDERS,demand major adaptations from family members and the presence of additional supports and safeguards.
* LANGUAGE AND SPEECH DELAYS
Q: How does this change the Parents' Role?
A: In many ways the tasks for parents stay the same. Every child needs to feel loved; every child wants to belong; every child needs to feel special. All children need to find their unique role in the family.
On the other hand ........
*Growing up for a special needs child requires extra Parental Support and Major Adaptations. This involves a lot of extra work and time.
*Parents have to act as Advocates for their child in government, school, and medical systems. Parents have to become proficient at dealing with many different persons and organizations.
*Including a child with special needs into the family requires parents to re-configure priorities and to re-balance personal and family obligations.
HEALTHY DEVELOPMENT OF PRE-ADOLESCENTS AND ADOLESCENTS
Q: What does raising healthy pre-adolescents and adolescents involve?
A: *This phase of development is often a time of stress, confusion and conflict between children and parents.
*Badly resolved or unresolved issues put adolescents at risk for continued social and emotional difficulties in later adolescence and early adulthood.
Q: What are some of the most frequent difficulties in pre-adolescence and adolescence?
A: *Lowered self-esteem
*Increased anxiety and depression
*Negative feelings about their changing bodies
*Peer Pressure and peer related conflicts
*Conflicts related to healthy assertiveness
*School problems and achievement difficulties
*Difficulties re-defining family relationships
*Difficulties finding a good balance between independence and dependence
*Acting out and rebellion
Q: What is the role of the parents in therapy:
A: *Often parents can play a positive role in this process and more often than not an adolescent welcomes the presence of parental input.
*At times, the psychologist becomes a mediator, communicator , and facilitator between the adolescent and his or her parents.