Child Behaviour, Child Stress and Trauma Play Therapy

Child Behaviour, Child Stress and Trauma

Just like adults, children can also benefit from therapy. Psychotherapy can help children develop important interpersonal and problem-solving skills that will stand them in good stead for the rest of their lives. Therapy can also help a child to deal with behavioural issues that affect family relationships and school performance.

Life can be tough for young ones, what with peer pressure, homework, school bullying and exam stress. A transition, such as a new baby in the house, divorce, death of a grandparent, moving to a new home, abuse or illness can cause a young child severe mental anguish.

Many young children are not equipped to deal with stress and express their emotions in a healthy way yet, and therefore they act out. Certain behaviours, though merely a cry for help, might be socially unacceptable and could have devastating results.

behavioural issues that warrant intervention include sudden bedwetting, developmental delays or regressions, significant drop in grades, social isolation or withdrawal, aggression, appetite changes, changes in sleep patterns, tardiness or absenteeism at school, eating disorders, mood swings, frequent complaints about feeling ill without a medical cause,  or substance use. Therapy can help prevent, or deal with these behavioural issues.

Cognitive behavioural therapy is the most common treatment option for children with behavioural issues, as well as teenagers who struggle to cope with stress, are feeling anxious or depressed. This type of therapy helps to restructure thoughts to produce effective, positive mindsets. It is often achieved along with learning and practicing stress management techniques, coping skills and relaxation skills.  In addition many other approaches are used and which one works is really a function of preference and learning style.

If you are looking for a counsellor or psychologist who offers behavioural psychology for children to address your child's stress, anxiety or behavioural issues you may want to search the directory to find a professional whose approach will suit you best.

Children today are exposed to much more trauma than we were twenty or thirty years ago, and that's why child trauma counselling is such an important tool to help them cope. Once off events, such as sexual abuse, domestic violence, bullying, life-threatening illnesses, natural disasters, or war can leave a child scarred for life.

Long-term exposure to poverty, verbal abuse or milder types of abuse are traumatic too, in fact that can be as devastating to a child as a single catastrophic event.

As with adults, every child has a different way of dealing with similar circumstances or events. Not every person who experiences the same event will become traumatized, but exposure to trauma can result in a variety of symptoms including nightmares, bedwetting, anxiety, depression, disdain for authority, poor grades, moodswings, substance abuse, and self-harm.

Both cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and a range of other therapies can be helpful in treating children who have been exposed to short term trauma. Therapists will usually work with the child on a one-on-one basis to help the child restructure negative thought patterns and self esteem (in the case of abuse, etc.) before calling in the family for family counselling. Family counselling is a great way for the family to find common ground, build problem-solving skills and to help the parents to re-establish themselves as the authority figures in the home.

If you are looking for a counsellor or psychologist with specialized traing in trauma counselling for children you may want to search the directory to find a professional whose approach will suit you best.

Play Therapy, Psycho-Educational Groups

Play therapy uses the client's internal self-healing mechanisms to access unconscious and conscious experiences. The therapist forms a relationship with the client and encourages him or her to explore life events that affect his or her current life experience.

During play therapy, the therapist works at the client's pace. Talking is secondary to play in this form of therapy, and as such the client is encouraged to play while the therapist observes.

Play Therapy is suitable for adults too, as it helps them to relearn self-exploration, which enhances physical and cognitive behaviours. Play therapy gives children and adults freedom, increased creativity and life experience.

If you are looking for a therapist who offers Play Therapy, please browse our list of practitioners below..

Psychoeducational Groups bring together different people who are experiencing similar  issues, to share the therapeutic experience. Whether the therapy is for interpersonal relationships or shared issues, Psychoeducational Groups can help clients reach a variety of therapeutic outcomes.

During Psychoeducational Groups therapy, participants will discuss their issues with other parents who have similar issues. The group setting provides a supportive environment, and a sense of belonging.  

Psychoeducational Groups provides participants with information and resources on specific topics. The groups are structured and provide specific modules or topics for discussion, with the intention to provide support for parents who are experiencing the same issues.

If you are looking for a therapist who offers Psycho-Educational Groups, please browse our list of practitioners below..

Janet Walker

M.A., RCC
Children Has parenting your child become a crisis situation for you?   Is your child acting out after a traumatic experience such as a separation, divorce, or loss of family member?  Is your child... Read more