Should my child see a therapist? : Counseling Corner
Dawn Womack, MSW, LCSW, BACS
Child and Adolescent Counseling, LLC
Serving East & West Baton Rouge, Ascension, Livingston & St. James Parishes
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Should my child see a therapist?

by Dawn Womack on 01/04/12

I ran across a really good atricle today that addresses what a lot of parents want to know...should my child see a therapist?

http://kidshealth.org/parent/positive/family/finding_therapist.html

Some highlights from the website that interested me:

Signs that a child may benefit from seeing a psychologist or licensed therapist include:

  • developmental delay in speech, language, or toilet training
  • learning or attention problems (such as ADHD)
  • behavioral problems (such as excessive anger, acting out, bedwetting or eating disorders)
  • a significant drop in grades, particularly if your child normally maintains high grades
  • episodes of sadness, tearfulness, or depression
  • social withdrawal or isolation
  • being the victim of bullying or bullying other children
  • decreased interest in previously enjoyed activities
  • overly aggressive behavior (such as biting, kicking, or hitting)
  • sudden changes in appetite (particularly in adolescents)
  • insomnia or increased sleepiness
  • excessive school absenteeism or tardiness
  • mood swings (e.g., happy one minute, upset the next)
  • development of or an increase in physical complaints (such as headache, stomachache, or not feeling well) despite a normal physical exam by your doctor
  • management of a serious, acute, or chronic illness
  • signs of alcohol, drug, or other substance use (such as solvents or prescription drug abuse)
  • problems in transitions (following separation, divorce, or relocation)
  • bereavement issues
  • custody evaluations
  • therapy following sexual, physical, or emotional abuse or other traumatic events

And the different strategies that therapists use is a helpful section. My most common is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

This type of therapy is often helpful with kids and teens who are depressed, anxious, or having problems coping with stress.

Cognitive behavioral therapy restructures negative thoughts into more positive, effective ways of thinking. It can include work on stress management strategies, relaxation training, practicing coping skills, and other forms of treatment.

There is lots of good information about finding the right therapist for your child in this article. 

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