Kids therapy is an important aspect to increase the development and mental growth of children. Living in a society where mental health treatment is not welcomed or appreciated; it is really hard for therapy, especially child therapy. Taking proper therapy in time can change lives. Adults think that seeking mental health treatment is unnecessary; they find it so difficult to talk about!
And for kids? A big NO. Maybe they don’t even think about it. Something stops them from choosing this option for their own betterment – “What will other people say?”
Thus, at present, many children remain untreated and neglected.
That is why getting child therapy is very important for our little ones and parents too. The COVID- 19 Pandemic has made our life more difficult to manage our emotions and deal with loss, grief, and deaths of closed ones on top of everything. Life has become really hard in this lockdown, and child therapy sessions are more needed than ever to focus on our child’s positive growth. It can help boost self-confidence, rebuild self-esteem, and set an optimistic view of life.
What is Kids Therapy?
Kids therapy is a basic technique of creating a safe space for a child while using tools or methods in an empathetic environment to make some changes. These changes occur in behavioral patterns; to bring a remarkable change in the way of thinking, feelings.
Like adults, children also need counseling and therapy sessions to get emotional support in hard times. The child therapists bring out probable solutions through an assessment to ensure that the child clients understand the circumstances and have support.
A kid might need child therapy if they experience:
- Divorce or separation;
- Death of a loved one;
- Sexual abuse;
- Emotional abuse;
- Physical abuse;
- Family or child relocation;
- Substance abuse or addiction in the family.
Ways to find out a child’s mental health issues:
You can see a few warning symptoms like persistence, sadness, withdrawing, or avoiding social interactions in two or more weeks. Hurting oneself or talking about hurting oneself.
A few more signs and symptoms are including:
- Changing Eating or Sleeping Habits.
- Engaging in Destructive Behaviors.
- Extreme Feelings of Sadness or Worry.
- Behaving Badly.
- Isolating From Friends.
- Increased Physical Complaints.
- Talks About Death Frequently.
You should check how often a behavior occurs, how long it lasts, or the mood or behavior’s intensity. This will help help you to decide if it is a problem. After that, you can consult with a mental health specialist, including a psychiatrist or psychologist.
Effectiveness of child therapy:
Those parents who have taken their kids to child therapists know exactly how effective it is! Point to be noted, those children (especially those who were in their adolescents) learned how to deal with emotions and other life situations as they grew up.
The parents were also able to understand better how to cooperate or react in certain situations with their children. Life just got so much easier than before!
As child therapists work on behavior and thinking patterns, it is very effective to better shift into some necessary changes to the parent-child relationship. As soon as you decide to do a checkup for your child’s mental health, you will see the effectiveness.
Essential Ways to get Benefits by Kids Therapy:
Your child and you also, as a parent, can be benefited by getting child therapy.
- Through assessments and diagnosis, you will acknowledge the mental health state or any kind of disorder of your child. You will acknowledge your child’s mental health state or any disorder. It is key to get the proper treatment.
- Various therapies like Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), trauma-focused CBT (TF-CBT), Depersonalization Disorder Therapy (DST), light therapy, art therapy, music therapy, movement therapy, etc. can really help your child overcome difficulties.
- Child Therapy has the power to create a bond between children and parents as they come to learn about gaps and underlying issues they need to do work on. Most of the parents are not aware of it.
- The child therapist suggests solutions and prescribes medicines or therapy (if they need any), which helps overcome difficulties.
When to seek kids therapy?
Sometimes kids also need professional help like the adults in stressful times. And the pandemic is just bringing more chaos and stress in the lives of our little ones.
As a parent, whenever you find some change in your kid’s behavioral patterns that make you worried, you should know it is time to consult with an expert trained well in this sector. To help them navigate through such hard times, kid’s therapy can work very effectively.
How does child therapy work?
There are several methods of conducting therapy for a child. A child therapist must do it according to the age of the kid and some assessment tool. Kids go through various learning processes by playing, talking, drawing– when it comes to younger ones. For teens, some other methods talking and sharing experiences that lead to a focus on solving problems.
Thus, children make progress to build up healthy ways of thinking and behavioral habits. Therapists help them to create a positive attitude and show them how they can achieve the goal.
Parents are also involved in these sessions because the change in kids is not possible without engaging them. So they also learn a lot of things by taking therapy sessions along with their kid.
As both of you learn about the problems and get ready for the therapy these are steps you might need to follow every time you visit:
- Describing how you feel– Talking about feelings and putting them into words. When a kid talks about their feelings, they become more aware and expressive about how they feel.
- Engaging in activities– By drawing or playing kids get to learn a lot. Another great way of learning is mindfulness and also by doing breathing exercises a kid learns how to calm themselves in stressful times.
What does the child therapist do?
Therapists use various psychological methods and procedures to provide support to kids to learn. They help kids to bring back their strengths. Therapy builds strong thinking patterns to construct healthy behavioral habits. A therapist can meet with the only child or parent, even children with their family members.
Preparation for kids for the first session:
- Discuss the therapy process with your child therapist.
- Make your kids feel secure.
- Encourage your kids to express themself.
How to promote your child’s good mental health?
Follow the following seven techniques:
- Give your child unconditional love.
- Nurture confidence and self-esteem.
- Provide guidance and discipline.
- Ensure the surroundings are safe and secure.
- Encourage play opportunities with other children.
- Consult with teachers and caretakers, encouraging and supporting your child.
- Teach your child resiliency.
- You should ensure healthy eating for your kids
Eight Things Every Child Needs:
- Encourage Interaction.
- Offer Physical Affection.
- Provide a Stable Relationship.
- Maintain a Safe, Healthy Home.
- Develop Strong Self Esteem.
- Engage in Conversation.
- Make Music.
- Make Reading a Priority.
How does reading help a child’s cognitive development?
Reading to young children helps to develop cognitive skills. An essential thing you should keep in mind is that you should provide background information on their young world when you begin reading to your child. This procedure helps them gain an understanding of what they see, hear, and read.
Three characteristics of a good children’s book:
- An interesting, relatable story.
- Easy and interesting language is an important criterion of a children’s book.
- The books will be appropriate for multicultural children.
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Best children’s books on mental and emotional health
Practicing Reading books help children grow their imagination to develops their understanding of the world. Also, It enhances them to improve language and listening skills. It makes them understand the written word even as a parent or foster carer reading the book is important for effective child therapy.
7 Essential Books to Help Kids Learn Their Emotional and Mental Health:
Dear parents, consult with a therapist as soon as you feel like your child is struggling and needs kids therapy. It can make your kid’s life better, and you should go for it!
Frequently Asked Question
Q. What age can a child start therapy?
Ans: Scientific evidence shows that kids are most responsive to therapy to change their behavior until age 7. Behavioral psychologist Melanie Fernandez expresses the younger the kids are treated, the longer parents have the skill to set to apply with them.
Q. What questions should I ask my child’s therapist?
Ans: You can ask about their background, working experience with children. Also, you can ask if they deal with the same issues as your child. Initially, you can inform them about the problems or concerns that your child is facing.
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Q. How do I start a therapy session with my child?
Ans: Just keep the bellow mentioned procedure:
- Take a good time to talk and assure your child that they are not in trouble.
- Emphasis your child’s concerns, experiences, and feelings seriously.
- You should be open-minded, be relaxed, and stay authentic.
- Explore their inner feelings through active listening. Provide information about the real world.
- Make clear that a therapist provides help and support.
Q. How do you build confidence in a child?
Ans: Few of the strategies to build confidence, including:
- Model confidence Even if you’re not quite feeling it!
- Don’t get upset about mistakes.
- Please encourage them to try new things.
- Allow kids to fail.
- Praise perseverance.
- Help kids find their feeling.
- Set goals.
Q. How can I help my 4-year-old with his anger?
Ans: Follow the following rules for dealing with an angry child:
- Please Don’t Yell at or Challenge them during an Angry or aggressive moment.
- Don’t try to find out the reasons for being a child during the angry outbursts.
- Pay Attention to Your Feelings.
- Don’t Get Physical with Your Child.
- Take a Different Approach with Younger Kids.
Q. What is the main focus of play therapy?
Ans: A play therapist emphasis on child and find out what is best for their mental health. A play therapy help child to take control of their life to resolve distress. A therapist will make their life comfortable, natural, and familiar.
Some of the Play therapy techniques are listed below:
- Creative visualization.
- Dolls, action figures.
- Arts and crafts.
- Water and sand play.
- Puppets, stuffed animals, and masks.
- Toy phones.