The purpose of therapy for children & teens
Child and adolescent therapy can have a variety of goals, depending on the individual needs of each client. These goals might include:
Improving communication skills
Developing healthier relationships with peers and adults
Learning to identify and express emotions in healthy ways
Improving impulse control, problem-solving, decision-making, and coping skills
Increasing self-esteem and self-worth
Building resilience and a sense of purpose
Addressing feelings of depression, anxiety, and anger
Developing an understanding of their own identity and values
In addition to helping children achieve these goals, therapy can also provide a space for parents or other caregivers to learn more about providing the best possible support for the individual needs of their child. Your provider will work with the child or adolescent in conjunction with the parents so that the client can thrive within the family unit.
When should your child see a therapist?
There are several situations where it may be beneficial to seek out therapy for your child or teen. It can provide support as they navigate through various life transitions, such as moving, changing schools, a family divorce, or the loss of a loved one. Therapy can help children develop healthy coping skills when dealing with bullying or peer pressure, as well as guide them in times of stress.
Common signs that indicate the need for child therapy include:
- Regular outbursts of anger
- Problems with impulse control
- Withdrawal from family and friends
- Difficulty regulating emotions
- Low self-esteem
- Feelings of sadness or hopelessness
- Decline in school performance
- Disruptive behavior at home or school
- Ongoing stress or anxiety
- Substance abuse concerns
If these issues are disrupting your child’s life and causing distress, it may be time to consider therapy. Your Geode provider will assess the child or teen’s behavior and evaluate any signs of underlying mental health conditions, neurological or developmental disorders, or other challenges that may be impacting their well-being.
Forms of child & adolescent therapy
Talk therapy provides a safe space for kids to express their thoughts and feelings and learn how to develop healthy coping strategies. The child-centered approach includes teaching skills in communication, problem-solving, decision-making, emotional regulation, and managing stress.
Play therapy is a form of talk therapy specifically designed for kids who are too young or unable to express their feelings in words. Through play, therapists can help young patients explore emotions, develop new skills, solve problems, and gain insight into their behaviors. Play therapy can take the form of games, storytelling, art, or music.
Art therapy is a type of psychotherapy that uses art materials such as paints, markers, clay, and digital media to help kids express their emotions and gain insight into their behavior. It can be used in conjunction with traditional talk therapy or as a standalone treatment.
Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is a form of treatment that uses positive reinforcement to encourage desired behaviors. ABA therapy is most commonly used to support children with autism and developmental disabilities. Children learn how to recognize their emotions, understand consequences of actions, and develop healthy coping skills.
Find the right mental health provider for your family
At Geode, we understand how important it is to find the right therapist, counselor, or psychiatrist for your child. Our providers are experienced in working with children and adolescents and can provide specialized help and care tailored to their needs. Contact us today to learn more about our individualized approach to child therapy and get started on a path to success with your child or teen. Start by finding a Geode location near you or by booking an appointment online.
If you are in crisis and in need of immediate support
Please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by dialing 988 or text the Crisis Text Line by texting HELLO to 741741