Should My Child See A Therapist?
Two of the main reasons I love working with children and adolescents in therapy is how receptive they can be to change and how flexible they can be in making those changes quickly. Sometimes by introducing small changes in the child’s life can lead to a cascade of bigger changes. Individual and family therapy are processes to help your child learn problem-solving strategies and new skills to tackle the challenges that life can bring. Just like an adult, children may need help dealing with different stresses and pressures surrounding them. So, what are the signs that point to reaching out to a licensed psychologist to help your family, and what types of therapy services should you look for in your search for effective treatment?
If you notice some of the following signs or symptoms, please reach out for support:
- Your child or teen tends to worry about most things
- Anxiety or fears, which lead your child not to want to go to school, see friends, or participate in activities they once loved
- Feelings of sadness or hopelessness (take note: children who are depressed may actually appear more frustrated and irritated vs. crying or saying they are sad)
- You notice your child saying they feel more pressure and are overwhelmed more easily, which leads to cycles of stress that seem unmanageable
- If your child experiences trauma, grief, or loss and you observe some of the above symptoms and it seems out of the ordinary
- You notice your child or teen acting out of control and their grades start to drop, or they begin to withdrawal more and isolate from family and peers
- More physical symptoms such as headaches, stomachaches, and physical complaints
- You notice a change in sleep: increased sleepiness or problems going to sleep and/or staying asleep
- If there is a major life transition, such as a divorce, or a move and you notice a change in behavior that seems out of the ordinary
- Alcohol or drug use
In my San Diego family therapy practice, I offer a range of specialized therapy services to help your child and family find success. A significant aspect to my approach is teaching children and parents how to be more preventative and proactive versus constantly reacting to different problems that surface. Prevention is the key to long-term change and helping your child learn how to better manage his/her emotions, thoughts, and behaviors. It is also important to look for a licensed psychotherapist who has training and experience in family therapy and feels comfortable working with the system that surrounds the child you love.