What happens next?

Field of Dandelions The treatment you and your child receive will be based on scientific research and may take several forms depending on the pattern of problems identified.  For most, if not all problems both the parents and the child will need to be involved.

For emotional problems, work is based around helping the child identify the troublesome feelings and developing new ways of thinking, talking about and responding to them.  Help to recover from those times when the new strategies don’t seem to be working and encouragement to recognise when success is on the way is also important.  Techniques such as these have been shown to be the most effective remedies for emotional problem in many scientific studies.

Behavioural problems on the other hand, are better managed by us working closely with the child’s parents to reduce distressing, disruptive angry scenes at home and school by helping them improve their child’s responsiveness to praise and punishment.  Emotional, behavioural and other problems can occur either separately or together.  Our role is to develop treatment programmes designed to meet the specific profile of problems identified in the assessment that fit with your child and family’s needs.

Individual work with children is often needed to help improve their self-esteem and understanding of difficult situations such as family illness, divorce or bereavement, or simply to sustain their motivation during a course of treatment.  With younger children this is likely to be carried out through the medium of play.  For older children and adolescents who are able to express their difficulties verbally it may be appropriate to offer individual sessions to explore problem areas, identify emotional responses and offer training in alternative management strategies.  Our aim is to build on the child’s strengths and encourage them to identify areas of difficulty they would like to explore and/or change.  In between sessions the child may be asked to practise new skills that have been taught in the therapy session, or keep records of their thoughts, feelings and responses to problem situations.  While it is important for the content of the child’s session to remain confidential, we aim to keep parents informed of progress and where appropriate, up to date with new skills that have been taught and practised in the therapy session so that parents are able to reinforce these in the home setting.

Parents may benefit from specific intervention to address low mood and stress.  If this is necessary work can be carried out in couples or on an individual basis.  Parents will have an opportunity to express their feelings and explore strategies for managing behavioural change in themselves and their child.  Practising new strategies outside the therapy session is usually necessary to implement change.

Very occasionally, our assessment may uncover problems that require additional help from elsewhere.   This will be established as soon as possible, either at our initial contact, or through the assessment process following which we will discuss our findings with you and suggest where this help might be found.