There are a number of therapeutic approaches that are used in cases where children are suffering from loss or trauma. When seeking help for your child, you should expect to encounter more than one of these approaches. The approach used depends on your child’s needs, as well as, the training and style of the therapist you visit. An observation done by a professional therapist will determine which approach you and your child require. Each approach is effective when used properly and in the appropriate circumstances. The approaches include:
This involves helping a child face a particular memory by talking through the parts of the memory that seem to upset the child most. This approach is usually used where teenagers and older children are concerned.
This type of therapy works to recognize why a child’s relationship with his or her parents and other family members is important. This way, the therapist is able to know more about the child from different family members, which can be helpful during the recovery process. This also enables the family members to get better at supporting the child’s recovery.
With Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, small successes or rewards are used as motivators, replacing negative feelings, behaviors and thoughts with positive or useful ones.
This method of therapy might include games, puppets, art or play-acting. This approach is usually used on younger children since they are better at working out their concerns in a symbolic and active way. Play therapy benefits include:
- Greater sense of responsibility
- More positive self-concept
- More accepting of one’s self
- More self-directing
- More self-reliant
- One becomes more trusting
- One develops a feeling of control
- One is able to engage in making decision that are self-determined
The first step in play therapy is for the therapist to develop a trusting relationship with a child. This is important as it enables the child to express themselves freely, while also gaining mastery and control.
Please consider the therapeutic methods mentioned above. They could benefit you or your child.