Children and Therapy
Children are incredibly resilient and fun but they DO experience stress, fear, sadness and anxiety. Learning who they are, understanding the world around them and how to "fit in" it is not an easy task. During childhood meltdowns and excitement are familiar, but not easy, experiences. Learning how to regulate emotions is one of the biggest developmental challenges for all children - and for their caregivers as well. Play therapy can reduce the child's symptoms and consequently bring a higher quality of live to the whole family.
Adolescents and Therapy
Adolescence, ranging roughly from the ages of 12 until 24, is a time of wonder as well as of strong emotions. Teenagers debunk, rethink and re-signify everything including themselves during adolescence, which is a critical developmental phase where children acquire the social skills they need to thrive as adults.
It is known that teen years are marked by significant changes in the child's behaviors and a great deal of distress for their parents. During this time teenager's behavior might become perplexing, frustrating, and at times frightening. It is a challenging phase for parents, teens and the entire family unit.
Fortunately, with the advances of neuroscience, we know that there are major neuro-biological changes happening in the teenager's brain during this phase of life. These advances have enabled researchers to learn more about how the adolescent brain functions, from their everyday behavior to how they cope with the life challenges. We understand that there is a major remodeling of the brain structure and functions during adolescence that is not related to " ranging hormones" or "immaturity" as we used to believe. With that advance we also got to understand that parental support has a decisive influence on the "brain reorganization phase".
Research shows that early intervention is a key predictor of a positive prognosis, or a positive resolution to a problem. It is a misconception that children will outgrow their difficulties as they age without proper assistance. In fact, research shows that when an issue is not resolved it is carried to the next phase of development and it continues to affect the individual until much later in life. Young children, toddlers, are no different than school age children and adolescents and they benefit from specialized therapy.
There are many issues that might bring a toddler to see me. One challenge that many toddlers and young children commonly face is the capacity to comfortably separate from their main caregivers while joining a preschool setting. It also is not uncommon for young kiddos to have difficulty with issues of self-control, independence, discipline and autonomy. Play therapy can help toddlers and their parents to deal with on going life changes, children's new phases of development and its new challenges.
In a nutshell -One thing to keep in mind: there is always challenge and conflict in one's life but we all, children and adults, deserve to live our lives in a comfortable manner. Play therapy helps children to gain skills to deal with life difficulties, to learn about themselves, to feel more confident and to heal from overwhelming experiences.