What is play therapy and how does it work?

Children often communicate their thoughts and feelings more naturally through play than they do through verbal communication (used with adults/talk therapy). In play therapy toys are like the child’s words and play is the child’s language. Through play the therapist provides a safe and non-threatening way for children to express thoughts and feelings. It helps children tell what is troubling them and to understand their own experiences and the outside world. Play therapy uses a variety of play and creative arts techniques such as drawing, coloring, drama/role play, puppets and therapeutic storytelling.

The therapist uses play therapy to help the child to learn how to communicate with others, express feelings, modify undesirable behaviors, learn problem solving, develop coping skills and learn how to control their emotions (self-regulation skills). Play therapy helps children to feel comfortable about themselves and increases their self-esteem.

Play therapy also helps children process traumatic events they have experienced and to heal from it. Play therapy helps the child to become more confident, secure and resourceful, helping them to deal with the on going challenges of life.

Watch this fun video of our friend Andrew below.... I wish even adults could communicate that well!