Pediatric Counseling Can Save A Child’s Life

By | November 17, 2018

Child Development and Pediatric Counseling

Children go through stages of development, and when you are a parent, you’re naturally nervous as to whether or not your child is “normal” or “typically developing.” It’s not only physical development we’re talking about, but also emotional growth, which is why therapy can help children achieve crucial developmental stages. Pediatric counseling can be helpful to a child’s development. Children are often less equipped to handle life’s stressors than adults. Grownups have more life experiences and can navigate stressful situations that children find scary can’t deal with on their own. When a child has trouble coping with a traumatic event, this is when pediatric counseling can save them. Much more than play therapy, pediatric therapy partners with the parents to find to benefit the mental wellbeing of a child.

Kids Don’t Need Therapy, or Do They?

Some people believe that children don’t need therapy and that a child’s life is more idealistic than that an adult seeking counseling. What could a child have to “complain?” Children have pain, anger, and frustrations; they manifest them differently than adults. Parents may worry about their child becoming dependent on therapy, and as a result, they’re unable to act like a “regular” child. The problem is when people avoid sending their kids to pediatric counseling, the child’s problems tend to get more severe.

Isn’t this normal?

Let’s look at an example. Let’s imagine a child who is smart, developmentally advanced and doing well in school and socially. Their parents notice that this child exhibits signs of anxiety when he faces tough decisions. They also observe their child become overly self-critical when he makes a mistake. One parent is worried about their child’s behavior and wants to find a therapist for him. The other parent insists their son’s behavior is him “being a kid” and writes off their partner’s concerns as being anxious or dramatic. Differences in how parents view their child’s behavioral problems can cause a rift in their parent dynamic.

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The parent who believes the behavior is common comments on their child’s academic success, the friends they have, and the developmental milestones they’ve hit as evidence that their son is healthy; there’s nothing is wrong. They say that children don’t need therapy unless there is something “wrong” with them. They insist that any emotional problems can be resolved at home.

A child may be successful in many areas, but the anxiety they feel along with the hyper criticalness are red flags. Parents should pay attention to these symptoms, and it’s a good idea to consult a pediatric therapist. A child isn’t equipped at this stage of their developmental journey to cope with their problems, whereas an adult has the emotional tools to manage a harsh inner critic.

A Cry For Help

It may be obvious to a parent when a child needs therapy or it could be subtler depending on the circumstances. When there is childhood trauma involved, for example, therapy can help. However, there are less clear signs like when a child shows a loss of interest in activities they used to enjoy, sudden dip in their grades at school are all signs that therapy could help them.

Pediatric therapy helps children gain tools to cope with their feelings. It can support kids in adjusting to a new social environment or when their parents get divorced. Therapy can help a child through the death of a loved one since children often have a hard time understanding what it means when someone dies; counseling isn’t only for adults, it helps kids as well.

Signs that a child needs to see are therapist: withdrawn behavior, aggressive actions such as physical fighting, difficulty making or maintaining friends, a sudden increase in arguing with family members and changes in sleeping or eating habits. Not every change in your child warrants a visit to therapy. However, it’s crucial for parents to pay attention to their children’s behavior. If you’re a parent reading this, observe your child’s attitude and actions and if something feels off, don’t be afraid to contact a therapist.

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Happy, healthy kids

A therapist wants to establish a caring relationship with the child. They want their client to open up and talk about their feelings. They aren’t there to slap on diagnosis on the kid and move on to other patients. A competent therapist understands that children’s anxiety and trauma need to be gently confronted.

And a pediatric therapist’s goal is to promote the mental health of the child. Both the parents and the therapist have the same goal, which is to see the child thrive. When parents and therapists work together, the child can find relief and feel empowered in their sense of self. They will continue to grow as a healthy individual. Pediatric therapy can make a huge difference in a child’s life. Whether you seek a pediatric therapist online or in your local area, the most important thing is getting your child the help they need.

This is a featured post by site sponsor Better Help.

Photo credit: Pixabay

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