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Child Therapists in Brooklyn: Options and How To Find Them

child and mother in a therapy session

 

Child therapists specialize in treating mental health concerns in children and adolescents.

Because a child's or teen's mind is very different from an adult's, it takes specialized training and education to take care of their mental health.

Many therapists who are excellent at treating adults won't even book sessions with children, and many child therapists don't feel qualified to work with adults.

As its own distinct specialty within psychology, child therapy comes with its own methodologies, practices, personnel, and schedules. Let's explore what a child therapist does and your options for child therapy in Brooklyn.

Key Takeaways:

  • Child and adolescent psychology is different from adult psychology, so treating children requires a specialist.
  • Brooklyn is home to many qualified child therapists, including many members of the team at Williamsburg Therapy Group.
  • Child psychology sessions look different depending on the age of your child and any presenting symptoms.

Read about child therapy in Brooklyn on this page:

How To Find a Child Therapist in Brooklyn

What does a child therapist do?

Different Types of Therapy for Children

What To Expect From Your Child's First Session

Child Therapists in Brooklyn: Williamsburg Therapy Group

How To Find a Child Therapist in Brooklyn

The first step to finding a Brooklyn therapist for your child depends on whether you have insight into what exactly the reason for the therapy is.

If you know, for example, that your child is struggling with anxiety, it makes sense to try and find a child therapist who specializes in that.

If you don't know what the problem is or if your child is struggling with behavioral issues with seemingly no root cause, then look for a child therapist with as much experience as possible.

There are a number of other factors you can use to narrow down your search, including:

  • Your location
  • Preferences for therapist gender
  • Referrals from a trusted source (for example, from your physician)
  • Therapists who specialize in your child's specific age range.

Williamsburg Therapy Group staffs many doctoral-level child psychologists, so check out our team as a starting point.

Book a Therapy Session in NYC Today

What does a child therapist do?

A child therapist is a licensed mental health professional who retains a specialty in working with people under the age of 18.

Within child therapy are subfields that focus on age ranges, as well as crossfields that focus on specific mental health conditions or concerns.

In general, a child therapist will use different methodologies from those used in therapy for adults. Child therapy may consist of play therapy, activities, and talk therapy in combinations that make sense on a case-by-case basis.

Therapy for Younger Children (Ages 0 to 8)

Younger children obviously won't be able to listen to an adult talk at them for any appreciable amount of time, so therapy at this age typically consists of playing and spending time with family.

Developing bonds with parents and siblings is a great way for a young child to learn. It can also help parents better understand their child's thoughts and behaviors, which can make for more constructive parenting.

Therapy for Older Children (Ages 9 to 12)

Children at this age are typically capable of benefiting from talk therapy, so therapy for these children will often involve some form of evidence-based psychotherapy.

These children can often understand that feelings can impact behaviors, and vice versa. Your child's therapist will work with your child to figure out which methods will work best.

Therapy for Teenagers (Ages 13 to 17)

Children in this age range may be able to benefit from talk therapy exclusively.

Your therapist will speak with your child about their thoughts and emotions, and will use cognitive-behavior therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, or some other form of talk therapy to help your child progress.

Every child is different, so your therapist will create a specialized treatment plan. It's not uncommon for parents to receive individual sessions as well, in order to both learn new parenting skills and catch up on their child's progress.

Different Types of Therapy for Children

There are several forms of therapy that might be beneficial depending on your child's age:

  • Play therapy
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Acceptance and commitment therapy
  • Family therapy

Usually, child therapy will involve a combination of these methods. Family therapy in particular can be very important for a child's mental health since, at that age, their family may be their primary social system.

What To Do If Your Child Has Anxiety or Depression

If you suspect your child has anxiety or depression, or if they have told you that they think they might, therapy can be an important part of the healing process.

You can get a referral for a child psychologist from your pediatrician and talk to them about the options for therapy and, if deemed necessary, medication.

What To Do If Your Child Has ADHD

There are child psychologists who specialize in treating children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

Characterized by an inability to focus, hyperactive behavior, and difficulty learning new information, ADHD can have a negative impact on your child's academics, social life, and, by extension, their development.

Therapy with a licensed therapist can be a great place to start in managing the symptoms of ADHD.

What To Expect From Your Child's First Session

Your child's first therapy session will likely include you as the parent, at least for a portion of it.

There are two reasons for this:

  1. There may be logistics, payment, or scheduling details to iron out, which obviously requires a parent.
  2. Your relationship to your child is extremely important to their development, so your therapist may spend some time getting to know you and your overall mental health.

It's also likely, depending on the age of your child, that the therapist will spend some time speaking with your child individually.

While therapists, in general, are not legally required to keep the content of sessions with your child private, they may choose to do so at the request of the child or in order to build trust with them. Note that this varies state-by-state, so if you have questions about therapy confidentiality in your area, consult a qualified lawyer.

If your therapist does decide to keep information about your child from you, know that there is almost certainly a very good reason for it, which is likely less about you and more about your child's progress.

Privacy can be a very important part of a child's therapy process. If a child knows that everything they say to their therapist will also be said to their parents, they may not open up as honestly. Therapy works best when patients trust the process.

After a few sessions, your child's therapist will likely formulate a plan for ongoing sessions as well as timelines and details for goals.

Child Therapists in Brooklyn: Williamsburg Therapy Group

Williamsburg Therapy Group staffs some of the most experienced, highly qualified child psychologists in Brooklyn.

If you feel your child may benefit from therapy, schedule an appointment today. The first step is to talk about options for your child based on their age and any presenting behaviors, so getting started sooner rather than later is the best practice.

Book a Therapy Session in NYC Today

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