Children and adults process thoughts and feelings differently. Although adults are more likely to find verbal expression (talking) helpful in processing emotions or difficult events, children do not always have the capacity to use verbal language in the same way.
In child-centred therapy, the language children express with, is Play.
This video shows the difference between how adults process emotion, and the language of children.
What is Play Therapy?
Child-centred play therapy is an approach to helping children work through their. problems during psychotherapy or counseling sessions by the use of play.
Sessions are based on a structured, theoretically based approach to therapy that builds on the normal communicative and learning processes of children. Therapists strategically use play therapy to help children express what is troubling them when they do not have the verbal language to express their thoughts and feelings.
In play therapy, toys are like the child’s words and play is the child’s language.
Therapy using play is different to regular playtime, in that the therapist helps children to address and resolve their own problems. Play therapy builds on the natural way that children learn about themselves and their relationships with the world around them.
Play provides a safe psychological distance from the child’s problems and allows expression of thoughts and feelings appropriate to their development.
What are the benefits?
The benefits of play therapy for children include a safe place in which to express their thoughts and feelings. This can facilitate the development of self esteem, problem-solving and coping skills, and supports emotional healing and growth.
Through play therapy, children with social or emotional deficits can learn to communicate better, change their behavior, develop problem-solving skills, and relate to others in positive ways.
Play therapy helps children work through difficult emotions. It helps them feel heard and seen, and it can often manifest in improved behavior at school or a reduction of overwhelming anxiety.
By confronting problems in the clinical play therapy setting children find healthier solutions. Play therapy allows children to change the way they think about, feel toward and resolve their concerns.
Who is Play Therapy for?
Play therapy is appropriate for children aged 2- 12 years old. Teenagers and adults have also benefited from play techniques and recreational processes.
Learn more about play therapy in this video
Other services for children
The Integrated Listening System is a program offered at BHT for training neuroplasticity (brain rewiring). iLs can ease anxiety and stress, help children concentrate and learn better, assist in behaviour management and support sleep problems. Find out more here>>>
Braidwood Ninja Warrior Training is a group class for children to develop skills in movement, confidence and social adjustment. Classes run on Mondays. See here for more details >>>
Try it at Braidwood Holistic Therapies
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The article Therapy for Children was published by Hollie, for Braidwood Holistic Therapies.
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