As part of parenthood, parents know very well that it’s their responsibility to look after their children to the best of their ability. Of course, you do everything you can to provide a healthy and comfortable upbringing for them. Still, sometimes, circumstances out of your or their control can lead to a child developing mental health issues or suffering from stress. This is when to see a child psychologist for help.
Connecting Your Child with a Psychologist
In this article, we’ll guide you through the steps of acquiring your child a psychologist, from identifying the first signs that something might be wrong through to how you should establish your role within the child’s therapy to obtain the best results.
How do I know if my child needs a psychologist?
It’s important to remember that you are not a medical professional as a parent, which means that you can’t safely diagnose your children nor take responsibility for implementing therapy or treatment.
Of course, you’re always there for them holistically, and it’s like parents to perceive changes in their children’s moods. This means that by paying attention to your child’s behavior, there are overt signs that you can pick up on to help clarify whether they require professional help.
These signs include:
- Persistent sadness
- Difficulty concentrating at school
- Disinterest in activities they used to love
- Talking about feeling sad, guilty, or worthless
- Overt self-harm
- Changes to eating habits
How to connect your child with the ideal psychologist
Suppose you’ve concluded that it’s best to connect your child with a professional psychologist. In that case, it’s time to find a qualified professional who can assess their mental state and provide a diagnosis.
Once you’ve been provided with a diagnosis, it allows you to search for a therapist or psychologist that specializes in the area of expertise required for your child.
It’s essential to secure the services of a psychologist in the local area, primarily if face-to-face sessions are required – resources such as Therapy Route can provide a portal to finding a specialist in the correct field and location.
By searching for the specifics of your request, such as psychologist in Cape Town, you can soon be in contact with a mental health professional in your area.
How to engage positively in your child’s therapy
As your child’s parent, you know more about them than anyone else. This information could be critical in enabling your child’s therapist to establish the best course of action for them regarding what techniques to use, what style of therapy to apply, and how often sessions are required.
Information that your child’s psychologist will find beneficial includes:
- Changes to their behavior or mood, including new behaviors that you don’t recognize
- How they are reacting to the therapy both at home and in school
- Whether the medication they’ve been prescribed is working
- Context regarding events the child may have described or missed – it helps to construct a story of the week/month
When to see a child psychologist
Keeping up communication with your child helps to ensure any changes are picked up quickly, which goes towards providing the best possible care. Knowing when to see a child psychologist and giving your child the care they need is essential to their long term mental health and well being.