Children don’t have the same cognitive ability as an adult to say what’s bothering them. The problem could be a behavioral issue, psychological issue, or maybe even medical. No matter what the problem is, they need a way to discuss it. Children can work on issues that are distressing to them, can play out issues of what the future will be, and can talk about trauma. If it’s too hard to put into words, they can work on it with play. Play therapy helps children become more responsible for behaviors and develop more successful strategies, develop new and creative solutions to problems, develop respect and acceptance of self and others, learn to experience and express emotion, cultivate empathy and respect for thoughts and feelings of others, learn new social skills and relational skills with family, and develop self-efficacy and thus a better assuredness about their abilities. If you believe you or your child would benefit from learning about play therapy, it may be time to reach out.
Treatment at CARE Counseling using play therapy may include working toys or activities that allow the child to explore complex emotions and tell their story through objects they interact and play with. Additionally, caregivers may be part of the process whether they are directly in the treatment and working on modifying how they interact with the child at home or the whole family is participating in family play therapy. Whatever the level of involvement of the family members, they typically play an important role in the child’s healing.