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Sandy works with clients using cognitive behavioural therapy, enhanced with acceptance and commitment therapy and play therapy approaches.

What is Cognitive Behaviour Therapy


Cognitive behaviour therapy is an evidenced based therapy which has been shown through research to be extremely effective in treating a wide range of emotional and behavioural problems including anxiety disorders, depression, behaviour difficulties, school refusal and sleep difficulties, amongst others.   While treatment is individually tailored to each child's unique presentation, therapy commonly focuses on:-

  • Creating a positive and trusting therapeutic relationship.

  • Educating the child and parents about the child's particular ​difficulty, as well as the likely causes and maintaining factors.

  • Assessing where deficit areas exist that should be the focus of skills development.

  • Teaching the child breathing and relaxation techniques, if required.

  • Improving the child's awareness of unhelpful thought patterns and teaching him or her to replace these with helpful thoughts.

  • Addressing any unhelpful behaviours that are present that are contributing to the child's difficulties.  A wide range of behaviours may be addressed and could include behaviours such as avoidance, displays of anger, reassurance seeking, high levels of dependence on others, and so on.

  • Providing the child with emotional regulation skills to improve his or her ability to manage with strong feelings.

  • Improving the child's problem solving skills, coping skills independence and resilience.

  • Keeping the child engaged in treatment by illustrating important concepts through storytelling and games.

  • Educating parents on what they can be doing at home to best assist the child.

  • Involving parents in treatment when appropriate, so they can support the child in practicing strategies discussed in sessions within the home environment.

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