Exposure to violence, abuse, bullying, stress or parental divorce can traumatise children and often lead to self-blame or feel guilty. Depending on their psychosocial development, some children have difficulty identifying, expressing, and managing emotions, which may limit language for conveying their feelings. As a result, this stress can cause them to internalise and/or externalise reactions, which leads some children to behave in disruptive or challenging behaviours that confuse and/or anger their caretakers. Some may even struggle with anxiety or depressive symptoms.
Play therapy is a well-researched and highly recommend method for helping children to process the issues they are facing. Through play therapy, children learn to identify and express their emotion appropriately, and to build confidence and control over their behaviours. Play therapy is especially helpful for those who have a difficult time expressing their emotions verbally.
Your child may benefit greatly from play therapy if they:
Have a sudden change in behaviour or mood, such as suddenly experiencing a drop in grades or becoming withdrawn, fearful, or moody.
Have experienced a single or repeated traumatic event, such as abuse, the loss of a loved one, bullying or violence.
Have engaged in self-harm behaviours or expressed suicidal ideation.
Having a child in play therapy is a great way to work on building a positive relationship. Play therapists create a safe, comfortable environment and work on developing trust. In return, the child slowly learns that he or she can freely express their feelings and emotions through various mediums, such as painting, colouring, drawing, imaginative role-play, building, etc. Overtime, the therapist will then start to focus more time using different play mediums to address the challenges that bought the child into therapy.
Some of the benefits of having a child in play therapy include:
Developing a healthy sense of self
Increased self-esteem and confidence
Improving social communication and social skills
Lowering levels of anxiety or depressive symptoms
Restoring Peace Counselling & Consultancy offers play therapy and other forms of counselling and psychotherapy services for children, adolescents and adults. For more information, please visit www.restoringpeace.com.sg or Whatsapp us at +65 8889 1848.
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