Wellspring’s therapists provide short-term cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for children with anxiety, obsessions and compulsions, and depression. This work is grounded in research supporting its effectiveness for dealing with these issues. CBT helps children identify and challenge negative thinking patterns that can affect sleep, mood, social interactions, and performance.
When working with a therapist using CBT, children learn coping tools for recognizing and working with difficult emotions or irrational beliefs. Once children begin to integrate these new strategies into their daily life, they feel more confident with managing feared situations and challenging emotions.
After a child has mastered some basic CBT tools, a therapist may introduce exposure and response prevention therapy (ER/P) for anxiety. ER/P encourages a child to confront their fears in a safe environment through a gradual progression toward their most dreaded situations.
ER/P exposures are structured in such a way that a child slowly gains confidence in facing their fears. For example, a child who has a dog phobia may begin spending time with a dog in the office so that they can acclimate to being with dogs and recognize that they can survive the experience without anything bad happening. Through repeated exposures to the feared object or situation, either in their imagination or in reality, children gain a greater sense of control. Their anxiety gradually diminishes, and they become calmer and happier–able to better function at home, at school, and with peers.
The short-term and active structure of Cognital Behavioral Therapy provides children with symptom relief and a toolbox of invaluable skills to use when they encounter challenging feelings and situations.
CBT can be used to address the following:
- Insomnia or other sleep issues
- Eating issues
- Fears and phobias
- Separation anxiety
- Test anxiety
- Performance anxiety
- Social anxiety
- Panic attacks
- Obsessions and compulsions
- General anxiety and worry