How do I know if my child or teenager needs a psychotherapist?

Children usually don’t usually use words to tell their parents and teachers they are suffering. They communicate instead through their ‘bad’, confusing, difficult or strange behaviour.

Look out for signs of problems such as sleep disturbances, bedwetting, irrational fears and anxiety, irritability, problems with friends and peers, extreme mood swings, high activity levels, aggressiveness, bullying (or being the victim of bullying), school refusal, separation anxiety, social withdrawal, stealing, extreme shyness, conflict with parents, scholastic difficulties and learning problems, excessive sibling rivalry and ongoing health complaints.

As children grow into teenagers, the problems could take the form of drug use, self-harm, eating disorders and risk-taking behaviour.

If your child is showing any of these signs of distress, make contact with a child psychotherapist to discuss the best way forward.