Discovering that your child needs therapy can be terrifying. For sure, you will have lots of questions and negative thoughts in your mind. Of course, you will think of the amount that you need to spend for the sessions with a professional therapist. At the same time, you will also feel hesitation in allowing your beloved kid to open up during the therapy meetings. What you are thinking and feeling right now is only typical of a parent whose kid has a mental condition. Remember to avoid freaking out because the more you do it, the more difficult it will be for your child.
Below are some of the essential things that you need to keep in mind when it comes to getting professional help in dealing with your kid’s mental health:
Go To The Right Person
Unfortunately, a lot of parents are unaware of the difference between a therapist and a psychiatrist. There are some who mix up the terms, which is why they encounter difficulty in seeking the assistance of the right professional. A psychiatrist is a medical practitioner or doctor who has completed a specialization in diagnosing and treating mental health problems. “A Psychiatrist is a medical doctor who specializes in mental health issues and has specific training in medication for depression.” Dr. Chantal Gagnon PhD LMHC adds. On the other hand, a therapist is someone who studies and deals with the behavior or attitude of a person to help the latter deal with a mental condition. A physiatrist can prescribe medicines while a therapist does not have such authority. The initial step in solving a mental health issue is to approach the right person. Hence, it is vital for you to know the distinctions.
Get A Diagnosis First
The standard practice is to approach a psychiatrist first before going to a therapist. It is highly recommended that parents must see a health practitioner beforehand who could provide for the proper diagnosis of the kid’s condition. An excellent medical doctor will not only provide for the determination of the illness but also propose an ideal treatment plan to address the issues. At the same time, he will also be the one to determine whether a referral to a counselor or therapist is necessary. As a parent, you must meet this professional first for a consultation.
Let Your Kid Participate
Therapy sessions are effective only if the patient is actively participating in the sessions. Because of this, you must encourage your child to show up at all the meetings or appointments with a therapist. You must remind him of the significance of his participation in fast recovery. Take note that you must not insist on accompanying your child during the sessions with a therapist. You can bring him to the office of the professional but do not try to interfere during the encounter. As a suggestion, you could simply wait outside until the sessions are over. Feel free to ask questions to your child after he has completed the meeting with a therapist.
“Therapy can remind you how to take care of yourself and develop a plan so you know your sources of support.” says Carmen Gehrke, LMHC. Searching for the right psychiatrist or therapist to help you is not an easy thing to do. You need to be patient in researching the best professional in town.