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Working with Children and Adolescents

Published on 16th February 2011

Any therapists working with children and adolescent needs a clear certificate from the The Criminal Records Bureau and an appropriate training in the field of child and adolescent psychotherapy. A CRB is the common term used to refer to a background check performed by the Criminal Records Bureau. A clear ‘enhanced disclosure’ from the CRB is an essential pre-requisite for any person who wishes to work with children or vulnerable adults.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy with Children and Adolescents

Raising children is very hard work. While each developmental stage presents its own difficulties, adolescence is certainly one of the hardest for parents to negotiate. The journey becomes especially tortuous if children experience emotional difficulties. It's all too easy to get lost ourselves in the emotional storms and breakdowns that overwhelm your children.

How can counselling help Adolescents?

There is a normal tendency for adolescents to seek privacy concerning their emotional lives. Hallmarks of this stage of development are the phrases " I don't want to talk about it" and " everything is fine" - the second of which often doesn't square with what as parents might experience. As adolescents feel a real need to be separated and independent from their parents, and peer pressure then a new way of negotiating that ground and understanding their needs provokes anger, conflict, low self confidence, depression, and emotional distress. Counselling facilitates a safe space  for the teenager to negotiate these new waters and to avoid asking for help with child-like dependency. It helps the adolescent to differentiate between mature dependency, which includes the capacity to request advice and a pseudoindepence that places a premium on going it alone.  Research supporting Cognitive Behavioural Therapy with children and adolescents is methodologically rigorous and has yielded significant efficacy results.CBT and Psychoeducation gives children, adolescents, their families, and therapists a common understanding of the therapy process.

Outcomes of adolescent counselling and psychotherapy

  • Assist the teenager via a cognitive behaviour therapy to change by examining and challenging their prior unhelpful, unrealistic beliefs about themselves and their world.
  • Assist the teenager to move between acceptance and change
  • Restores emotions to its proper status
  • Breaking through the impasse
  • Heads off guilt and self-blame
  • Helps teens learn who they are and what's right for them
  • Helps teens control their impulses
  • gaining skills to succeed socially
  • Help them to turn down the temperature on the emotional upheaval and increase the possibility for positive emotional experiences.
  • Help with distress tolerance as some events in life are going to be painful no matter what, such as bereavement or as heartbreaking as the death of someone dear .



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