Anxiety and Mental Health

Who requires Mental Health support? 

As many as 1 in 5 children and youth in Ontario will experience some form of mental health problem, as reported by Children’s Mental Health Ontario. Our society is changing and it is difficult to navigate. We never get to “turn off” or get away and that can impact our children and their mental health. As many of us know, anxiety is useful in certain situations, but if it is impeding your child’s daily routine, social life, academics or home relationships, then it may be time to seek help. 

What may treatment include? 

Therapy sessions will be customized to your child’s age, interests and challenges. Sessions may include stories, games, role-play, art and opportunities for collaborative discussion.  

Some specific examples may include; 

  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy- either through a formal CBT program with your adolescent, or through playful lessons and games with your younger child. CBT strategies start with understanding how our thoughts affect our feelings and behaviours. CBT goes on to intervene at the thought level- recognizing how our thinking can improve our emotional reactions and behaviours. 
  •  Social Thinking- recognizing and practicing the ability to be flexible thinkers and to display an appropriate reaction to a problem. 
  •  Mindfulness and Calming Strategies- Anxiety and mental health concerns often don’t go away compelety, instead the child is empowered with strategies to overcome challenges and continue to function and enjoy their days. 
  • Parent Training- working together to help parents feel empowered to support their children. 
Why OT? 

Occupational Therapists are authorized to perform the controlled act of psychotherapy under the Occupational Therapy Act. Occupational therapists are able to bring a wholistic approach to psychotherapy with an understanding of childhood development, the need for secure relationship and the effect of the sensory and nervous system. Occupational therapists can use an engaging and play based treatment to address a child’s challenges and anxieties. 

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