“Deep meaning lies often in childish play.”
– Johann Friedrich von Schille (German poet 1759–1805)
Dr. Gary’s play room is stacked to the ceiling with therapeutic games for children -literally! We got a peak at a few of those games, what they do, and where to get them! “As the president of the largest US publisher of therapeutic and counseling games, I have a lot more options than most child clinicians when it comes to acquiring games and selecting the ones I want to use in my sessions. Most of the time I try to be prescriptive. That is, I select games and activities most appropriate to the client I’m meeting with. Despite taking this approach I find myself gravitating to some therapy games much more than others.” Read more here!
Many clinicians will agree, the earlier you begin treatment for an illness or disability, the better the outcome is. Jan Ference, program director for Pathways to Healing, especially agrees that it is important to recognize and being treating serious neurological and behavioural issues as early as possible. The program diagnosis and treats children up to the age of six. “Finally the systems are starting to understand that if you put your money in early intervention, you actually will save buckets of money down the road and the outcomes for kids and families can be permanently changed, as opposed to the Band-Aid approach,” said Ference. Read more here!
There is a shortage of mental health professionals for children and teens in America. Oftentimes the school ends up being a child’s only resource for support and intervention. When a child needs more help than the school can provide, is can be hard for parents to navigate through their options for services, and then there is usually a wait-list involved in the scheduling processes. Without the proper support, children drop out of school, or worse, hurt themselves or others. How can we ensure that children and teens are getting all the support they need? Read more here.
“According to the World Health Organisation, worldwide 10-20% of children and adolescents experience mental illness. Half of all mental illnesses begin by the age of 14 and three-quarters by the mid-20s.” Yet mental illness is met with indifference that often leaves people feeling ashamed. It is important to spread awareness of mental illness so that people of all ages feel supported and can get the help they need. Read more here!