SWISS MEDICAL EXPERTISE: ZURICH, MALLORCA, LONDON, NEW YORK

10 Minutes

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Adolescence is one of the most crucial stages of human development. It is the time when young people are facing many psychological, identity, physical, and relationship changes on their journey to adulthood. Despite being stereotyped as a difficult and tumultuous time, many adolescents successfully get through this developmental stage peacefully and respectfully. However, a small number of them may get stuck between heavy academic workloads, peer pressures, and forming their sense of identity. Some may experience bullying, while others face difficulties navigating relationships independently.

To fight all these stressors the modern world exerts on an adolescent, enrolling in a teen’s therapy program may help.

Different types of counselling therapies are available for teens these days. The choice of a therapy or a combination of therapies depends on the issues a particular teen faces. Among the multiple therapy options, some of the most common ones include:

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)

This therapy mainly benefits teens with trauma, depression, or anxiety and involves identifying harmful thought patterns and replacing them with positive ones.

Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT):

DBT helps a teen take responsibility for their intense emotions and daily conflicts and allows them to find healthier ways of coping with them. This therapy is often beneficial for teens who engage in self-harming behaviours, develop suicidal tendencies, or suffer from a personality disorder.

Family therapy

Family involves one or more members of the teen’s family, such as parents, siblings, and grandparents. The ultimate goal of this therapy is to improve the communication between all family members to cultivate a supportive environment at home.

Group Therapy

Group therapy involves multiple teenagers led by a single therapist. This setting allows a teen to improve their social skills and learn how other teens in similar situations constructively cope with their issues.

Interpersonal therapy (IPT)

IPT is commonly offered to teens with depression. It mainly focuses on their relationships and supports addressing their relationship problems.

Mentalisation-based therapy (MBT)

MBT helps teens with identity issues learn who they are.

Supportive therapy

Supportive therapy aims to enable teens to address and cope with their problems healthily without compromising their self-esteem.

In addition to choosing a program that offers diverse therapy options, selecting a therapist who can effectively use these therapies to deliver results is equally important. With multiple teen counsellors available across the UK, it can be helpful to know what to look for in finding the best fit. Following are some important considerations when it comes to choosing the right therapist for your teen:

Their Relevant Experience

Always choose a therapist who has experience and expertise working with teens. Teens are unique as their problems and how they deal with them differ according to their age group. Hence, choosing someone who appreciates this uniqueness and provides tailored therapy is beneficial.

Look for teen therapists in your area online and carefully go through their websites to gather more information about them and their practice. If possible, get referrals to specific counsellors from your trusted healthcare professionals.

Proper Credentials

A therapist must hold a valid license to provide treatment. There might be some exceptions, such as with a drug or trained religious counsellor. Nevertheless, it is better to go for the one who has proof of training and experience in managing teenage issues.

Therapeutic Approach

Consider the training and therapeutic approach of every counsellor before shortlisting one. There are different ways to counsel teens, and each may work differently with different benefits. Familiarise yourself with these different approaches and choose based on the specific issues your teen struggles with.

Personality and Rapport

While credentials and experience are essential, what matters the most is the personality and therapeutic rapport that a therapist forms with a teen. This relationship plays a critical factor in the provision of adequate care and support from the therapist’s end.

So while choosing a teen counsellor for your child, check which one of them is most likely to bond with your teen. Listen closely to your gut feeling as you make a decision.

Specific needs

Another way to choose a therapist is by thinking about the specific qualities that your teen may need from them to recover. Ask yourself:

  • Does my teen have a preference for a female or male therapist?
  • Are they likely to respond more to someone who is more supportive or nurturing or someone who is direct or to the point?
  • Will they work better with an older, more experienced therapist or a younger and energetic one?

Interviewing potential therapists over the phone, via email or in a face-to-face meeting is crucial before sending your teen over for recovery. Some therapists conduct this initial consultation free of cost or at a considerably reduced rate so that parents can approach them and have their questions answered.

Consider asking your therapist the following questions to gain important information and a better sense of how they plan to work with your teen:

  • How long have you been in practice?
  • Do you have any experience with the particular problem that my teen is struggling with? Can you elaborate on it?
  • How long will you work with my team?
  • What license or accreditation do you hold, and is it still valid?
  • Will you allow other family members to participate in the therapy process?
  • Are you a member of any professional organisation?
  • How do you establish goals and measure progress for therapy?
  • Can you explain the therapy approach you routinely use with your patients?
  • Once you have answers to these questions, think about them in detail and decide whether they are a good choice to proceed with. Ask yourself:
  • Does it look like the therapist knows what they are talking about?
  • How do you feel when you talk to them?
  • Do they seem to carry genuine empathy for teenagers?
  • Do they answer your queries patiently?

The answers to these questions can help you decide on the most suitable therapist for your teenager.

When you first discuss therapy with your teen, chances are they may resist, and this type of behaviour is completely normal, so there is no need to worry much about it. Instead, you may consider utilising the following techniques to make your resistant teen become open to the idea of seeking therapy.

Allow them to lead

Most teens do not appreciate others making decisions for them. So instead of blatantly telling them that they need to go for trouble youth counselling therapy, provide them information on the process and ask them if they think it could benefit them. Let them know that you are with them no matter what. If they eventually decide to go for the treatment willingly, they will likely stay compliant and benefit the most from it.

Offer incentives

If your teen is having difficulty accepting the idea of therapy, offer them a reward. For example, you may tell them that you’ll buy tickets to their favourite singer’s concert if they attend one counselling session. This move will incentivise them without gripping them into a long-term relationship with counselling. Soon after attending a few sessions driven by incentives, your teen may realise how they are getting something out of them and choose to continue them.

Include them in the process

Because teens are on their way to entering adulthood, they do not wish to be treated like children. With this idea in mind, consider including your child in choosing a therapist. Give them a say in deciding when and how to schedule appointments. Have them nearby as you search for teen counsellors and rehabs on the internet and have a healthy discussion about why this is a good idea for them.

Including your teen every step of the way makes them feel like you are a team. Hence, they are more likely to follow through with your proposed plan and get the help they need.

Enrolling your adolescent in a teen’s therapy program can help them feel secure, happy, and more confident within themselves and the family dynamic. It also guarantees academic excellence with a brighter future ahead with no problems dragging them down. Get your teenager the help they need today.

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