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A young child using a toy stethoscope on a baby doll laying in a doll bed.

CHILD-CENTRED PLAY THERAPY

Child-centred play therapy is an age-appropriate, theoretically-based approach to child therapy that builds on the typical communication style of children. Play therapy provides a safe space for children to play out their thoughts, feelings, and experiences. It supports emotional regulation and social connection, as well as giving children a space to test out new skills in a supportive and permissive environment. Play therapy at Grow Paediatric Therapy is implemented by a registered Developmental Educator with postgraduate clinical training in play therapy.

The goals of play therapy are self-awareness and self-direction by the child. In the safe and inviting playroom, the child is free to play or remain silent while the practitioner actively reflects the child's thoughts and feelings. When a child's feelings are expressed, identified and unconditionally accepted, the child can make sense of these feelings and move towards accepting those feelings themselves.

In a safe and supportive therapeutic environment, play facilitates communication, fosters emotional wellness, enhances social relationships and increases personal strengths. Play therapy harnesses these powers of play to prevent and resolve social, emotional and behavioural challenges faced by children.

 

Play therapy can help children make sense of big feelings that may be associated with:

·       Understanding different neurotypes, their strengths and support strategies

·       Kinship care and foster care

·       Low self-esteem

·       Separation or divorce

·       Grief, loss and trauma

·       Anxiety and depression

·       Gender expression and identity 

·       School or social difficulties

·       Bullying

·       Chronic illness

·       Medical trauma

·       Sibling and/or family conflict

·       Peer relationships

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