Who are child and adolescent psychologists and how can they help?
Child psychologists are not only licensed psychologists, but they also have specialized, science-based training in treating serious psychological issues and managing day-to-day family challenges in a more effective manner. Adults and children often say they feel more comfortable in a child psychologist's office than they expected. Parents feel relief to come to a comfortable place and have a knowledgeable, caring professional hear their concerns while children are relaxed with all the toys, games, and puzzles in the office.
In the first couple of visits, the psychologist gathers information from all family members about their thoughts related to the problem. This could include any information parents provide from other sources such as reports, material from baby books, school grades, or drawings. Often the parent and child are asked to complete standardized checklists to help clarify problems and strengths the child has. What happens next depends on how the child or family can best be helped. Sometimes a more formal, expert evaluation is recommended. Other times a course of therapy or other outside professional resources are suggested.