Is your teen coping with an issue that requires therapy? If so play therapy could be a good plan for your teen. To help understand the benefits of play therapy for a teen and what a typical play therapy session would be like for a teen, I have interviewed therapist Naomi Babcock LCSW.
Tell me a little bit about yourself.
“I am a child and adolescent psychotherapist that employs both play therapy and expressive art therapy when working with my clients.”
What are the benefits of play therapy for teens?
“Teens can benefit from play therapy because it allows them to confront issues that are bothering them in a way that seems less threatening and intrusive. It also expands the teen’s creative and expressive sides of communication to provide the therapist with information they might otherwise not be able to access as readily. Play therapy provides opportunities for teens that are reluctant to engage and connect in ways that are stimulating and positive while regulating difficult emotional states that might otherwise be difficult to work through.”
What types of issues can play therapy help teens with?
“Play therapy can be effective in treating trauma, anxiety, family stress, interpersonal relationship issues, depression, sensory processing issues, Aspberger’s disorder to name a few.”
What would a typical play therapy session be like for a teen?
“In my work with teens I enjoy using the sand tray as a way for teens to reflect in relationships, perceptions of others and themselves in their own view of the world. The sand is calming and allows for a tactile and sensory experience that invites deeper exploration of their feelings. Games are another mode of connecting with teens as it promotes positive prosocial interaction and lessens tension that might otherwise be experienced when encountering a new adult.”
How is play therapy helpful to the role of a therapist?
“Play therapy allows therapists to provide a fun and interactive way to relate to teens that lessens the apprehension that often accompanies the teens’ beliefs about attending therapy. It allows us to access information that might otherwise be stored in the unconscious by giving it meaning and form.”
Thank you Naomi for doing the interview on how teens can benefit from play therapy. For more information about Naomi Babcock or her work you can check out her website on http://gilbertchildtherapy.com/.
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