In cognitive behavioral therapy, there is a session structure. Typically, the clinician would open with a brief update and mood check, then bridge the prior session with the current one, review homework, set the agenda, discuss the items, assign new homework, then provide a final summary and feedback for next session (Beck, 2011, Dienes et al., 2011). This structure remains when working with younger clients, however the clinician may utilize the time differently.
The mood check in with children and adolescents would be a time where the clinician teaches affective expression. The clinician would utilize facial expressions, pictures, and movies to help establish mood differences. The clinician would then introduce the cognitive model in a more simple way; the clinician uses faces and thought bubbles, a baseball diamond, or playful activities. Also, the clinician may need to ask a lot of questions to identify problems, if the client is verbal (Choo, 2014; Myrick & Green, 2012).
Providing homework for young clients almost always involves their caregivers. The homework should be something fun and interactive like a game or play-based activity (Smith-Adcock & Tucker, 2015). The homework should also be a behavioral experiment or practice in exposure therapy. For adolescent clients, difficulties with homework refusal may include problems with organization, interfering cognitions, the client believes it won’t help them, therapist cognitions, automatic thoughts that the clinician may not want to offend or upset the client, and finally the client showing a lack of motivation or commitment to the treatment (Beck 2005, Stewart & Gordon, 2014).
Interventions for Youth Treatment
The problems and difficulti...
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...ous references, networking colleagues, free conferences pertaining to the needs of my clients, and opportunities for growth to learn even more about the counseling perspectives and future evidence based practices that dictate our treatment plans and progress notes.
This class has been an informative introduction to the child and adolescent population. The amount of information covered and the amount of information still accessible is vast and crucial should I ever choose to work specifically with this population. The developments in cognitive behavioral therapy have allowed me the tools to work with play therapy, trauma, anxiety, and other concerns ensuring that after being certified in play therapy, theraplay, or just a refresher course about the younger population, I should be ready for effective and direct therapy with the client and potentially their parents.
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