Infancy and Early Childhood
Infancy and Early Childhood
Problems that arise during infancy and early childhood may be indicative of underlying conditions or emerging pathologies. Challenges or delays in developmental milestones are of note, as well as any difficulties associated with feeding, sleeping, toileting, attachments, trauma, intellectual and neuro difficulties, and general behavioural or conduct problems.
Assessment and intervention at this stage is primarily conducted via observation and with the caregiver given this early stage in development. Typical problems encountered during the assessment process include social and communication difficulties, educational attainment challenges, and attachment and separation anxieties for example.
1 in 6 children have a diagnosable mental, behavioural, or developmental disorder.
Source, Children’s Health Survey 2019
An attachment based approach is a brief form of therapy aiming to look at the connection between an infant’s early attachment experiences with primary caregivers. Attachment-based therapy aims to build or rebuild a trusting, supportive relationship that will help prevent or treat anxiety or depression.
For Attachment Based Family Therapy see Adults, Couples and Families section on the service page.
Trauma-focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
A Trauma-focused Cognitive Therapy approach targets specific traumatic experiences including cognitive issues, depression or anxiety symptoms. This approach aims to improve parenting skills and parents’ interactions with their children to help support and cope with their children’s struggles.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (with Parents)
By involving parents in the treatment process, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy has shown to be effective in treating children with anxiety disorders. CBT can also help coach parents to use techniques to help care for anxious children using psycho- education and coping strategies. In this form of therapy, the parents are involved directly in the treatment of their children and are essentially trained in ways to help them handle their children’s fears at home.
In Crisis? If you feel you or someone else is at imminent risk there are a number of services and organisations who can help:Go to your local A&E
Call The Police
Contact your local NHS Crisis Team
Contact your local Single Point of Access; this is a relatively new service available in most Trusts aimed to streamline referrals
If you need to talk to someone, there are a number of charitable organisations who can help:
Text THEMIX to 85258 – talking support for young people
Call The Samaritans on 116123 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit www.thecalmzone.net – The Campaign Against Living Miserably, specifically aimed at men under 45.
Call Family Lives on 0808 800 2222 – support for families and parenting.
Childline – 0800 1111.
If you are experiencing domestic abuse you can contact Refuge on their 24 hour helpline 0808 2000247.
Anxiety UK recommends the apple technique in triggering situations:
Acknowledge the uncertainty as it comes to mind.
Pause – Don’t react as you normally do. Don’t react at all. Just pause and breath.
Pull back – Tell yourself this is just the worry talking, and this apparent need for certainty is not helpful and not necessary. It is only a thought or feeling. Don’t believe everything you think. Thoughts are not statements or facts.
Let go – Let go of the thought or feeling. It will pass. You don’t have to respond to them. You might imagine them floating away in a bubble or cloud.
Explore – Explore the present moment, because right now, in this moment, all is well. Notice your breathing and the sensations of your breathing. Notice the ground beneath you. Look around and notice what you see, what you hear, what you can touch, what you can smell. Right now. Then shift your focus of attention to something else – on what you need to do, on what you were doing before you noticed the worry, or do something else – mindfully with your full attention.
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