Frequently used Evidence-Based Treatments in our Private Practice:
Our Child Counselors and Family Counselors offer several Evidence-Based Treatments including Kazdin Parent Management Training™ (PMT) to treat defiance and behavioral problems associated with Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Problem-Solving Skills Training (PSST) for learning effective problem-solving skills, impulse control skills, and how to deal with bullying assertively and appropriately, Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) for trauma, grief, and sexual, physical and/or emotional abuse, and Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) for different forms of anxiety and depression.
In order to most effectively implement these Evidence-Based Treatments at our practice, many of our Child Counselors and Family Counselors have participated in specific advanced training and professional development opportunities that make them uniquely qualified to provide the above interventions. The Clinical Director, Shannon Anderson MA, LPC, NCC, KPMT, has completed advanced training to become a Parent Management Training Clinician in the Kazdin MethodTM (KPMT) and completed additional training in Problem-Solving Skills Training (PSST), both from one of only four Certified Train-the-Trainer Specialists in the Kazdin Method™ Parent Management Training.
Additional Family Counselors have received specific training in the PMT method as well. As for Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), many of our Child Counselors and Family Counselors have either completed a specialized training study with the Missouri Therapy Network through the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University or received training through the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC), via a project associated with The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN).
Kazdin Parent Management Training™ (PMT)
Parent Management Training in the Kazdin Method™ was developed through research over a period of more than 30 years by Dr. Alan Kazdin–John Musser Professor of Psychology at Yale University and director of the Yale Parenting Center. PMT is one of the top Evidence-Based Treatments for children with behavioral difficulties, whether minor or severe. This treatment has been proven to significantly change difficult and challenging behaviors in 78% of children, per parent reports. Whether your child is having mild or more severe behavioral issues, PMT is one of the most researched Evidence-Based Treatments for such issues and can help your child and family immensely.
PMT was developed to treat oppositional, aggressive, and antisocial behaviors in children and teens between the ages of 2 and 15 years of age. The Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (ABCT) has selected PMT to be the only well established treatment for Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Conduct Disorder for children in this age group.
Problem-Solving Skills Training (PSST)
Child Counselors at our practice also use another of the Evidence-Based Treatments called Problem Solving Skills Training (PSST). PSST is designed to help children with impulse control problems to stop and think before acting out impulsively. Children and teens learn to stop and think about consequences and how to evaluate alternative choices when faced with a problem. PSST is often useful in bullying situations as well, as it can teach the “bullied” child or teen how to assertively and appropriately handle such situations.
Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT)
For children and teens who are dealing with grief, loss, or past sexual, physical and/or emotional abuse, Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) is the most highly recommended of the Evidence-Based Treatments. Studies indicate that up to 80% of children and teens with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and related symptoms can benefit significantly from this form of treatment. TF-CBT involves a systematic treatment progression, moving through steps as follows: Psycho-education and Parenting Skills, Relaxation, Affective Expression and Regulation, Cognitive Coping, Trauma Narrative Development and Processing, In Vivo Gradual Exposure, Conjoint Parent-Child Sessions & Enhancing Safety and Future Development.
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)
For symptoms of depression and anxiety, Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) is one of the Evidence-Based Treatments of choice. Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a time-limited, problem-focused intervention that teaches children and teens, as well as adults, how to change unhelpful or unrealistic thinking. With anxiety, for example, children and teens learn new behaviors like calming skills and taking steps toward facing their fears and worries and discovering that it is possible to lessen anxieties. The counselor and client work as a team to identify the specific type of anxiety, the unhelpful thinking and behaviors contributing to the anxiety, and come up with new ways of thinking to rehearse and try out in everyday life situations. With depression, children and teens will learn new behaviors like taking small steps toward their goals, identifying and spending more time engaging in positive activities, and developing more effective problem-solving skills. When treating depression with Cognitive Behavior Therapy, the counselor and client also work together to identify unhelpful thinking and behaviors and develop and practice new, healthier ways of thinking and behaving to reduce the depressive symptoms.
The majority of children and teens who are anxious or depressed can make significant progress and be back to a more normal level of functioning within 10-20 counseling sessions, often without medication. However, Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a treatment that requires active participation on the part of the child or teen and regularly practicing new ways of thinking and behaving are necessary for it to work effectively. Just like medication will only work when taken as prescribed, Evidence-Based Treatments in counseling will only work when clients put forth real effort both during and between counseling sessions.