Child Counselling Services in Edmonton
As a parent or caregiver, you want to protect your child from anything that causes serious and long-term harm. Sadly, you can't protect your child from everything and childhood trauma can happen. Thankfully, there is help available. You can always turn to Gary J. Meiers, Ph.D., JoAnn Hammond-Meiers, Ph.D. and Associates Ltd. for child counselling in Edmonton. Our patient and caring counsellors will work with your child to get to the root of the problem and help him or her get on the path towards recovery.
We provide a safe, confidential space where your child can speak freely without fear of ridicule or judgement. This calm, supportive environment will help your child open up and talk about things they may not feel comfortable revealing to you. It's important that your child can develop trusting relationships with other adults and have someone outside of the family unit that they can talk to when a traumatic situation occurs.
Child Counselling for Trauma in Edmonton
You might worry that you won’t recognize when your child is suffering from trauma. Troublesome behaviour that’s out of character for your child is generally a sign that something is wrong, but you still may not know what the anger or sadness stems from. Our counselling can bring the source of the trauma to light, allowing us to help them understand their emotions, express their thoughts and learn useful coping skills.
What Causes Childhood Trauma?
Violent, frightening, and life-threatening incidents can all lead to trauma. Children also seek solace after witnessing or experiencing physical or verbal abuse, sexual abuse, domestic violence, terrorist events, loss of a parent through death or divorce, hospitalization, natural disasters, or any other incident that causes them extreme distress.
- Withdraw or dissociate: A child going through trauma withdraws himself from social interactions and/or from his interests. Such a child remains aloof majority of the time shying away into his boundaries and hence needs proper counselling to get over such behaviour.
- Uncontrolled temper: If your child is outraged on small things, it is quite natural that your child suffers from trauma. It is necessary to look into his activities in order to identify his mental condition.
- Sadness: A continuous sadness in a child’s behavior is a symptom of chronic trauma your child have had been facing. It is quite unnatural for a child to remain so for a longer time. Such sadness may even lead to other mental illnesses during his growing stages.
- Nervousness and concern for safety for self and others: Children are usually born carefree and have tendency to laugh, and enjoy during his growing age. A child who is usually nervous shows a symptom of trauma that may have caused due to some reason. Such a child may also have a tendency to worry or have a concern about safety, not just for his own self but also for others. This is in a way, unnatural and needs to be quickly attended.
- Nausea and trouble sleeping: Constant sleeplessness is unnatural when children require minimum 12 to 16 hours depending upon their growth stage. Such children are usually traumatized by some reasons and hence find difficulty in sleeping. They may usually feel nauseated and needs medical treatment for a healthy mind.
- Flashbacks and/or feeling as if they are in the trauma all over again: Children’s minds are quite vulnerable to harsh incidents and a traumatized child would keep remembering the incident making him fall into the traps of trauma over and over again. It isn’t easy for such children to get over it and needs a proper medical treatment to restore their mental health.
- Retelling their story again and again: A traumatized child seeks redressal to the grieving mind. A child would keep repeating the stories again and again hoping to get relieved out of the trauma. The child would continue to describe the stories and would fall into a habit of repeating stories.
- Cling for emotional support: A child suffering from trauma demands emotional support and would try gaining attention towards him to etch him from the uneasy mental state.
- Bed wetting: Bed wetting is a common symptom of traumatized child. Such a child demands healthy counselling to feel the mental peace within.
Paying close attention to your child's physical and emotional state will help you identify the symptoms described above.
What Can You Do?
Children often turn to the people they are closest to after a traumatic incident. As you listen to their story, you want to empathize with their emotional experience. This creates safety allowing your child to tell and perhaps retell their story of a traumatic event. You can also create a safe haven for your child as you:
- Establish daily routines for meals, school, play and sleep
- Answer his or her questions
- Express that you are in control and will protect him or her
- Work through behavioural issues with him or her
- Offer a safe place by keeping him or her close to you
- Learn to become an Active Listener
These actions, in addition to any necessary professional help, allow the child to feel comfortable and safe in different situations and environments.
If you feel you need the services of a child counsellor, call our office at 780-433-2269 to talk with our staff or schedule an appointment.