Outpatient Mental and Behavioral Health Therapy for Children

Watson Institute’s Behavioral Health Services offer a variety of therapy services for children up to the age of 21. Individual and social skills group therapy and medication management are the primary child therapies provided by Watson’s experiences psychologists, psychiatrists and therapists.

How can Outpatient Mental and Behavioral Health Therapy help my child?

You may be wondering if therapy services are necessary for your child. Some common symptoms and stressors that may indicate that mental or behavior health therapy services could be beneficial to your child include:

  • Excessive worries
  • Sleep issues due to worry
  • Anger/aggression
  • Inappropriate behaviors
  • Social difficulties
  • Lack of motivation
  • Traumatic experience
  • Withdrawal or isolation

If any of these symptoms appear in your child, consider reaching out to the Watson Institute and inquiring about our therapy services.

Individual Therapy for Children and Adolescents

Watson’s individual therapy for children and adolescents focuses on selecting interventions that are tailored to meet the child’s needs, based on his/her diagnosis, strengths and areas of opportunity. Therapy is typically provided on a weekly basis but may be revised based upon the needs of the child.

Watson’s experienced clinicians are trained to provide therapy approaches such as:

  • Trauma-Informed Care: a therapy approach that seeks to increase awareness of the impact of trauma on your child’s life experiences and relationships. It recognizes how trauma can change the trauma survivor’s outlook, emotions, and behaviors.
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): a therapy technique that influences behavioral changes by understanding thoughts and feelings and examining thought patterns.
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT): helps individuals examine and challenge unhealthy patterns of coping (such as self-injurious behaviors or thoughts of self-harm) and learn new skills which help them to achieve overall wellness and healthy coping strategies.
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Therapy: a therapy for those suffering from PTSD that seeks to improve symptoms related to the trauma, teach skills to deal with symptoms, and restore thought patterns and self-esteem.

As a parent or guardian of a child receiving individual therapy, you will receive education about his/her diagnosis, the symptoms, and treatment options that are available. You may also be invited to participate in family group therapy sessions along with your child as part of the treatment process.

Autism Social Skills Group Therapy

Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder ages 7 through 21 are eligible to participate in our social skills group therapy. Participation in this group requires completion of a diagnostic assessment with a psychologist or therapist and may be offered in conjunction with individual therapy.

The goal of social skills group therapy is to help children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis improve conversation skills, make and maintain friendships, apply emotional regulation skills, and assess and handle teasing and/or bullying, among other elements in the development of social skills. At Watson, cognitive behavior therapy, structured talk-driven therapy, is utilized in the groups, differentiating our social skills groups from other providers. Social skills groups meet weekly for ninety minute sessions, allowing participants the time to practice and develop their skills.

Medication Management

Medication management is provided by a licensed child/adolescent psychiatrist and will help provide up-to-date medication treatment approaches for your child. As a parent or guardian of a child or adolescent with a mental health diagnosis, you will collaborate with the therapists to ensure medications are being managed appropriately. A combination of medication and therapy may be suggested as that is often times the most effective treatment approach.

If you think your child with special needs could benefit from Watson’s child therapy services, request an appointment with a Watson Outpatient Behavioral Health Services expert today! An evaluation is not a necessary pre-requisite to begin individual therapy, although an evaluation may be recommended by our clinicians.

To ensure a productive first appointment, please complete the following intake packet.

Medication Management Intake Packet

Background Questionnaire

Please complete the Background Questionnaire within 24 hours of making your appointment and send the completed form to:

Watson Institute
c/o Behavioral Health Services Intake Department
301 Camp Meeting Road
Sewickley, PA 15143