Play Therapy: An Introduction
Play Therapy is a method of helping children with behaviour and/or emotional problems. It offers an opportunity to 'play out' their feelings and problems. Children are much better at playing about a problem rather than talking; it is a natural way for children to work through their emotions. Play Therapy can involve a range of resources including use of art, clay, storytelling, puppets, music, sand tray, and many more.
Play Therapy provides a safe environment where a qualified and empathetic therapist understands the child through play. The trusting and non-judgemental relationship between a child and therapist allows the child to have the freedom to express themselves.
Reasons for attending Play Therapy
- Separated/Divorced parents
- Communication problems
- Autistic spectrum
- Under performing
- Delayed Development
- Social Exclusion
For more information listen to Wicklow Play Therapist Annemarie O'Riordan's interview on Newstalk FM where she discusses in depth the value of Play Therapy and the methods which are employed. The podcast is entitled "Worry monsters and Play Therapy for anxious kids.
Benefits of Play Therapy
Play is essential for children to develop physically, emotionally and socially. It fosters imagination and creativity. Encourages confidence and concentration. It helps children to make friends and learn about their ever expanding world.
Play can be used to establish or build on a relationship. it is used when 'talking therapy' doesn't work, which is very often with children. Play Therapy also gives parents a better understanding of childrens emotions and anxieties.