Where to find a pediatric behavioral health therapist for your child.

You have decided that you want to seek out behavioral health for your child or teen. This may be due to behaviors you are experiencing at home, stress that has occurred, or behaviors reported by teachers that are affecting your child’s school performance. Whatever the reason may be for seeking support from a licensed behavioral health therapist, you now have to find that specific professional who you can trust and rely on to be a part of your inner circle. You may have attempted to do a Google search and were inundated with information and options, but became overwhelmed and stopped your search. If you are still stuck in your search for a pediatric behavioral health therapist, here are some tips on how to find the right company with the right professional for you.

1. Identify your concerns. What concerns are you bringing to the therapist? When you are able to identify your exact need, you will be able to refine your search to those that have experience supporting that specific need. If you are searching for someone who can provide parenting strategies, seeking out someone trained in Triple P, or the Positive Parenting Program, would be appropriate. If your child has experienced trauma, it would be beneficial to seek out a professional who has a background in understanding the impacts of trauma on a child or teen.

2. Talk with your pediatrician. Your pediatrician should be informed of the options with your community for pediatric behavioral health. They can discuss these options with you and refer you to a company or individual who they have grown to respect and trust in caring for their patients.

3. Have discussions with others in your community. If you are open to engaging with others about your concerns, talk to people that you trust about their experience with pediatric behavioral health. If they have had a behavioral health therapist before, prompt a discussion about what that was like for them, where they sought those services, and how they started their engagement with the services.

4. Know your insurance type and benefits. The behavioral health services that you are seeking may be covered by insurance when working with certain companies or professionals. Be sure to ask what insurances are covered or what your co-pay would be with the insurance you have. Being able to attend sessions consistently is key to success; therefore you would want to ensure that the sessions are financially feasible for your family. You may also consider contacting your insurance company and asking what providers in the area work with your insurance for pediatric behavioral health.

It can seem overwhelming to get the process started to obtain pediatric behavioral health services, however there are plenty of avenues to ease those feelings. As stated above your pediatrician can be a valuable resource, as well as your local Department of Social Services. The Department of Social Services can recommend therapists in the area that they are aware of and work with on a regular basis. Lastly, it is okay to switch therapists if you find the one you have started with is not a right fit for you and your family. Successful behavioral health therapy relies on a working professional relationship between the family and provider. As you begin your journey into pediatric behavioral health, use the tips above to find the right behavioral health therapist that works for you, your child, and your needs.

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