30 Lincoln St. • Newton Highlands, MA 02461 • (617) 899-1060
We can customize our therapies very effectively for special needs patients and their families. We think you'll find our insight, our experience and our empathy in this area uncommon and unsurpassed.
Most elementary school children with special needs have the same remarkable spirit and sense of limitless potential as do their more "typical" counterparts. Because their personalities and self-images are still highly formative and malleable in their childhood years, caregivers of special needs children have a unique window during which to shape how their special needs children will perceive themselves for the rest of their lives.
Family counseling and intervention planning are often the two most impactful ways to help the special needs school-age child. Through family counseling, parents, siblings and even extended family members learn how to help themselves and their loved one to permanently tend toward optimism, courage and self-worth. It also helps family members fully enjoy the gifts that the special needs child can bring into their lives (see below).
In partnership with educators and healthcare professionals, the right academic and social intervention strategies can make a huge difference in how much the special needs child can achieve in school and later in life. Small degrees of early success are likely to multiply as your child grows, making time invested in elementary special education all the more critical. At a high level, we can help you coordinate your interaction with school officials to create an overall strategy for your child. When the situation requires more detailed planning, negotiation or oversight, we can recommend some wonderful licensed special education advocates in the area whose track record is second to none.
Many special needs children will, to a greater or lesser degree, become more aware of their differences and challenges as they get older. Sometimes this can be a source of anxiety and grief, and may also threaten their self-esteem, which is fragile in many adolescents but all the more so in the special needs teen.
The good news is that hypnosis can be a highly effective tool for alleviating anxiety and buttressing self-esteem among some special needs children. While not necessarily a substitute for regular or semi-regular psychotherapy to work through the underlying emotions your teenager is feeling, hypnotherapy may provide fairly quick and substantial relief from the manifestations of those emotions.
Attention-related syndromes such as ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) are being diagnosed more and more commonly, and are often obstacles to academic, professional and social success. For individuals and families receptive to treating these conditions pharmacologically, the advances in medication over the last decade have yielded some remarkably effective results.
Some patients experience great improvement in attention and impulse-control with medications. Others experience relief that seems only partial. For them, and for those who wish to avoid ADHD medications altogether, a short course of targeted hypnotherapy, with occasion reinforcement, can make a noticeable difference both with the attention deficit itself, and with the anxiety, depression and poor self-esteem that are commonly seen as side effects of ADHD.
Brothers and sisters of special needs children have a uniquely diverse set of feeling to adjust to. Many feel sadness and loss about a sibling who isn't there with them to the degree that they'd like them to be. They may feel embarrassment. They may feel neglected if the special needs child demands more of the family's attention. These are all understandable and typically resolve to some degree with maturity. But in childhood, it is a very real source of anguish that can affect siblings and their relationships into their adult years.
Helping these siblings understand and validate their feelings typically requires only a short course of individual counseling. And restoring the full health of the relationships these siblings have within the family can be greatly facilitated by family counseling sessions.
Some mothers and fathers of special needs children experience complex combinations of grief, fear, guilt, anger or sense of helplessness over their child's condition. This can rob them of some of the joy they'd otherwise derive from life inside and outside their family. It can also stress marital relationships.
In simple cases, a short course of hypnotherapy deflects thoughts and worries that get in the way of parents' own happiness. In more complex cases, we'll focus discussion therapy for the greatest relief.