While counseling can be beneficial to anyone, it is especially important to those who have experienced trauma like foster children. If you are wondering if you should take your child to counseling, here are a few signs that may indicate that it could be beneficial.
The most common sign in children or young adults that may need counseling is behavioral problems. If your foster child is acting out – such as excessive arguing, complaining, or showing defensive behaviors – it may require a closer look. Sometimes, these behaviors are your child’s way of asking for help.
Regression is a common occurrence when faced with big changes or traumatic experiences, and therefore affects many foster children. Some signals of regression could be bedwetting, temper tantrums, baby talk or clinginess. If these actions are out of the norm for your child, it may be worth looking into counseling.
Shift in interests, hobbies, habits
While it is normal for children to have changes in interests or hobbies while growing up, it could be cause for concern if it happens more frequently or suddenly than usual. Shifts in sleeping or eating habits may also occur, which counseling could benefit.
Tara Elsner, Necco’s Vice President of Behavioral Health, says, “The biggest thing to know is that if you or a loved one are experiencing symptoms that is impacting their functioning, get help."
Persistent sadness or anxiety
Any type of excessive emotions of worry or sadness could be cause for concern if they begin to consume your foster child’s thoughts and actions. Some signs of these emotions include frequent crying, self-isolation or avoidance of certain situations.
Difficulty with school
Academics can be challenging for any child or young adult, but there may be a point at which therapy can help. Declining grades, difficulty concentrating or frequent complaining/attempting to get out of school could all be signs that they could benefit from counseling.
It is important to note that this is not exhaustive list of signs. If you believe you're child needs counseling, trust your instincts. To learn more about Necco's behavioral health services, visit our website or make a counseling appointment.