What is Play Therapy? Play therapy is a type of therapy that is utilized for children ages 2-12. Young children feel most comfortable and capable of expressing their feelings through play, their natural method of communication. In play therapy, children have the opportunity to come into the playroom, a room that has specially selected toys that allow them to talk about and work through their feelings in a developmentally appropriate manner. Through play therapy, children learn to communicate with others, express feelings, modify behavior, develop problem-solving skills, and learn a variety of ways of relating to others. Play provides a safe psychological distance from their problems and allows expression of thoughts and feelings appropriate to their development. *
Why Play Therapy? Young children have not developed the ability to talk and think in the same way adults can. Play is a child's natural way of communicating their thoughts and feelings. When feelings are particularly difficult, play allows a child to feel safe while working in therapy. Play therapy helps children to communicate what is troubling them when they do not have the ability to do so verbally. In play therapy, children have the opportunity to learn adaptive behaviors and to try out new skills in a safe and contained environment.
How Play Therapy Works A trained play therapist can utilize the play to help your child to address their feelings and problems, and find new ways to approach situations. With the assistance of a play therapist, your child learn to confront their emotions through play, and discover healthy solutions to their problems.
* For further information regarding play therapy, please see Association for Play Therapy at www.a4pt.org/