When a youth experiences heightened levels of anxiety and is unable to function in a healthy manner after experiencing, witnessing, or learning about a trauma, it is likely that that young person is battling symptoms synonymous with post-traumatic stress disorder. Also commonly referred to as PTSD, this mental health condition is known to cause a great deal of distress and disruption in a person’s life. Children and adolescents are especially vulnerable to developing this disorder after enduring a trauma as the skills for effectively coping with such an experiences are not yet fully developed. Southwood Psychiatric Hospital is a leader in the field of mental health as a provider of services specialized for children and adolescents who are struggling with disorders, such as PTSD. We include specific programming and treatment methods that are catered to the needs of youth and administer care in a way that is sensitive to the concerns that plague young people most. At Southwood Psychiatric Hospital, we strive to stabilize and better the lives of young people who feel entrenched in their own minds and pain as a result of their traumatic past and help them to realize a future in which mental illness does not govern their existence.
Helping a Loved One or Family Member Get Treatment
Caregivers and parents of youth who are experiencing PTSD symptoms often experience oscillating feelings regarding their child’s mental state after a trauma has occurred. They may feel as though nothing can be done to comfort their child as the symptoms of this disorder can prevent a youth from living a healthy, well-functioning life. They may feel scared for their child in terms of what the future holds when it is apparent that trauma is impacting their child’s life in such a negative way. As a caregiver or parent, you can make help your child get the care that he or she needs so that the symptoms of PTSD no longer have to govern your child’s life. Here are some suggestions for helping your child get treatment:
- Learn all that you can about PTSD, including its symptoms and potential effects.
- Research options for care that can treat a young person who displays symptoms of PTSD.
- Contact a treatment provider to discuss treatment for your child and inquire about the admissions process.
- Schedule an evaluation with a mental health professional at your provider of choice.
- During the evaluation, share details about your child’s trauma so as to avoid and further distress by having your child recount what he or she has experienced.
- Once your child is admitted into a treatment program, be part of your child’s care.
Lastly, feel free to discuss your child’s progress with his or her treatment provider and ask about what you can do to help your child once he or she has completed treatment. Additionally, do not for get to ask about follow-up services and or aftercare recommendations so that your child can remain successful in using the skills he or she learned while in treatment. By seeking effective mental health services for a child battling PTSD, you are helping your child learn skills that will serve him or her well for a lifetime.
Why Consider Treatment at Southwood Psychiatric Hospital
Posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms can vary in their severity depending on the severity of the trauma that a youth experienced, witnessed, or learned about. Oftentimes, young people with this condition will have difficulty performing well at school, especially if he or she is experiencing flashbacks or feels as though the trauma is occurring again. Substance use, unfortunately, is a potential side effect of untreated PTSD as young people may abuse drugs and/or alcohol as a means of coping with unpleasant feelings, memories, or emotions. A child or adolescent’s physical health can be adversely affected when PTSD is a factor in a youth’s life as this disorder is known to cause sleep disturbances, appetite changes, and other physiological changes that could comprise a young person’s good health. Discord among peers and loved ones could become more prevalent as those with posttraumatic stressed disorder often display aggression or become easily upset by small triggers. Parents and caregivers who wish to help their child overcome the symptoms of PTSD and want to avoid the previously mentioned effects should engage their child in treatment is that proven to help these young people heal and successful recover from their traumatic past.
Types of Treatment Offered at Southwood Psychiatric Hospital
As a foremost provider of child and adolescent mental healthcare, Southwood Psychiatric Hospital is devoted to providing the most effective mental health treatment, education, and assisted living services to youth who are battling emotional, behavioral, and cognitive concerns that are unique to young people. We believe that it is necessary to address and care for every need for each of our patients so that the most favorable treatment outcomes are the result. We believe all people are capable of change and possess the capacity to learn new skills and abilities that can serve well for a lifetime. Based on this belief, we facilitate a therapeutic environment that is conducive to healing and change so that each youth entrusted into our care has the opportunity to gain insight about his or her own life and develop positive skills for healthy functioning.
The methods for care utilized at Southwood Psychiatric Hospital include cognitive-behavioral approaches that implement crisis and reality theories. We believe that these approaches, coupled with a structured setting, produce lasting healing and promote interpersonal growth. Cornerstone to the care supplied by Southwood Psychiatric Hospital is individualized treatment planning within a therapeutic milieu that incorporates these approaches within several therapeutic methods. We also encourage each patient’s family to be involved in the therapeutic process so that every child and adolescent reaps the benefits of having ample support while bettering him or herself.
The following treatment methods are those that are featured within the programming offered at Southwood Psychiatric Hospital, methods that are proven to improve the lives of the population we serve:
Medication management: When symptoms of a mental health condition, such as PTSD, or other co-occurring condition require the use of pharmaceutical intervention in order to alleviate said symptoms, the use of medication may be incorporated into a youth’s treatment plan. The need for medication is assessed by a psychiatrist who can then prescribe, monitor, and adjust medication(s) if it is deemed necessary or a youth’s care. Additionally medical personnel, such as nurse practitioners and nurses, assist in the supervision of medication management so that the most effective dosage of a given medication produces the most favorable results. These professionals have contact with patients on a daily basis.
Individual therapy: Held every other day on the child and adolescent inpatient units, individual therapy sessions are afforded to patients so that one-on-one time with a mental health professional can be had in order to help each youth process emotions and monitor treatment goals while in our care. This is a time in which a young person can talk about his or her successes and explore areas for improvement.
Family therapy: The involvement of each patient’s family is integral to the treatment at Southwood Psychiatric Hospital. We facilitate family therapy sessions at least one to two times over the course of a youth’s treatment. During family sessions, youth, caregivers, and other loved ones can work through familial conflicts, improve communication, and learn how to work as a team in ensuring lasting recovery from mental health concerns, such as the presence of posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms. Additionally, we put forth every effort to make sure each young person in our care is able to have contact with his or her family at least once a day.
Group therapy: A myriad of groups are part of the treatment feature in our inpatient programming. Groups allow patients to practice new skills that have been learned, receive additional support from our staff as well as peers, and learn new methods for managing emotions, behaviors, and thoughts. Groups are held four times a day and are led by Master’s level clinicians, nurses, and other experienced professionals. Topics covered within these groups include the following and are based on the cognitive-behavioral therapeutic approach:
- Effective methods for coping
- Teamwork and team building skills
- The importance of and how to follow directions
- Recreation groups
- Stress management techniques
- Social skill development
- Anger management
- Diagnosis education
- Medication education
Experiential therapy: In order to encourage creative expression and stress the benefits of physical activity, Southwood Psychiatric Hospital incorporates numerous experiential therapies into its inpatient programming. The following are examples of the experiential therapies patients are able to participate in during the course of treatment:
- Opportunities for recreation outside
Continuing Care and Levels of Treatment
While the programming offered within Southwood Psychiatric Hospital is focused on patients being able to achieve their treatment goals, we remain dedicated to helping those who come to our hospital for care in succeeding once they have completed their treatment. From the moment a youth is admitted into one of our programs, our staff begins formulating aftercare recommendations that will meet the child or adolescent’s needs. Inpatient treatment, by nature, is designed to stabilize a youth so that the therapeutic process can continue at a lower level of care. Therefore, we conduct an ongoing assessment of needs in order to ensure that referrals to another treatment provider will help a patient continue his or her success long after leaving Southwood Psychiatric Hospital.
Our staff of compassionate and caring professionals will work in collaboration with each youth and his or her family to establish how the youth will retain skills learned and which services in the community will refine and build upon those skills.
Whatever your child or adolescent’s mental health needs may be, let Southwood Psychiatric Hospital be your treatment provider of choice when trying to help your child achieve the life that he or she deserves.