Children & Adolescent Mental Health

Creative therapiesOur Children & Adolescents Service provides psychological help for children and adolescents aged 0-18 years. We have a specialist service for Adopted and Looked After Children (please see separate page). Our Children and Adolescents Service can provide help for a number of issues that present in childhood, including:



Prior to commencing any therapeutic work, we always undertake an assessment. The initial assessment usually takes place in an extended session (1.5 hours). This assessment gives us the opportunity to explore the nature of the child's difficulties in order to offer a formulation about the factors influencing and maintaining problems, and to make some recommendations about the type of approach that might help. Usually, we see children together with their parent/s or carer/s for the initial assessment. In some cases, children or their parents are offered appointments individually, depending on the circumstances.

We also offer In-depth Psychological Assessments which may be required as part of on-going therapeutic work, or may be requested as a stand-alone piece of work. In-depth assessments are different from the, usually briefer, form of assessment involved at the start of therapy. In-depth psychological assessment aims to determine the nature and origins of a problem and/or to enhance understanding about several different aspects of a child's functioning. Usually these types of assessments are requested when a problem arises in a child’s life for which there is no clear explanation, or when a third party is looking to establish the kind of support or environment that a child needs for their well-being. In-depth assessments, depending on the type of problem, may include assessment of a child's emotional well-being (or 'mental health'), their behaviour, interpersonal functioning, cognitive functioning (or IQ), and social functioning. Information about a child's developmental history, including family circumstances, is also taken into account. If appropriate, information about school performance will also be requested. Depending on the age of a child (and circumstances) assessments may include face-to-face assessment with the child, as well as discussions with family members and other professionals involved with the child. If required, we can provide a full written report together with recommendations, following an assessment.


Psychological Therapy

We offer a range of therapeutic services for children and adolescents.  Our therapies include Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Schema Therapy, Eye-Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR), Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP), and Narrative Therapy. We are highly experienced in adapting these therapies so that they are appropriate for the age of the child. We also utilise a number of creative approaches in our therapeutic work with young people, including artwork, craft, play, sand play, puppets, story-telling.


Therapeutic Work With Families

We offer support to parents, helping them to understand the nature of their child's problems, as well as advice about how they can help their child (including parenting approaches). Further to individual therapy for children, we also offer family based therapy, emotional support and psychological therapy to parents, if appropriate.


Work With Professionals

We can provide consultancy to various professionals involved with a child, including teachers, health workers, and social workers.  We can also provide teaching and training to professionals on a number of topics relating to child mental health and child development.

To find out more about our Children & Adolescents Service, please contact us at Purple House.