Meet Your Counselor

Amber (she/her/hers) was born and raised in Burlington, NC – right down the road from Greensboro. She has experience working with children on the autism spectrum and families providing individualized care for each client. She utilizes a combination of therapeutic approaches such as art and play therapy. She believes that focusing on your strengths, as an individual and a family, as well as identifying obstacles and creating effective strategies will help achieve the goals you set together. CLICK HERE to see if Amber is a good fit for you.

Play is a child’s work and this is not a trivial pursuit.” -Alfred Adler

Play Therapy in Greensboro, North Carolina

 

What is play therapy?

Play therapy is a method that our counselors utilize to help kids and even adults navigate emotional challenges. If you think about it, play is one of the first forms of learning utilized.

Children from an early age learn to express themselves using play, toys, and related items. A common example of this is seen in a 6-year child holding their stuffed animal only after challenging moments. The counselor can observe that the child displays sadness yet struggles verbally share that they are sad and why they are sad.

The counselor can use play therapy to help the child navigate their feeling and learn to process the emotion in a healthy and constructive way. This can help the child to process the feeling versus holding it in and projecting it out in a negative manner. Such as anger outbursts or self-harm.

Play therapy can support your child with developing their fine and gross motor skills, sharing thoughts and feelings, expressing deep emotions, developing language skills, and improving their mindset.

Early in life, parents begin play-related activities with their kids. A parent may use a certain toy with their toddler to highlight emotion. The child uses the toy when they are trying to express emotion.

As a father and counselor, I love using play therapy. It’s a wonderful way to remove the pressure of having to speak during typical counseling sessions. Play therapy invites your child to do just that. Play with varying items that are provided to them in the counseling office.  

How play therapy helps kids

Play therapy can help kids identify why they are experiencing certain feelings and process the feelings in a healthy, constructive manner. Together with the counselor, your child can learn how to feel comfortable with their feelings and strength in knowing that it is okay to feel versus the mindset that feeling certain emotions makes them “weird” or “weak.”

Kids can use play therapy to learn how to navigate and solve life challenges. When your child works with a play therapist, they can learn how to continue the practice at home. This, in essence, helps your child to build confidence in knowing that they are able to support themselves with life challenges.

Common benefits of play therapy:

  • Build self-respect.
  • Learn to take responsibility for your actions.
  • Process feelings.
  • Empathy for others.
  • Engage in self-care.
  • Fully experience the feelings and emotions you are going through.
  • Learn to connect with others.
  • Get to know yourself.
  • Reduce stress.

Typical clients that seek play therapy

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Eating disorders.
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD)
  • Trauma.
  • Bullying.
  • Oppositional defiance.
  • Learning disabilities.
  • Family challenges such as divorce or separation.

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Common strategies and techniques that play therapists use:

Play therapists use varying items that help their client navigate their thoughts and feelings in a healthy way.

  • Storytelling
  • Construction toys
  • Sand trays
  • Stuffed animals
  • Art
  • Movement
  • Blocks
  • Toys
  • Puppets
  • Dance
  • Playdough
  • Water play
  • Music
  • Slime
  • Creating craft
  • Action figures
Play Therapy In Greensboro North Carolina Helping Kids With Anger Management, Autism Disorder Spectrum, And Eating Disorders

How play therapy helps kids

Play therapy can help kids identify why they are experiencing certain feelings and process the feelings in a healthy, constructive manner. Together with the counselor, your child can learn how to feel comfortable with their feelings and strength in knowing that it is okay to feel versus the mindset that feeling certain emotions makes them “weird” or “weak.”

Kids can use play therapy to learn how to navigate and solve life challenges. When your child works with a play therapist, they can learn how to continue the practice at home. This, in essence, helps your child to build confidence in knowing that they are able to support themselves with life challenges.

Play Therapy In Greensboro, North Carolina Helping Kids With Autism DisorderCommon benefits of play therapy:

  • Build self-respect.
  • Learn to take responsibility for your actions.
  • Process feelings.
  • Empathy for others.
  • Engage in self-care.
  • Fully experience the feelings and emotions you are going through.
  • Learn to connect with others.
  • Get to know yourself.
  • Reduce stress.

Play therapy in the counseling office

Play therapy is an effective form of therapy because it acts as a medium for processing emotions and deep feelings. Kids and adults often experience challenges and life and, from time to time, will internalize the experience or express it in a non-direct manner. This makes it really challenging for others to understand what the person is going through.

A common example of this is seen in a child having a challenging day at school due to bullying taking place. He gets home and isolates himself in his room. As a 12-year-old, his parents think that it’s normal pre-teen behavior. So they give him the space to spend his time in his room. Deep down, he is struggling and uses isolation to escape.

Play therapy can support him with processing the experiencing and learning to address the challenges taking place in life. The counselor can use playing cards, toys, or even a video game as a form of play. During play, he is able to feel comfortable and reduce stress. The counselor can observe his behavior and ask questions based on the behaviors taking place. Play therapy truly gives the counselor depth to understanding what is taking place.

Play Therapy In Greensboro, North Carolina Helping Kids With Attention Deficit Disorder ADHDPlay therapy can help:

  • Kids that are on the Autism Spectrum.
  • Kids that are experiencing challenges at school.
  • Kids that are having behavior problems.
  • Kids that struggle with aggressive behaviors.
  • Kids with learning disabilities.
  • Kids that have a hard time managing anger.
  • Kids exposed to abuse such as domestic violence.
  • Kids experiencing anxiety or depression.
  • Kids with developmental delay.

Is play therapy just for kids?

Play therapy can be effective for adults because it can be relaxing and low in stress. At times the idea of having to sit down with a mental health counselor to discuss deep emotional challenges and past events can be overwhelming.

Working with a counselor and using play therapy can help adults to address life challenges in a different way. Remember, there are varying forms of therapy. If you are interested in play therapy, please contact us at [email protected].