When selecting a psychologist to help you or your child function more comfortably and successfully in everyday life, there are several key factors to consider. It is important to find someone who not only possesses a doctoral degree, a license to practice psychology, and experience in treating the issues you currently face, but who is compassionate, comforting and a good fit. “Goodness of fit” between therapists and patients has been repeatedly cited as a key factor in achieving effective and lasting improvements. Dr. Robinson is known for putting people at ease and making strong connections with patients and families.
Children learn and communicate through play. Following a difficult or traumatic experience, play therapy can allow a child to express what they cannot or will not put into words. A therapist will observe and interpret a child’s play, and will often put words to what the child cannot. Play therapy can also be helpful in understanding what may be causing a child to feel upset or behave differently. It offers a chance for children to practice and master skills that they may struggle with in real life. Research has consistently demonstrated the benefits of play therapy in facilitating positive outcomes for children.
COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY
Cognitive behavioral therapy is the treatment of choice for a number of issues including depression, anxiety, sleep difficulties, eating disorders, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Tourette’s Syndrome. It involves changing the thoughts and behaviors that are interfering with everyday functioning, and can be used alone or in conjunction with other treatment modalities. Dr. Robinson is experienced in using CBT with individuals of all ages.
COLLABORATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING
Some children seem to blow up fiercely and unpredictably and show a poor response to rewards and punishments. This may occur exclusively at home, or across multiple settings. It is terribly distressing for families to experience these blow-ups, and though the child may seem to cause havoc without regard for others, it is usually terribly distressing for them as well. This type of behavior can leave everyone feeling out of control, and at a loss for ideas. Collaborative Problem Solving is an evidence-based approach created by Harvard psychologist Dr. Ross W. Greene. It involves teaching lagging cognitive skills in areas such as frustration, flexibility and problem solving, identifying triggers for your child’s explosive behavior, and getting parents and children to work together to reduce the frequency and intensity of explosive behavior and make lasting, positive changes.
Oftentimes with adolescents and adults who are engaged in talk therapy, it is beneficial to use a combination of approaches to psychotherapy to facilitate improved coping and insight. Dr. Robinson has a strong background in psychodynamic psychotherapy which she combines with elements of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, mindfulness and other relaxation strategies.
WHAT TO EXPECT
When calling or emailing to schedule an appointment you will need to provide basic information such as your name and date of birth (or your child’s if applicable) and a brief description of your concerns. You will be asked to bring copies of any relevant medical and educational records to the first appointment, as these can contribute to a more thorough understanding of your case. The appointment, which lasts one hour, is for parents and caregivers only in the case of child therapy, so that concerns can be shared freely.
Therapy sessions typically take place weekly and last 45 minutes. Some children begin treatment with shorter sessions and become better able to tolerate a full 45-minute session over time.
Therapy with children is most effective when parents and caregivers are involved. Separate parent sessions are held at least once per month, allowing family members to discuss their concerns and learn about their child’s progress. Dr. Robinson provides suggestions for managing difficulties that are arising at home or school and with permission, conducts periodic phone contact with teachers and other therapists to promote treatment gains across settings. Questions or concerns should be reserved for these sessions or if urgent, addressed in a phone call, email or note. Discussing the child in his or her presence can be detrimental in a number of ways, particularly if the content is negative. If a child feels concerned about being judged by the therapist or about getting into trouble, they will be less inclined to open up in sessions.
Payment by cash, check or credit card is due at the end of each session. Insurance is not accepted; however, a record of payment is provided and includes the information required for reimbursement through out-of-network benefits. To determine whether you have such benefits, you would contact your carrier’s behavioral health division, and inquire about reimbursement for CPT codes 90791, 90834 and 90837. When approved, reimbursement typically covers between 50% and 80% depending upon your plan and deductible. Private payment is beneficial because it allows for greater privacy and flexibility in treatment.