Along with CBT and exposure therapy for children and adolescents, Dallas CBT also offers behavior management for children and parent coaching, which involves helping parents develop more effective strategies for managing their child’s behaviors.
Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) is an empirically supported treatment for young children (i.e., ages 2 to 7) struggling with a broad range of behavioral problems, including defiance, non-compliance, aggression, and tantrums. PCIT focuses on two broad goals: 1) improving the quality of the parent-child relationship, and 2) giving the parent the skills to manage their child’s behaviors. As such, PCIT actively involves the parent in each step of treatment; the goal is for the child’s behaviors to improve when interacting with the parent, not just with the therapist. Rather than having parents come to therapy to engage in exhaustive and abstract discussions of what’s going on with their children, PCIT heavily emphasizes direct, hands-on learning through live coaching and skills training.
No child behaves perfectly 100% of the time. However, some children develop a tendency to engage in disruptive or noncompliant behaviors most, if not all, of the time. Struggling with a child who will not follow directions, throws frequent tantrums, becomes aggressive either verbally or physically, or behaves defiantly (“No! I don’t wanna!”) towards their caregiver creates a significant amount of stress within a household. If these behaviors persist, they can result in poor school performance, poor peer and family relationships, delinquency, or worse.
Potential signs of disruptive behavior problems in children:
- Refusal to follow directions
- Verbal or physical aggression
- The feeling that the child is running the household