A Healthy Kid in Both Mind + Body
Raising tiny humans is a big job and requires a lot of appointments. Well-child visits, sick visits, dental cleanings and vision screenings are all expected at various stages of physical development. And while the scheduling logistics may be daunting at times, finding the right provider for these checkups is pretty straightforward.
But what about your child’s social and emotional development? Who can you call for help when confronted with anxiety, depression, or other mental health concerns? The resources here are less clear and often harder to talk about.
When Should I Seek Therapy for my Kid?
According to the CDC, approximately 7% of children in the US are diagnosed with anxiety. This means over 4 million kids can benefit from therapy from this one mental health diagnosis alone.
But how do you know if your child’s behavior warrants mental health treatment?
There are many scenarios in which a mental health provider’s expertise may be warranted. Try this list from the Cleveland Clinic of 11 signs that your child may need a therapist; but above all, trust your gut. If you think your child could use additional help, it’s time to reach out to a professional.
Consult a Mental Health Provider if Your Child:
- Has problems in multiple areas of life, such as family relationships, academic performance, leisure activities and friendships.
- Starts feeling bad about himself or herself, less confident/less effective.
- Shows excessive worry about the future.
- Expresses hopelessness.
- Withdraws from family, friends or activities
- Has a significant change in sleep habits or appetite.
- Engages in negative behavior more frequently.
- Has repetitive, self-destructive behaviors
- Talks about or engages in any kind of self-harm.
- Makes comments like “I wish I weren’t here,” or “Nobody would care if I ran away.”
- Talks explicitly about suicide.
Where to Start
Your pediatrician is always a good starting point for anything health-related for kids- and that includes mental health. And since insurance is less straightforward with mental health coverage, a call to your provider is likely also a smart move.
If uninsured or just looking for resources locally, 211 is another great option to get the ball rolling.
Are you on the search for other health care providers for your family? See the Top Voted Doctors in Kalamazoo with a listing of Dentists, OBGYNS, Pediatricians, etc. who provide medical care in the community.
(Please note that this content is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Users are advised to check the certification of any care providers listed below and consult their own medical doctors before proceeding with a care plan.)
Therapists & Counselors for Kids in Kalamazoo
Emotional and mental health are just as important as physical health for children. These providers have helped local families and are the top-rated mental health professionals in the Kalamazoo area:
Voted Top Mental Health Provider
Kathy Augustine at Desert Streams Christian Counseling
More reader-recommended Mental Health Providers, in order of most votes:
1 – Augustine, Kathy (Desert Streams Christian Counseling)
2 – Fugate, Kendall (Kalamazoo Child & Family Counseling)
3 – (TIE) Briggs, Kristine (Kalamazoo Child & Family Counseling)
3 – (TIE) Dean, Judith (Pine Rest)
3 – (TIE) Hiatt, Kim (Child & Family Psychological Services)
3 – (TIE) Lubinski Matar, Lynnette (Child & Family Psychological Services)
- CDC’s Mental Health Resources
- National Suicide Prevention Hotline
- Pine Rest Psychiatric Urgent Care (in Grand Rapids)
- Psychology Today Therapist Locator
- Free Clinics of Michigan
- Gryphon Place