Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) was developed in the 1960's by Dr. Aaron T. Beck. It is a time-sensitive, present-oriented form of psychotherapy. CBT is based on the cognitive model: a person's perception of a situation influences their emotional and behavioral reactions. The thoughts that come to our mind in any given situation are automatic and can lead to a variety of emotional or behavioral responses. Many people accept their automatic thoughts as being true without examining the validity of them. Difficulties can arise when we make a mistake in our thinking. Cognitive Behavior therapists help people identify and change their unhelpful thinking as well as learn skills to help cope with related feelings. Research has found CBT to be effective for depression, anxiety, and a variety of other health conditions.


Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) was developed by psychologist Marsha M. Linehan in the 1980's. The Biosocial Theory of DBT suggests that some people have a higher degree of sensitivity to emotions, have a more heightened response, and are slower to return back down to baseline. When a person does not know how take care of their emotional sensitivity, extreme behaviors can develop. The person may learn ways of managing the emotions that are effective in the short-term but problematic in the long-term. Learning to manage emotions that are more sensitive to the outside world requires learning and practicing specialized skills. DBT combines mindfulness (acceptance) with skills training (change strategies) to help teens manage emotions and change behaviors. 


In play therapy, toys are like the child's words and play is the child's language (Landreth, 2002). For children, play is a natural medium of self-expression. Play allows children to express thoughts and feelings in a developmentally appropriate manner when they may not have the verbal language to do so. Although anyone can benefit from play therapy, it is especially appropriate for children ages 3 to 12. Play therapy can help children express emotions in a healthy way, develop creative solutions to problems, learn new social skills, and develop self-efficacy.

Stacking Blocks