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About Play Therapy
Play Therapy involves the use of play to communicate with children and to help children learn to solve problems and change their negative behaviors. Children naturally engage in play to create meaning and organize their experiences. This allows children to distance themselves from difficult feelings and memories through symbolic expression, using the toys as the medium to disclose these feelings. The therapeutic playroom becomes a safe place to process and explore difficult feelings, fears and inadequacies.

Child centered play therapy utilizes play, the natural language of children, and therapeutic relationship to provide a safe, consistent therapeutic environment in which a child can experience full acceptance, empathy, and understanding from the therapist and process inner experiences and feelings through play and symbols. In CCPT, a child’s experience within the counseling relationship is the factor that is most healing and meaningful in creating lasting, positive change. Based on person-centered principles, the overarching goal of CCPT is to unleash the child’s potential to move toward integration and self-enhancing ways of being. 

Child-Centered Play Therapy is designated as a promising evidence-based mental health intervention by The Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse and the California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare (CEBC).

Play Therapy is recommended for children, of all ages, experiencing a variety of symptoms including:

  • Life transitions such as a move, divorce, blended family


  • Anxiety, generalized fear

  • Self-control/impulsivity

  • Social skills/boundaries

  • Aggressive behaviors

  • Grief/bereavement

  • Sadness/depression

  • Medical trauma

  • Situational trauma

  • Attachment concerns

  • Abuse/Neglect

  • Nightmares/bed wetting

  • Adoption support

  • Strengthening family relationships

  • Bullying/struggling peer relationships

  • Challenges with academic motivation/success

  • Low self esteem

  • Focus/inattention

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