Lincoln Park Psychology offers comprehensive, dynamic, and competent therapeutic services for children and adolescents. Our clinicians use a strength-based, supportive approach when working with this delicate and complex population. Each child/adolescent is viewed as an individual and our clinicians spend time identifying each client's unique needs, strengths, and goals. At Lincoln Park Psychology, we are dedicated to finding effective interventions tailored to each client's needs; therefore, we incorporate various creative modalities into our work such as play, art, music, sand-tray and other expressive/interactive methods.
We work to establish long-lasting change, whether your child is struggling with a temporary transitional situation, or your child is engaged in deeper negative thought/emotional processes. In order to produce this change, we are dedicated to engaging the family/parent system in the process, collaborating as we move through growth. We treat a wide range of presenting issues including but not limited to: experiences of mood disturbances, struggles with anxiety/fear, social/peer relationship issues, risk-taking behaviors, self-esteem/self-image issues, identity transitions, coping with family issues/changes, and Autism Spectrum Disorder.
At Lincoln Park Psychology, we understand the interplay of both joy and tension in a family system. Caregiving can be one of the most rewarding and most stressful tasks undertaken. Asking for help in difficult times is brave can be extremely beneficial for your family. Our clinicians are skilled at working with each family's individual dynamics to improve communication, resolve conflicts, and create more cohesive functioning in the home environment. Our competent clinicians are also available to help families through changes and transitions such as moving, separation/divorce, loss, and other stressors.
Lincoln Park Psychology is committed to affirming care that serves the diverse needs of LGBTQIA+ youth. We acknowledge that both gender identity and sexual orientation are fluid, existing on spectrums with infinite expressions. We further recognize that this is a time of shifting narratives around gender and sexual orientation, which present opportunities for youths to see themselves represented, and build awareness around their own unique identities. Youth and adolescence can be a tumultuous time in general, but especially challenging for LGBTQIA+ youths if those in their environment (school, family, friends, community) struggle with understanding or acceptance. Affirming mental health care can be a preventative measure against the stigma and trauma experienced by previous generations. Mental health care for these children and teens aims to help process the dual experiences of growing up different from the norm in their communities while working on acceptance, identity development, and positive mindset.
Lincoln Park Psychology services children and adolescents who are higher functioning on the Autism Spectrum. It is not uncommon for youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder or those with presenting features of the spectrum to feel isolated, different, and misunderstood. Our clinicians work with youth to identify strengths, increase social skills and awareness, as well as set attainable goals for the future in order to promote success and a positive sense of self. We also understand that it is difficult for parents to see their children manage depression, anxiety, or struggle with self-esteem; therefore, our clinicians will not only involve the family in the therapy process, but may conduct separate parenting therapy sessions specifically to aid parents in their journey to find peace and connection.
It is important to note that we do not offer ABA therapy or have a BCBA onsite at this time; although this is a goal for the future. Therefore, we do not currently work with children/adolescents who are lower functioning, nonverbal, or need an ABA focused program for skill building.
Children and adolescents may be more open to feedback, or may be more apt to learn from their peers than from adults in their life. In our various social/emotional learning groups, we find that our young clients benefit from an experience of belonging, connectedness, and inclusion that can be found in a group setting. Our groups are led by skilled clinicians who manage the curriculum and the level of processing in order to facilitate the most growth from the group. We are also open to feedback from families regarding what group formations would be most helpful. Think your child needs a group and cannot find an appropriate one? Send us a suggestion and we can work on a timeline to put a group together.
Lincoln Park Psychology founder, Dr. Wax, has an extensive history of leading therapeutic day schools where students are outplaced when they require an alternative education placement. Her experience lends itself to helping parents navigate classroom struggles as well as special education needs as they pertain to social/emotional goals for the child. In working closely with the school, classroom, academic personnel, and parents, Dr. Wax will work to assess the needs of the child, conduct a classroom visit when advisable, and make recommendations to promote academic and emotional success.
**Please Note: we are waiting for the official licensing for our therapy dogs to come through before we offer this service officially. We are so very excited to introduce this in the near future.**
Animal Assisted Therapy is the use of animal interactions with clients to aid in recovery and help cope with stressors. Often we find that children and adolescents respond positively (where indicated) to the presence of our therapy dogs. The use of canines in animal assisted therapy has been shown to decrease feelings of fear, rage, aggression, and distrust. Animal assisted therapy may also enrich interpersonal relationships, allowing clients to share moments of connection with the animal. In addition, when children/adolescents show anxiety or resistance toward the therapeutic process, often animal assisted therapy allows for a break from the monotony of talk therapy and provides a buffer resulting in therapy being less threatening and more productive.