“Three things in my life saved me from going down a path of misery and depression:  my mother, God, and the staff (at Headway)…With each struggle I face now, I am filled with the courage and skills to take a healthy approach to fixing whatever it is that is I am having trouble with.”

- Headway Client

Headway Minute

May 10, 2012

National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day

Today is National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day. At Headway Emotional Health Services, we believe it is important to acknowledge the improvements being made in all areas of mental health services. Advances for children and adolescents are driven by people who are dedicated to providing them with skills and opportunities they need to grow into successful adults. Headway contributes to and benefits from many of these developments through our partnerships and training from researchers, educators, state-wide and national professional organizations.

Childhood Trauma

Childhood trauma and its resulting impact on short and long term mental health issues is one area where research has contributed to the development of more effective and lasting interventions. Headway has been providing research-based supports and treatment to children who have experienced trauma for more than 40 years. As new protocols are developed, we incorporate them quickly into our daily work through training and continuing education.

Without treatment, exposure to trauma in childhood can have costly and lasting consequences. Studies show that 76% of children exposed to traumatic events in the first three years of life are likely to have one or more delays in their cognitive, language, or emotional development. Adults who experienced abuse, chronic neglect, caregiver mental illness, violence, or other difficult family situations in their early childhood are also more likely to have health problems, including substance abuse, depression, heart disease, and diabetes.

When working with children, a key to successful treatment is having a complete assessment of their mental health and behavioral history, from which a customized treatment plan can be developed. Properly-trained therapists, with a variety of coping and teaching techniques within their tool box, must understand a child's individual developmental needs and capabilities in order to formulate an effective treatment plan.

Research emphasizes the importance of encouraging resilience during early childhood. Positive relationships and environments that support healthy development (cognitive, emotional, physical, and social) provide the foundation children need to acquire the resources and skills they will require in order to cope with and adapt to adversity throughout their childhood and beyond.

Momentum is growing across human services disciplines to focus on the possibility of preventing mental, emotional and behavioral disorders through a variety of interventions with children, families, and communities. Studies of trauma, neurodevelopment, and resilience are pointing toward a new approach to emotional health that increases wellness and decreases disease.

We Can Help

Headway provides a variety of therapeutic and support services to children with mental health issues, as well as their families. Headway has several therapists specifically trained in working with children. In addition to our clinic-based services in Richfield and Golden Valley, our staff provides therapy services to children at more than 15 schools throughout the Twin Cities. For high school students whose mental health issues disrupt their ability to stay in their home school, Headway provides Day Treatment services that are coordinated with schooling provided by Intermediate School District 287.

Along with services for children and adolescents, Headway serves adults through individual, group, and family therapy. Mental health issues affect the entire family. Offering services to all ages allows families access to support in a collaborative setting.

To learn more about the array of services Headway provides, please visit us at Headway Emotional Health Services.

Pat Dale, CEO
Headway Emotional Health Services

Powered by: Avallo Panel