Should I tell my child’s doctor they are in therapy?

by | May 21, 2021 | Blog

Connecting your pediatrician & therapist

Here at IFC we want to build a team around your child and family; one that understands the ins and outs of your child’s needs and how best to care for them. That includes parents, teachers, and other professionals involved in their lives – including their doctors! Integrating your child’s mental and physical health care helps everyone use a whole child approach in their work.

Will it be helpful?

Connecting all the professionals supporting your child strengthens the whole team and enhances the care each person provides.

The time that your child spends with their therapist is extremely valuable not only for their emotional well-being, but for their long-term health care. Your child’s health care will benefit from giving your pediatrician the full picture of your child’s educational, emotional, or social growth in therapy. Your pediatrician can use this information to support your child’s specific needs to create a treatment plan that aligns with that of their therapist. With better knowledge of your child’s distinct needs, their pediatrician will be more inclined to notice triggers and feel prepared if difficult situations arise.

Physical health and mental health are connected

Although the body and mind are often viewed as being separate, mental and physical health are closely related. When things are going well, mental health can positively affect your child’s physical health. In return, poor mental health can negatively impact your child’s physical health. For example, anxiety has been found to be correlated to stomach aches. Challenges with emotional regulation can contribute to difficulty with potty training. The developmental milestones your pediatrician asks you about at your yearly well-child visits are intertwined with emotional and behavioral health.

Our doctors hold a lot! Many attempt to monitor mental health by incorporating depression, ADHD, and anxiety screenings into their visits and would love to hear what your child is working on with their therapist so that they can use that information to support your child’s pediatric care.

How to connect your child’s professionals

  1. Talk to your child’s therapist, tell them your hopes for getting them involved.
  2. Your next step would be to fill out a release of information with your child’s therapist to allow for open communication between the two parties. 

Remember, your child’s therapist is their advocate and wants to see them succeed. With your help, your child can begin to feel that everyone is on the same page, cheering them on in their progress.

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