Psychology can positively impact children’s behaviour, mental health and development.

How can psychology help?

Mental Health



What is Psychology?

Psychology is a discipline where health professionals support families with concerns about their child’s development, behaviour, emotional regulation, academic performance and/or other mental health concerns. Psychologists utilise a number of tools to assess the needs of their clients and support them to overcome some of life’s challenges. At Youthrive, our psychologists work with families and children to promote healthy development and learning.

We can help children with

  • Developing social understanding, social skills and social confidence
  • Understanding and managing their emotions
  • Developing coping skills
  • Overcoming adversity, fears, anxiety and processing grief and trauma
  • Building healthy relationships and attachments with parents and family members
  • Learning strategies to overcome learning difficulties
  • Developing independence and understanding the importance of personal safety
  • Boost their confidence and self-esteem

Psychological Assessments

The purpose of an assessment is to identify in which specific areas children may require specialised support or to assist in the process of diagnosis. It is an important part of helping to understand your child and their needs. Assessments may include interviews with parents and other stakeholders, observations of your child, meeting your child and asking them questions, consulting with your child’s school and/or completing questionnaires about your child.


Academic assessments are conducted using the Wechsler Individual Achievement Test (WIAT), typically in conjunction with a cognitive assessment. These assessments identify areas of academic strength or difficulty in school age children and also assist with diagnosis of specific learning disorders.

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Youthrive provides comprehensive DSM-5 ADHD assessments. These assessments are conducted by a psychologist and consist of a parent/caregiver interview, observation of the child at school or day care and administration of the Conner 3 ADHD ratings scales. A cognitive assessment is often also administered as part of this comprehensive assessment.

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Youthrive provides comprehensive DSM-5 Autism assessments in conjunction with your paediatrician or psychiatrist. These assessments are conducted by a multidisciplinary team and consist of a parent/caregiver interview, observation of the child at school or day care and administration of the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS), the gold standard tool in autism assessment.

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Cognitive assessments can be provided for children aged from 2 ½ to 17 years of age. These cognitive, or IQ tests, provide an indication of ability in areas such as language and comprehension, practical reasoning, processing speed and working memory, as well as an overall cognitive ability score. They assist with identifying any cognitive impairments, including Intellectual disability and also help with determining a child’s specific cognitive strengths and difficulties.

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Rebates and Funding Programs

While Youthrive is a fee paying service, some Medicare and private health insurance rebates may be available for our services. Families are encouraged to speak with their GP and nominated health fund to find out whether they are eligible for various rebates. Please note rebates listed below are subject to change without notice.

Better Access to Mental Health - Medicare
Chronic Disease & Complex Needs initiative (Formerly known as Enhanced Primary Care Plan)
Helping Children with Autism initiative – Medicare
Follow Up Allied Health Services for People of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander Descent
Helping Children with Autism (HCWA) and Better Start for Children with Disability
Better Start for Children with Disability - Medicare

We Support Families by offering

A number of therapy styles and approaches in order to support children, young people and their families. Because the ‘one size fits all’ rule does not always apply, treatment plans often include a combination of therapy styles in order to develop specialised plan for the individual.

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT)

CBT is where we learn about how thoughts and feelings influence behaviours. It is often the gold standard psychologists use to manage issues of depression, anxiety and stress. Research shows CBT can be effective for children from preschool age and above, and can be delivered individually or in a group. It is also effective for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Trauma-informed CBT (TF-CBT) is also suitable for children who have experienced adverse childhood experiences such as abuse and neglect.

Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT)

IPT recognises that social connections are important to our emotional coping, especially with issues such as grief and loss, transitions/changes, and interpersonal difficulties. Second to CBT, IPT can be effective for teenagers and adolescents who are suffering from depression, and effective at preventing further episodes of depression.

Family Therapy (FT; also known as Family and Systemic Psychotherapy)

FT aims to help people and families function better in their relationships through understanding their interaction patterns with each other and developing appropriate skills. FT can be implemented one-on-one or in group form (couple, a part of, or the whole family).

Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) and Functional Behaviour Analysis (FBA)

Positive Behaviour Support is a process where challenging behaviours are examined in their functions and incorporated with the child’s strengths to formulate a plan of action (PBS plan). Psychologists often work with caregivers (parents, teachers) and the individual child to collect data using a functional behaviour analysis (FBA) before creating and implementing this plan.

PBS is often implemented in mainstream and special education, and with children with intellectual disabilities or developmental disorders (e.g. Autism Spectrum Disorder).

We provide support for parents for:

Managing challenging behaviours

Understanding their child

Forming healthy bonds and attachments with their children

Learning parenting strategies

Managing their own personal stresses and anxieties

Frequently Asked Questions

If you’re worried about your child’s emotional and social wellbeing, development or behaviour it is best to seek professional advice as soon as possible.

Some common signs you should be aware of that may indicate your child should see a psychologist are listed below. It’s important to remember that every child is different and you should consider whether your child’s behaviour is appropriate for their developmental level. The following signs are given only as a guide. Please click here, if you’d like to make an appointment with one of our Psychologists.

Psychology Red Flag Checklist

  • Academic difficulty
  • Constant or intense feelings of worry, stress or fear
  • Hyperactivity or difficulty concentrating, remembering things, processing information or problem solving
  • Physical or emotional meltdowns
  • Poor social skills
  • Change to behaviour e.g. irritability, withdrawal or difficulty separating
  • Low mood
  • Disrupted sleep or eating patterns
  • Compulsive or repetitive behaviour

No. Although a referral from your GP, Paediatrician or Psychiatrist may entitle to you Medicare rebates which can contribute to the cost of sessions

The first appointment is usually with the parent/s or carer/s, without your child present. This is so that your psychologist can collect background information about your child and so that you can cover all your concerns in detail. However if you are on a Medicare Care Plan your child will need to be present for the initial consultation. In the first appointment, your psychologist will ask detailed information about your child’s family history, health, development and education, and about the current concerns you have. This may include questions about stressors that may be affecting the family. You do not have to answer any questions that you do not wish to and you can always ask the psychologist why they are asking if you are unsure about a question. We appreciate if any previous reports can be brought along to the first session, if you are happy to share these with your psychologist.

Therapy is different for every child, but it may include direct work with your child and also strategies for you to put in place at home to assist your child’s behaviour, emotional wellbeing and development. Some therapy sessions may consist of game play and play-based activities. Others may involve the completion of therapeutic tasks (e.g worksheets, role plays). Most therapy sessions will involve the discussion of current events relevant to the individual in addition to their associated thoughts, behaviours and emotions.

Psychology is not a ‘quick fix’ and requires hard work and commitment from families. Improvements may be gradual and occur over a period of weeks or even months

Children and families can withdraw from treatment at any stage. This typically occurs when a child has made significant progress and/or when their reasons for initiating psychology support are no longer detrimental to their everyday lives. It is always a good idea to have a regular check-up every few months following the completion of therapy. This can be likened to having your car serviced. It is always a good idea to ensure that things are continuing to work smoothly.

Our workshops & group sessions

Youthrive runs regular interactive workshops for parents, caregivers, educators and children providing a great opportunity to learn how therapy works, receive practical advice and gain support from other families with the same experiences.

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The Youthrive team are passionate about helping kids and young people reach their full potential.

Our dedicated team of qualified professionals provide a number of therapy services including Occupational Therapy, Speech Pathology, Dietetics and Psychology. They have worked with clients with a range of needs and embrace Youthrive’s collaborative approach to therapy.

First Appointment

If you are a parent who has not had any experience with therapy services for your child, the process can seem quite overwhelming. Here’s what to expect at your first appointment.


Initial Consultation

The initial appointment is typically one hour in duration. Your child will attend this session for Speech Pathology, Dietetics and Occupational Therapy. For Psychology appointments you will need to check if your child is required for the initial consultation at the time of booking.


Information Session

The therapist will ask detailed information about your child’s family history, health and development, education and any concerns you may have.


Goals & Assessment

An assessment may be commenced during this initial appointment and goals for therapy will be established.