Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT)

What is
Parent Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT)?

PCIT, or Parent-Child Interaction Therapy, was developed by Dr. Sheila Eyberg for children from age 2 up to age 7 with externalized behavioral disorders. PCIT Therapy is based on parenting theories proving the success of authoritative parenting styles in helping with behavioral and social issues with children. The first part of treatment is the CDI phase or child-directed interaction. Parents are taught specific guidelines while interacting with their child during child play therapy, including praising, reflecting, and imitating their child. These methods used during child play therapy help create a secure and stronger child-parent relationship.

The second part of treatment is called PDI or parent-directed interaction. In this phase, parents are taught ways in which they can gain authority over their child in situations where he or she may be disruptive. Parents learn how to direct their children with appropriate instructions and how to provide consistent consequences with the help of their therapist. All PCIT therapy sessions are conducted using a one-way mirror, and a ‘bug in the ear,’ which allows the therapist to coach the parent while the parent is interacting with their child.

How can PCIT help my child?

PCIT can help children with a wide array of issues ranging from mild to severe. PCIT most commonly treats children with emotional and behavioral issues, sometimes stemming from conduct problems and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder). Parent-Child Interaction Therapy has been proven very effective with behaviorally challenging young children, helping to reduce these disruptive behaviors while improving their ability to respond to more effective parenting expectations.

What are some of the possible outcomes of PCIT?

Statistical and Clinical Research has shown significant improvement in behavioral and disruptive issues in children after participating in Parental Child Interaction Therapy once a week over the course of treatment, which averages 14-16 weeks It can help your parent-child relationship between you and your child, forming a special bond, while still establishing authority to help with behavioral issues that affect your child.

Related Family Innovations Therapy Services

Child Parent Psychotherapy

Early Childhood Mental Health Services

Contact us today at Family Innovations counseling services if you believe your child may benefit from Parent-Child Interaction Therapy.

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