Clinical Psychology For Children & Young People
Dr. Helen Williams
Chartered Clinical Psychologist
C. Psychol., D.Clin.Psych., B.Sc. (Hons.)
I specialise in the assessment, formulation, and treatment of difficulties experienced by children, adolescents, and their families. I work collaboratively with individuals and their families to explore areas of difficulty, develop a shared understanding of the problem, identify goals for change, and generate an agreed plan for the most appropriate and effective way forward. This can involve one-to-one sessions with children or adolescents, sessions with parents, or sessions where parents and children/adolescents attend together. There may also be times where it is helpful and appropriate for other family members, such as siblings or grandparents, to attend.
I work as an integrative practitioner, drawing from a variety of theoretical frameworks to ensure that interventions are individualised and person-centred. All my work is evidence-based, making use of my own clinical experience and knowledge of the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) Guidelines. The main models I draw upon in my current practice are Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), attachment-based interventions such as Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy and Therapeutic Parenting, and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). I also regularly use ideas from Systemic Therapy to inform my practice.
I believe that the foundation for effective psychological work is a strong therapeutic relationship and I have a professional style which is warm, empathic, and curious. By meeting children, adolescents, and their families where they are at, and taking an accepting and non-judgemental stance, I aim to create a therapeutic relationship within which individuals can feel safe, secure, and empowered to make changes. I hope to support children and their families to enhance their wellbeing, build resilience, and ultimately thrive.
I am able to offer therapeutic interventions to assist in a wide variety of issues, including (but not limited to):
Problems of early childhood such as toileting (encopresis or enuresis), sleeping, eating, challenging behaviour, and separation anxiety;
Anxiety, including generalised anxiety, health anxiety, social anxiety, phobias, panic, separation anxiety, and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD);
Depression and low mood;
Eating problems, including over- or under-eating and faddy/fussing eating;
Trauma, including single-event traumas (e.g. a car crash) or multiple traumas (e.g. childhood abuse);
Emotion regulation difficulties and self-harm;
Interpersonal issues, such as difficulties forming or maintaining relationships;
Anger and aggression;
Difficulties relating to chronic health conditions;
Difficulties associated with Autism Spectrum Disorders (including managing emotions, anxiety, social skills, managing challenging behaviour, sleep etc.);
Adjustment to life events (divorce, changing schools, bereavement or illness in the family
If your child’s difficulty is not listed here, please do not hesitate to contact me and we can discuss whether I am able to help. If I feel that I am not the best person to help, I will direct you towards other services and sources of support.
I also offer specialist assessment, formulation, and interventions for children and young people in Care, or who have been adopted. At times, multi-level interventions are needed and I am able to offer both direct and indirect therapeutic interventions. I am experienced in offering expert clinical consultancy, support, supervision, and bespoke training to those caring for and/or working with young people, such as foster carers, adoptive parents, schools, social workers and residential homes.
Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (2016), University of Southampton
Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology (2002), University of Leeds
Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy and Practice (DDP) - Level Two, The Centre for Emotional Development , November 2018
Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy and Practice (DDP) - Level One, The Centre for Emotional Development , June 2017
I have worked in the NHS since 2010 supporting clients across the lifespan, addressing a range of severe and enduring mental health difficulties and using a range of evidence-based psychological interventions. I have also worked within Independent Child Services. Before working for the NHS I also gained experience working for a national mental health charity, and in a therapeutic residential children’s home.
I am a member of the British Psychological Society (BPS) and adhere to their policies, including their Code of Practice
I am registered as a Practitioner Psychologist with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)
These are regulatory bodies and I adhere to their policies regarding continuing professional development and regular supervision.