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Play Therapy Xenia Counseling Orem Utah

Play Therapy


Play Therapy Xenia Counseling Orem Utah

What is Play Therapy?

Play therapy is the use of "play" as a language for children, teens, and adults to communicate needs, thoughts, and sensations by creative means. 

kid playing with legos

How does Play Therapy work?

More commonly Play Therapy is used with children. This allows them to work on social skills, communicating thoughts and emotions, and being able to interact with someone else in a safe space to express themselves. 

During sessions, a child can play out major events and express more emotions than they can typically do with talk therapy. This allows the therapist to interact in real-time with the client as they work through the scenario. 

Together they work on reflecting in the session where the therapist is helping name emotions and making observations.  Non-verbal moments help the therapist and the client have experiences to help address what is going on under the surface.  We try to bring families into the sessions when possible to help our clients have resources with those they live with. 

When working with adults the methods aren't all that different. Many adults have found the value of Sand Tray therapy. This is where the client is able to work with a large tray of sand to visualize feelings and current topics they are processing. They are able to create something to help them see in front of them what they are experiencing internally. Music and Art can help open up adults to process what is additionally underneath the stressors of everyday life, and allow them to connect in a different way to their emotions. 

Sand Tray Xenia Counseling Orem Utah

Types of Play Therapy

A great thing about Play Therapy is that there are SO many types to use. Some of the ones we use are:

  • Sand Tray

  • Art- drawing, painting and other ways to show creativity.

  • Music

  • Playing with toys

  • Games

  • Books

  • Clay/PlayDoh

  • Storytelling

The Sand Tray Office at Xenia Counseling

Issues that Play Therapy can help with:

In children, we see that it helps with a variety of issues. Some of those include:

  • Attention Difficulties (including ADHD diagnosis)

  • Aggression/Anger Issues

  • Grief and Loss

  • Anxiety

  • Autism Behaviors

  • Processing Traumatic Events

  • Family Issues (ie. separations/divorce, sibling dynamics changing, moves, financial difficulties, etc.)

  • Problem Behaviors at School

Those same issues are able to be addressed with adults in Play Therapy, along with:

  • Unresolved Childhood Issues

  • Trauma

  • Intellectual Disabilities

  • Dementia

  • Substance/Addiction Issues

Why do we like Play Therapy?
Hailey Maire Play Therapy

"Play therapy has always been such a fun things for me to do with clients! I loved using it as a method to learn more about my younger clients, and still continue to use it with my teens and adults! We never stop using the language of "play", and it's fun watching those people reconnect with it again!"

-Hailey Maire, LCSW, CST

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