For Parents of Children and Teens with Anxiety or OCD-Related Disorders.

Child psychologists in our New York and Virginia offices are offering a new parent-based treatment to address child and adolescent anxiety. SPACE is an evidence based treatment that is effective in treating anxiety and/or OCD related disorders. This novel approach was developed at the Yale Child Study Center by Dr. Eli Lebowitz, and is a systematic program that teaches parents how to supportively and appropriately respond to their child’s anxiety through changes in their own behaviors.  By reducing an ‘accommodating’ approach to a child’s anxiety, parents are able to engage in a manner that ultimately enhances the child’s ability to cope with anxious thoughts and feelings and reduce avoidance behaviors that are due to anxiety.

Parents are taught to calmly accept a child’s distress, while avoiding reactions that exacerbate symptoms, resulting in significant improvements to their child’s anxiety. This new approach was pioneered at Yale and is considered an evidence based treatment approach to childhood anxiety that has proven effective.

Parent-Only Treatment that Teaches You How to Manage your Child’s Anxiety

Family accommodation is a way that some parents engage with their children in order to decrease their anxiety. Instead of helping their child to avoid anxiety-provoking stimuli, parents will learn new ways to engage that encourage confronting, rather than avoiding, their child’s fears. The goal of SPACE training is to affect change in family behavior by teaching parents how best to respond to their anxious child.  Through this kind of treatment, parents can develop the tools to effectively address their child’s anxiety and learn how to reduce some of their own accommodating behaviors.

To learn more about SPACE treatment, you can watch this interview with Dr. Lebowitz.

If you’re interested in scheduling an appointment with one of our SPACE trained therapists, please call our New York or Virginia offices.

The New York office will be offering a 7-week (virtual) SPACE group for parents of anxious children later this fall. LEARN MORE here.