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Child Life On Call: Parents of children with an illness or medical condition share their stories with a child life specialist

Jul 19, 2023

Attention, parents! Have you ever come across these myths while seeking ways to support your child's emotional well-being during healthcare experiences? Myth #1: Children are too young to understand and process their emotions. Myth #2: Therapeutic play is just a form of entertainment, not a valuable tool for emotional support. Myth #3: Children will naturally bounce back emotionally after healthcare experiences. Well, today we have an expert guest, Laura Sufka, who will debunk these myths and shed light on the importance of therapeutic play in supporting children's emotional well-being. Get ready to discover the truth and equip yourself with the tools to help your child process their emotions effectively.

In this episode, you will be able to:

  • Absorb knowledge about the compelling benefits of therapeutic play in fostering children's emotional health.

  • Differentiate between the often-confused arenas of play therapy and therapeutic play.

  • Delve into Laura Sufka's impressive experience and skills in the realm of therapeutic play.

  • Appreciate the subtle yet powerful language of play for children's emotional processing.

  • Recognize the crucial work of Child Life specialists in providing psychological and emotional support to children during their healthcare journeys.

Let's introduce Laura Sufka, certified Child Life Specialist and a staunch believer in the healing power of play. With more than 20 years serving children and families in the healthcare setting, Laura's approach to children's emotional well-being emphasizes the therapeutic power of undirected play. Her extensive experience across various healthcare environments shaped her holistic approach, continuously adapting and evolving to best serve children's needs. She is the proud founder and owner of Children's Coping Connection, her private practice. Here, Laura employs therapeutic play as a modality to help children process challenging life events, extending her expertise and support into the homes of those in need. Her work underlines her unwavering dedication to empowering children in healthcare settings.

The key moments in this episode are:
00:00:00 - Introduction,

00:02:13 - Laura's Background,

00:08:11 - How Families Find Laura,

00:11:23 - Therapeutic Play,

00:14:19 - Goals of Therapeutic Play,

00:15:58 - The Importance of Play and Communication with Children,

00:17:29 - The Benefits of Therapeutic Play,

00:19:34 - The Power of Play in Processing Emotions,

00:20:03 - Getting Started with Therapeutic Play,

00:24:01 - The Importance of Play in Building Trust and Connection,

00:30:57 - Welcome and Introduction,

00:31:03 - Website Resources,

00:31:28 - Call to Action


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