DR HELEN CHILDS
BSc (Hons), DClinPsy., C.Psychol.
Chartered and Clinical Psychologist
Registration and Professional Membership
HCPC Practitioner Psychologist
BPS Chartered Psychologist (Clinical)
I have 18 years of experience in the NHS and 8 years in independent practice working in a range of mental health settings including adult community, physical health and inpatient settings. I have skills and experience in working with the following areas of adult mental health:
Mood difficulties including depression and emotional instability.
Anxiety disorders including phobias, panic disorder, agoraphobia and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Trauma including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and complex trauma relating to early abuse or loss.
Childhood neglect and emotional deprivation
Self-harming behaviours and addictions*
Coping with adjustment to loss or life changes, .e.g. bereavement, divorce, moves, parenthood.
Eating difficulties such as anorexia/bulimia and binge eating disorder, and associated body-image difficulties*
Relationship difficulties including problems in building and sustaining fulfilling relationships.
Physical health difficulties including chronic pain, loss of functioning or deteriorating health.
Loss of direction, feeling unclear about what you want from life, or feeling deeply dissatisfied.
*Please note that I will work with these difficulties depending on current levels of risk and health needs. I will discuss with you whether you might require additional or alternative supports.
I work within a Cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) framework but use an integrative approach, drawing upon acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), schema-focused therapy and and cognitive-analytic therapy (CAT) in formulating psychological difficulties. I often incorporate compassion-focused and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy approaches in my work, and this can be particularly helpful for individuals seeking to develop self-confidence and reduce shame or self-criticism. I believe strongly in identifying and building on your current strengths and resources and will use solution-focused approaches, when appropriate.
More recently, I have trained in Schema therapy, which is a longer-term therapy which is helpful for individuals whom have been struggling with difficulties for some time, and have difficult or repeating patterns within relationships, or problematic coping styles.
What will a session be like?
I offer an initial assessment appointment to meet you and understand your difficulties in depth and help you identify your goals for psychological therapy. I might ask you to complete psychometric measures to aid this process, if appropriate. We will then develop a joint formulation (a psychological understanding of your difficulties based on psychological theory). In a nutshell, I want to discover what brings you to therapy, what might have led you to experiencing difficulties and what might be keeping your problems going, or keeping you feeling stuck.
Based on the psychological assessment and formulation, I will discuss with you which evidence-based approach I feel would be most beneficial, taking into account your goals and hopes for therapy. If you are not sure where to start, or what goals you want to work on, this is also fine - some people seek therapy for this reason - they feel uncertain and are seeking a confidential space to explore their feelings, values and to find meaning.