Psychotherapy Services

At Tarboro Pediatric Psychology, we work with a wide variety of childhood and adolescent conditions in psychotherapy. These include depression, anxiety, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), eating disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), disruptive behavior problems, sensory sensitivities, parental separation and divorce, and autism spectrum disorders. As pediatric psychologists, we tailor treatment approaches to the specific problems of each child or adolescent. Parents are included in treatment decisions and are an integral part of the treatment process.

Parent - Child Interaction Therapy

Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) is an evidence-based treatment for young children with disruptive behavior disorders, including oppositional and defiant disorder and AD/HD. PCIT helps to improve the quality of the parent-child relationship, change parent-child interaction patterns, and increase child compliance. In PCIT, parents are taught specific skills to establish a warm relationship with their child while increasing their child’s positive behaviors and decreasing negative behaviors. This treatment provides parents with play therapy skills that strengthen the parent-child relationship while also teaching parents specific behavior management techniques to decrease disruptive and non-compliant behaviors.

Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) is a short-term and time-limited treatment designed to treat symptoms resulting from physical or sexual abuse or exposure to domestic violence. Individual sessions for the child and the parents/caregivers are intended to: provide education about the impact of trauma, help children identify and cope with a range of emotions, develop stress management skills, teach children and parents how to recognize the connections between thoughts, feelings and behaviors, encourage children to share their traumatic experiences, help children and parents talk with each other about the traumatic experience, modify inaccurate or unhelpful trauma-related thoughts, and help parents develop skills for optimizing their children's emotional and behavioral adjustment. TF-CBT has by shown through research to improve the outcomes of children who have experienced trauma.

Evaluating for AD/HD and Comorbid Psychological Conditions

We utilize an empirically based, multi-method assessment model for evaluating AD/HD in children and adolescents.  Because many children and adolescents with AD/HD exhibit comorbid conditions, such as oppositional behavior, anxiety, depression, and learning disabilities, we evaluate the whole child and how he or she functions in a wide range of settings.  Assessments for AD/HD include comprehensive clinical interviewing, intelligence and achievement testing if warranted, behavioral ratings completed by the child, parents, and teachers, and vigilance testing to assess attention directly.  Feedback is provided to parents and treatment options are discussed.

Learning Disability Evaluations

Many children have trouble succeeding in the academic environment and this can be very confusing for parents and teachers.  Often, there are cognitive discrepancies, processing speed deficits, specific learning disabilities in the areas of reading, math, or written language, verbal/language deficits, or other subtle learning issues that are contributing to academic problems.  At Tarboro Pediatric Psychology, children and adolescents can receive comprehensive evaluations that include assessment of intelligence and achievement level, visual-motor abilities, and other psychological factors that often exacerbate learning problems.  Results are reviewed with parents and recommendations are provided for parents and teachers.  Comprehensive test reports are provided to parents.

Autism Spectrum Evaluations

Autism Spectrum Disorders include Autism, Asperger’s Disorder, and Pervasive Developmental Disorder. These conditions include deficits in the areas of verbal and nonverbal communication, social functioning, and repetitive and stereotyped behaviors.  Children and adolescents with these conditions can experience significant difficulties in the school environments, including social problems, learning difficulties, and behavioral problems that can be difficult to manage.  At Tarboro Pediatric Psychology, we offer comprehensive assessments for Autism Spectrum Disorders that include clinical interviewing, behavioral and emotional assessment, cognitive testing, and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) which is considered the “gold standard” in evaluating Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Early Childhood Evaluations

Many young children have trouble reaching developmental milestones within normal time limits.  Research shows that early intervention with such children can significantly improve their outcomes.  At Tarboro Pediatric Psychology, we offer developmental evaluations beginning as young as 24 months to gain a better understanding of a child’s development in the areas of expressive and receptive language, fine and gross motor skills, cognitive ability, and behavioral and emotional functioning.  Results are reviewed with parents and recommendations are made for treatment.

Evaluations for Early Admission to Kindergarten

Children must currently be 5 years old by August 31st in order to be eligible for enrollment in kindergarten in the public school system.  Children who do not meet this cut off can still enroll in kindergarten if they score at the 98th percentile or above on measures of intelligence and achievement.  Although these criteria are difficult to reach, some children are able to perform at this level and therefore, would be eligible for early admission.  We would be happy to speak with any parent who feels that their child may be a candidate for this type of assessment. 

Contract Psychological Testing

We offer psychological testing to school systems who have children in the Exceptional Children's Program who need psychological testing in order to implement Individualized Education Plans, provide appropriate academic accomodations, and better understand learning strengths and weaknesses.  We are available to contract with schools to provide high quality assessments, comprehensive recommendations, and consultation to assist in the development of realistic academic goals that lead to success in the school environment. 

Child/Family Evaluation Program

Our psychologists are rostered with the North Carolina Child/Family Evaluation Program to provide evaluations that aid in the assessment of child abuse and/or neglect. Children assessed through the CFE Program must be referred by a county child welfare agency and must be the subject of a current CPS assessment of alleged abuse or neglect. CFE's provide county welfare agencies with additional diagnostic information and aims to assist county welfare agencies and the courts in determining the most appropriate case decision. CFE's also provide county welfare agencies with information that can be used to determine the most appropriate services for the child or children.  

Evaluations for Families Involved in a Custody Dispute

Today, approximately 40% of children have parents who are divorced.  Although many families are able to manage the increased demands and logistical issues that are involved in transitioning children from one household to another, other families have difficulty working through these issues and ultimately require assistance from the legal system.  Attorneys frequently have questions about family structure, parenting styles, conditions that can affect parenting effectiveness, and child functioning.  At Tarboro Pediatric Psychology, family evaluations can be conducted to provide useful information to attorneys and the court to guide decisions about how best to handle issues related to visitation and custody.  Our family evaluations provide an alternative to comprehensive custody evaluations that are extremely time consuming and very expensive for families.  Although our family evaluations are not designed to provide specific visitation and custody recommendations, results of the assessment can be used to guide decisions in the legal process.  We are committed to providing the highest quality assessment measures that are administered in the context of a caring environment. 

Psychological Testing for Legal Purposes

There are many legal situations that can require an assessment of a child or adolescent's psychological functioning.  At Tarboro Pediatric Psychology, our psychologists are experienced in administering tests of developmental functioning, cognitive functioning, personality structure, and psychopathology.

Therapeutic Supervised Visitation

Therapeutic supervised visitation is very similar to a traditional monitored visit between the non-custodial parent and child, except that a licensed clinician is involved to supervise and guide the visit.  The psychologist interacts with family members prior to, during, and following each visit to provide recommendations for ensuring the development of a healthy relationship between the non-custodial parent and child.  Often, court processes have interrupted the parent-child relationship and therapeutic supervised visitation can be extremely beneficial in repairing the relationship, re-establishing trust, and developing effective parenting strategies in a safe environment.

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Assessments and Evaluations

Forensic Services