Child Psychologists Adelaide: our Psychology and Counselling Services

Children and teens experience tough times just like adults do.  They feel sad, worried, stressed, angry, frustrated and overwhelmed.  They don't quite know how to cope with stress, they need help learning to act in positive ways, they struggle with relationships and benefit from support in many other ways.

We specialise in helping children and teens - and the people who support them.  For nearly 15 years, Developing Minds Psychology and Education (previously Innovate Psychology) has cared for, supported and worked with thousands of South Australian children and young people.  We are fully qualified child psychologists and work with children and teens, and then depending on their age, also with their parents.  If appropriate we also work with schools and other supports.  We have two clinics in Adelaide (city and south).

Here are some of the problems that we help children and teens and their families with:

Childhood Anxiety. Adolescent Stress and Adolescent Anxiety.

Anxiety in kids and teens is one of the most common presentations for our child psychologists.  Worry about change, social situations, getting sick, getting anxious, coping with school, being separated from parents (separation anxiety), going to school, thinking about death and injury are all very common for many children and teens.  Our psychologists provide counselling for kids and teens to manage stress, help them feel calmer, stop avoiding situations and act in confident ways.

Teenager Depression. Adolescent Depression. Sadness in Children

Some children and teens go through times when they cry a lot, don't want to do anything, "drop out of life" and question themselves and the world.  Our psychologists work with teens and kids to help them re-engage with life, get more motivated and act in more positive ways.

Study and Organisational/School Skills for Children and Teens

Many kids and teens have trouble organising themselves, remembering things, motivating themselves to do homework, coping with tests and exams and managing the distractions of phones and social media.  Child psychologists at Developing Minds work with students to find strategies to do better at school, become more organised, increase concentration and motivate themselves to study more effectively.

Conflict/Bullying and Social Problems in Kids and teens

Many kids and teens experience mild or severe forms of harassment and bullying at school or in the world of social media and need help to cope.  Other children have difficult friendships and need help managing these.  We are experienced at helping children and young people cope with these difficulties.

Body Image Problems and Eating Disorders in Teens 

Pre teens and teens in particular often struggle with wanting to be thinner, being anxious about food or engaging in unhealthy eating behaviours (like starving themselves, excessive exercise or vomiting).  Our psychologists work with these young people to feel better about their body and act in healthier ways.  

Frustration Management and Challenging Behaviour in kids and teens (ADHD symptoms)

Some children and teens have problems managing frustration with siblings, parents or friends and get exceedingly angry when things don't go right.  Some children have trouble with following instructions or listening to parents, regular lying or hitting/hurting others.  We work with children and teens to help them manage frustration and with parents to help them know how to respond when children and teens act in challenging ways.

Childhood and Adolescent Sleep problems  

Many children and teens have trouble getting to sleep, waking up a lot during the night, feeling sleepy and tired during the day and maintaining good sleep habits.  Our child psychologists help to create better habits and understand what is causing these sleep problems.

Trauma, Grief and Loss 

Some children and teens we see have experienced traumatic events such as divorce/separation of parents, the death of a family member, abuse, sexual assault and other trauma.

Learning and Attention Problems

Some children and teens we see struggle with "keeping up" at school, being able to pay attention, stay focussed, understand concepts and ideas at school.  They often become discouraged and have little confidence in their abilities.   Our psychologists work with parents, students and schools together to help young people increase motivation, attention, concentration. 

Challenges with disabilities  

Many children and teens we work with have been diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD or another disability.  We have worked with hundreds of families dealing with their child's disabilities and know the challenges this involves.  Our Adelaide child psychologists see children under the NDIS scheme.

If you would like us to work with your child or teen to help them feel better, act in more positive ways and get through tough times, click on button below.


But My child or teen doesn't want to attend a counselling session

If you are concerned or troubled by how your child/teen is coping or behaving for some reason, and they are not wanting to attend a session then please keep in mind that in many cases we see parents on their own without the child/teen present.  

We have sessions with parents in which we discuss what is happening at home, and support and advise parents in knowing what to do/how to cope/how to help their child or young person. Sometimes an hour with a psychologist talking through the issues can be enough for parents to know where to start.

We are sometimes able to also talk with parents about how they might bring up the idea of counselling with their young person or how to help them feel more comfortable coming along. 


Who are your adolescent and child psychologists?

There are seventeen psychologists who work at Developing Minds Psychology and Education.   All psychologists have a Clinical Masters degree (and in some cases a PhD) in psychology, have a minimum of 8 and an average of 12 years experience, and we all work with children and teens (and parents) exclusively (ie we do not see adults, other than in the context of parenting support).  This means all of our professional development, systems and processes is done specifically to support children, teens and families.  Our team environment also means we can access resources, get peer supervision and minimise risks as we work together as a team.  Information about each of our psychologists is found here: Our Team


What will happen at the counselling session?

 our CHild psychology clinics in adelaide

We have casual and relaxed rooms which are designed to make children and teens feel comfortable, the pictures on this page are of our rooms and waiting areas in Adelaide.  We have two clinics - at Aberfoyle Park and Wayville.

Depending on the age of the client, we will talk with them first (sometimes with a parent or carer, and sometimes alone).  We will talk to the clients about what they are hoping for from the sessions, ask about their ideas about their problems. We will ask lots of questions, take notes and usually ask clients to think about something or do something before the next session.

Again, depending on the age of the client, we will bring parents or carers in at the end to talk about their feelings about what is happening and to give an idea about how we go forward.   We will need to get permission from the young person to do this, but we are involve family/carers wherever possible.  When we are working with children, we will often want to see the parents on their own and work with them.


How long do counselling appointments take?

The session last for about 50 minutes (not the full hour). The last ten minute of the hour we spend time reviewing our notes/organising payment and further sessions.  If possible, please arrive ten minutes early for your first appointment in order to fill in a brief form. We then ask people to arrive a few minutes early for each appointment after that. We run appointments strictly to time wherever possible. 


When are appointments offered? Our After school appointments

 child/teenage counselling rooms in adelaide

Our psychologists offer appointments at different times during the week.  We understand it is not always possible to get time off work or study to come to appointments and therefore all of our psychologists offer one after hours session (3 appointments) each week.  Keep in mind that these are very popular and so normally you will need to book ahead for these appointments so we suggest you try to have your first session or two during the day, and then book a few after school sessions after that. 


Where are the clinics?

 our counselling and therapy rooms in adelaide

There are two locations for counselling.

Suite 3/16 Bartley Crescent, Wayville. 

Shop 14, The Hub Shopping Centre, Aberfoyle Park.  

Our rooms are designed for children and young people, are not used for any other purpose and are set up to help our clients feel comfortable, have fun and enjoy working with us.  All of our resources are available in our rooms, and our rooms are not used by any other professionals.

Our clinics are equipped with resources, activities, games and books for teens and children.


How much does it cost to see a psychologist at Developing Minds?

From the 1st May 2018 the full charge for our 50 minute sessions is $215.50 per session, or $166.50 for the concession rate.  Clients are eligible to access “concession” rates/concession services only when the adult responsible for the account (usually a parent/guardian) has EITHER a) a current Pension Concession Card or b) Health Care Card in their name (not their child’s name). 

If you have a Mental Health Care Plan (a referral from your GP), Medicare will currently pay $124.50, leaving a gap of $91 or $42 (if you are eligable for a concession rate).  We accept cheque, cash or VISA/ Mastercard/ EFTPOS payments.

For more details about Medicare and private health rebates read on below.


Medicare Rebates for Psychology Fees (Mental Health Care Plans)

If you are referred by your GP (or psychiatrist or paediatrician) then Medicare will cover $124.50 of our fee, meaning there will be a gap of $91 for the client to pay (unless the client is eligable for a concession rate, in which case the gap is $42).  This gap cannot be claimed on private health cover.  This rebate is available for 10 sessions within a calendar year.

For Medicare to pay for these 10 sessions, your GP will have to determine whether you are eligible and write what is called a "Mental Health Care Plan" which is dated before your first session.  If your teenager doesn't regularly see a GP, and is unsure about where to go - you might like to look at this site which has a list of "youth friendly" GPs:  http://www.youthfriendlydoctor.org.au/register.php

We require clients to pay "upfront".  However we have a "Mediclear" system whereby we will immediately reimburse the Medicare rebate into the clients savings or cheque account on the spot.  Alternatively, if the client prefers they can take their invoice to Medicare directly and be reimbursed in cash.

All of our psychologists are all registered as Medicare-approved Clinical Psychologists and offer the maximum gap for psychologists via Medicare.  Please call our office if you have more questions about the Medicare process.


NDIS (National Disability Insurance Scheme)

We are fully registered providers under NDIS and many of our psychologists have worked with hundreds of families over the last 20 years who have children or teens diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and other disabilities.  If you are self-funded under the scheme, you are able to simply make an appointment and pay privately using your funding.  Unfortunately due to our client load at the moment we are no longer taking any new clients who are NDIS agency or plan managed.

Please note our advice from NDIS at this point is that you can not use Better Access funding and NDIS funding at the same time.


Other Federal Funding

We have a limited amount of funding (as well as Medicare) for families on a health care card who live in the central and southern areas of Adelaide, which allows children to be seen without a gap.  Please speak to us about this.  


Private Health Cover

If you do not wish to use Medicare rebates, or other funding, you might like to use private health cover to help cover the cost of the consultations.  If applicable, please contact your own health fund for information about their rebates. As a rough guide, many health funds offer between $50-110 back from a psychological consultation.


Information about Confidentiality

Information disclosed to a psychologist is confidential. This means the psychologist will not reveal, to any other person, any information about the client, or reveal that the client was seeking psychological assistance, unless they have the permission of the client to do so.

There are a few exceptions to this general rule. First, if failure to disclose information may result in clear danger to the client or to another person, the psychologist may disclose minimal information necessary to avert risk. Second, if the psychologist believes a child or teenager may be or have been subject to physical, sexual or emotional abuse or neglect, psychologists must by law report this to appropriate authorities.  Psychologists and other professionals must also now report unregistered firearms.

When working with an adolescent the same limits of confidentiality apply. In other words, unless the adolescent or another person is at risk, information disclosed by the adolescent will not be revealed to any other party, including parents and guardians, without the express permission of the adolescent. However, in most cases, all reasonable efforts will be made to obtain the agreement of the adolescent to involve and discuss information with parents and/or guardians on an ongoing basis.

Working with Children of Separated Parents:

Many children tho come to see us have parents who live separately. In general, we want to work and communicate with all the key people in a child's life wherever possible. Most of the time this leads to greater benefits and change for a child.

Therefore we have a policy which states that unless a court order specifically states otherwise, we will not withhold information about a child's appointments or treatment (except confidential information irrelevant to a child's treatment) from either parent if the treating clinician believes it is in the best interests of the child for the parent/s to be provided with this information.

For further information please go to:

https://developingminds.net.au/workingwithchildrenseparatedparents

Email Policy

At Developing Minds we are more than happy to receive emails from you, in fact this is usually the best way to contact our clinicians! There are just a few points to remember: 

  • Usually we can't email you back due to time constraints (we will read it before your session and discuss it further in session.)
  • As we can't respond quickly please don't email about safety issues, go to your GP or local hospital
  • If you email us, let us know who knows what or any confidentiality issues so we know if your child/teen knows about the information you told us. 

Making Appointments

To make an appointment with one of our psychologists, please phone our office on Monday to Friday during business hours and our office manager will be able to make an appointment for you. Occasionally our call answering service may have to take a message and your call will be returned the next day.  You can also email the office with your phone number and our office managers will call you back.  The email address is admin@developingminds.net.au


Waiting Periods and Appointment Times

Unfortunately our waiting times do vary considerably.  Occasionally we have an appointment available quickly due to a cancellation or an unusually free week, but generally there is at least a two week wait for an initial appointment, and sometimes up to twelve weeks.  

Important:  Once you have had your first appointment, you will be seen them weekly or fortnightly for as long as needed, so it is only the initial wait that may take additional time.  

We do have a waiting list which we can use to take people's names in case we have cancellations and can fit you in sooner.

If you feel as though you might hurt yourself or someone else (or are concerned that someone else might do that) then you should go to your local hospital emergency room for help.  You can also call us and we can provide some organisations which provide crisis services.

A note about after school hours appointments.  Many families prefer after school hours appointments due to not wanting children or teens to miss school or due to their own work commitments.  Unlike many services, all of our clinicians offer a minimum of three after school hours appointments each week.  Unfortunately they are usually the most popular and booked up very quickly.  Therefore, given the need to have regular therapy and our inability to guarantee after school hours appointments every time, if you cannot attend any appointments within school time at all, then our service might not suit you.

 (If it is after business hours and you would like info about appointments, send a message to us with your phone number and we will call you first thing on the next business day)

Please note, because we see children and teens specifically, we refer adults who are wanting personal therapy or relationship counselling to other psychologists.  For the names of other psychologists we refer to, please click here.