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Working with Child and Adolescent Mental Health: The Central Role Of Language And Communication

RRP - $67.26   Our Price - $63.59  Softcover
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Susan McCool

  • Working with Child and Adolescent Mental Health

236 pages
ISBN: 9781032192833

In children, mental health challenges and communication differences typically combine in complex and inter-related ways. Remarkably, this crucial point is all too often forgotten, and communication is overlooked. Services are frequently fragmented, leading professionals to look at children through distinct lenses of either mental health or communication, meaning insights can be incomplete and important perspectives unshared.

Working with Child and Adolescent Mental Health makes the compelling case that communication is central and should be a primary consideration whenever we think about children’s mental health. With a practical focus, and an easy- to-read format, it suggests how this can be achieved by identifying how practitioners and services can work more cohesively to understand and optimise children’s communication capacities.

This book includes:

  • Practical advice, grounded in current research, and presented in an easy-to-read, digestible style
  • Guidance to help practitioners competently and compassionately identify and respond to the needs of children and young people with complex combined communication and mental health needs
  • Real-life case studies from a wide range of settings, unpicked to clearly illustrate topics discussed in the book and offer encouragement and inspiration to practitioners
  • Checklists and questionnaires to help practitioners in daily practice
  • Recommendations for, and links to, useful additional resources
  • Tools to support reflection and enhancement for individual practitioners and services

Essential reading for speech and language therapists, psychologists, mental health practitioners, educators, social workers, and anyone else concerned with children’s wellbeing and resilience, this book highlights the transformational impact of placing communication at the heart of all efforts to support children and young people’s mental health.

Table of Contents


List of Tables


Chapter 1: The central role of language and communication

Chapter 2: Ways of thinking about mental health and communication

Chapter 3: Practitioner competencies

Chapter 4: Learning from experience

Chapter 5: Considering social communication in children and young people

Chapter 6: Responding to social communication needs

Chapter 7: Changing contexts and cultures


"Addressing mental health needs in children and young people is one of the most urgent challenges of our time. McCool makes a compelling case for placing social communication at the centre of managing these needs. This book is essential reading for all speech-language pathologists involved in the care of these clients."
- Louise Cummings, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, China

"This is an important book for anyone who wants to support young people’s mental health, offering both theoretical and practical insights. Communication support needs are often overlooked in young people with mental health issues although they can have devastating implications, not least on the efficacy of any intervention offered."
- Melanie Cross, Speech and language therapist, author, and video interaction guidance supervisor

"The format of this book is beautifully balanced: it is authoritative, yet concisely and clearly written; it is highly practical yet packed with useful information. It will go a long way towards closing the gap between speech and language therapy and the rest of the child mental health world."
- Helen Minnis, Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Glasgow, Scotland