Play Therapy: The healing power of play

Does your child find it hard to interact with their peers in play? Perhaps they are having bigger emotional outbursts? If so, play therapy could help.


Play Therapy: The healing power of play

When children experience challenges, they tend to display them as a means of changing their behaviour. Every behaviour stems from something.

“Play is considered to be especially important for the healthy development of children who have experienced stressful events or past trauma,” explains Bridget McKeith, a play therapist at Chatter-Boxes, a leading Sunshine Coast therapy centre.

Play therapy at Chatter-Boxes helps children between the ages of 3 and 12 manage their worries, stress, and concerns. Because children are not able to express their thoughts, feelings, and emotions verbally, play therapy utilises a child’s natural urge to explore, create, and discover through play.

“Play therapy is a wonderful resource for families to tap into, providing the support and resources to successfully guide the exploration and understanding of emotions and behaviour in the early years,” says Jo Emery, Co-Director at Chatter-Boxes Therapy Centre.


What happens in play therapy?

The room is equipped with a selection of specifically chosen toys that are encourage the child to express their feelings and develop healthy behaviours.
“The child’s interactions with these toys serve as the child’s symbolic words. This allows me to learn about specific thoughts and emotions that a child may find difficult or impossible to express verbally,” Bridget says.

Quality play therapy provides a holistic approach, supporting the child and family as a whole.

“At Chatter-Boxes, we know the importance of connection and enjoyment, and we understand the pressure and overwhelming feelings that come with being a parent,” says Bridget. “Our multidisciplinary team of occupational therapists, speech pathologists, psychologists, counsellors, allied health assistants and play therapists provide support in our fun and inviting clinic spaces as well as in the community.”

“Our purpose is to educate, advocate and inspire! We look forward to working with you and your family.”


5 fun facts about play:

  1. Play helps lower stress by increasing dopamine and oxytocin throughout the body.
  2. Play increases whole-brain integration through movement, self-expression and the use of self-regulation.
  3. Play assists in creating new brain connections, allowing us to have a broader outlook on life and understand other people’s ideas. Engaging in different roles, narratives, alternate endings and exploring possible limits can help transform ourselves.
  4. Play can help create new pathways within our brain. This allows us to heal from trauma and better our emotions and behaviours.
  5. Creating a new synapse in your brain can take up to 400 repetitions unless you do it in play, which only takes 10-20 repetitions.


Play therapy can help with…

  • Grief and loss
  • Chronic illness – child or parent
  • Posttraumatic stress
  • Obsessions and compulsions
  • ADHD
  • ASD
  • Trauma
  • Mood issues
  • Anxiety
  • Bullying
  • Depression
  • Developmental issues
  • Family separation



Servicing Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and beyond, Kids on the Coast is an online guide for parents with kids events, attractions & things to do with kids, schools and education, school holiday guides, health & wellbeing for families, parenting and lifestyle news located on Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast & Brisbane, QLD.



By Angela Sutherland
After spending many years hustling stories on busy editorial desks around the world, Angela is now mum of two little ones and owner/editor at Kids on the Coast / Kids in the City. She is an atrocious cook and loves cutting shapes to 90s dance music. Angela is the editor of Kids on the Coast - a free family magazine whats on guide for Kids: things to do, school holiday fun and free activities for kids... Fun attractions, family food & travel, kids health & wellbeing, kids parties venues, parenting, pregnancy & babies, guide for parents. Servicing Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and beyond, Kids on the Coast is an online guide for parents with kids things to do with kids, schools and education and lifestyle news located on Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast & Brisbane, QLD.

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