Troubled Children

What works for troubled children


Information for social workers and other professionals about how to respond effectively to children and young people with emotional and behavioural problems and their families.

In this site you will be able to find suggested evidence-based strategies and interventions that can be used to tackle specific problems you encounter in your work with families.

You can find your way to information by (1) reviewing the contents in the index below and clicking on a link and (2) selecting the age of the child you are concerned about.
  1. Disruptive, antisocial or aggressive behaviour
    Sleep problems; eating problems; problems with wetting; problems with soiling; problems in socialising; difficult behaviour at home; disruptive behaviour in school.
  2. Emotional and related symptoms
    Encouraging positive parent/child interaction; behavioural and cognitive-behavioural methods of intervention; risk and protective factors; post-natal depression; maternal depression.
  3. Family life and relationship problems
    Separation and divorce; step families; bereavement; assessment tools; family support - what works; post natal depression; work with fathers; domestic violence.
  4. Nonorganic somatic symptoms
    Physical symptoms arising from unhappiness/anxiety/stress; sleep problems; eating problems; problems with wetting/soiling; reducing stress and anxiety in children and young people; school phobia; selective mutism; separation anxiety; anorexia; bulimia.
  5. Overactivity, attention or concentration problems
    Hyperactive; ADHD; hyperkinetic; impulsive behaviour; overactive behaviour; inability to concentrate; learning styles of hyperactive children.
  6. Peer relationship problems
    Peer problems; bullying including racist/homophobic bullying; school antibullying programmes.
  7. Physical illness or disability problems
    Models of disability; causes of disability; assessment of the problem and first steps; key legislation; best practice in giving diagnosis; Portage; education of sick children; inclusion and mainstreaming; help parents and children say they want; death of a child.
  8. Poor school attendance
    Causes of school refusal including separation anxiety; school phobia; truancy; condoned absence; exclusion; validated programmes for intervention.
  9. Scholastic or language skills problems
    Index of specific difficulties including ADHD, Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Down’s syndrome, Dyslexia, Tourette syndrome and more; helping parents; obtaining service provision including assessment of special education needs; statementing; identifying delayed language.
  10. Self-care and independence problems
    Teaching self-care skills; starting and moving school; children left home alone; peers and independence; pocket money and allowances; negotiating with adolescents; care leavers; sex and sexuality; teenage parents.
  11. Self-harm/Nonaccidental self-injury
    Reasons for self harm; head banging; holding breath; overdosing; hitting/cutting/burning oneself; picking skin; pulling hair; the suicidal child; stress management methods for parents.
  12. Substance misuse
    Drug/alcohol dependent parents; drug/alcohol misuse in pregnancy; “Normal” experimentation; Class A drugs; detoxification; treatment programmes.


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