Child Psychologist in Adelaide

Child Psychologist in Adelaide

Therapy for Children with A Child Psychologist

A child psychologist talks with parents and assesses a child’s behavioural and mental health problems. They will assess for and treat, behaviour problems, parenting strategies, children’s emotional problems such as anxiety, sleep disturbance and a wide range of clinical disorders. Parents are – especially with young children – involved in the treatment program. For young children, the parenting component is very important to therapy outcomes. The foundation of all programs is based on:

  •  Assessing the nature of the child’s mental health, emotional or behavioural problems
  •  Using approaches with the child that communicate at the child’s age level
  •  Showing the child how to change their thoughts and behaviour through play and talking
  •  Using approaches with the child that help them to understand and change
  •  Teaching parents a new approach to understanding and working with their child

Our Child Psychologists in Adelaide

NDIS Psychologists

Shannai Sloan is able to see self and plan managed children with an NDIS plan.

Joanne Spadavecchia

Joanne does not see NDIS clients, but does see children as a private client or under Medicare. Both Joanne and Shannai prefer that the parent book a first session without the child. Often it is advantageous for the psychologist to hear all about the issue from the parents perspective, and this is best done without the child being present.

Areas of Work – Younger Children

Issues that our child psychologists commonly work with in younger children include:

  • Behavioural problems such as disobedience and oppositional behaviour (defiance)
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Autistic Spectrum Disorder
  • Bullying
  • Anxiety, worrying
  • Fear and avoidance of certain situations
  • School refusal
  • Depression
  • Bed wetting
  • Phobias – anxious avoidance of places, people, or activities
  • Separation anxiety
  • Excessive temper tantrums or excessive crying
  • Insecurity and over-dependence on parent(s)
  • Tummy ache, enuresis, inability to relax
  • Ritualised behaviours


The following are more often found in the older child:

  • Self-harm
  • Eating disorders
  • School refusal
  • Examination anxiety
  • Social anxiety and avoidance
  • Depression
  • Perfectionism, anxiety and avoidance


Joanne, Helen White and John Gwiazdwinski will see children over 12.

John Gwiazdzinski

John was a school psychologist for 25 years. He is a gentle person who listens and makes changes that will be accepted by the child. He will see adolescents, for mental health issues and in the school context.

  • Bullying
  • School avoidance
  • Learning difficulties

Helen White

Helen is aware of the dual importance of teenagers having some space to talk by themselves and take charge of their own recovery, while still needing the support and involvement of their parents. Depending on what is needed, therapy with adolescents may be done individually or may also include parents in the session (or a blend of both). When an adolescent is struggling this can also have a big impact on the rest of the family, so as well as helping your teenager work out how to better manage their feelings, Helen can also take a whole family approach to finding solutions. This can include:

  • Improving your connection with your teenager
  • Helping parents work together more effectively to support their children
  • Working with the whole family together
  • Fostering trust, communication and respect within the family
  • Helping parents to better understand what is happening for their teenager