Child & Youth Anxiety Clinic

Michael Garron Hospital's (MGH) anxiety clinic specializes in evidence-based individual and group psychotherapy for children and youth up until their 18th birthday who have an anxiety disorder. Additional services include medication follow-up and computer-based interventions.

Anxiety disorders are among the most common and most treatable mental health conditions impacting children and teens. 

Founded in 2009, the child and adolescent anxiety clinic is one of only a few government-funded services of its kind in Toronto. We provide treatment for separation anxiety, social anxiety, generalized anxiety, panic attacks, specific phobias, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and other related conditions. 

Although our primary goal is clinical care, we also conduct research into anxiety and are active in providing training for psychiatry residents and other students. Our staff are published in academic journals and have received grants and awards in this field.

Our interdisciplinary team includes child psychiatrists, psychiatry residents and trainees from a variety of other disciplines.

The Anxiety Clinic can be accessed through referral by a primary care physician.

SERVICES

Our clinic is small and spots are limited. Please check back periodically for updates when the clinic is closed to new referrals. You are welcomed to contact Help Ahead (previously Mental Health Toronto (MHTO) with any questions related to psychiatric referrals to MGH. Please note our list of private therapists and resources as well. 

In an effort to serve additional clients, we have opened a private clinic, which provides the same services as our public clinic and, in addition, harnesses technology to provide our patient population a choice of treatments and costs. Please email wynette.solis@tehn.ca for further details.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a form of psychotherapy that integrates theories of cognition and learning with treatment techniques derived from cognitive therapy and behavior therapy. CBT assumes that thoughts, feelings and behaviour are interconnected. Treatment focuses on thoughts; identifying them, understanding them better and, if interested – changing them. This, in turn, affects the way we feel and what we do.  

CBT is an evidence-based therapy and is considered the first line treatment for anxiety disorders, especially in children and adolescents. CBT can be tailored for specific disorders, for example, Exposure and Response Prevention (ER/P) for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Prolonged Exposure (PE) or Trauma Focused CBT (TF-CBT) for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). CBT can be practiced in different ways, for example: group therapy (in which a therapist leads a group of clients through a therapeutic process to overcome a common difficulty) or individual therapy (in which a therapist meets with one client).

THE FOLLOWING SERVICES ARE AVAILABLE AT OUR CLINIC:

Individual CBT tailored for all anxiety disorders including therapy for preschoolers, Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD), Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), OCD and PTSD. 

Group CBT:

  • Teen Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) (for ages 13-18). 
  • Cool kids for ages 7-9 (addresses a variety of anxiety disorders). 
  • Cool kids for ages 9-12 (addresses a variety of anxiety disorders). 
  • Teen Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) (for ages 13-18). 
  • Parenting Group for Anxious Preschoolers (P-GAP) for ages 0-6. This group helps parents address an anxious temperament in their young children. 
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) for ages 9-18 (specific age range may vary in accordance with the clients referred at the time). 
  • Trichotillomania for ages 9-18 (specific age range may vary in accordance with the clients referred at the time). 

Consultation

A one-time meeting with a psychiatrist for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment recommendations. 

 

Medication Follow Up

Recurring visits with a psychiatrist/nurse for the sole purpose of medication adjustment and follow up. These visits are shorter and less frequent than CBT.

 

ANGST-E Research Study

ANGST-E is our Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) app for the treatment of anxiety in teens. The app is always with you, on your phone, and will guide you through 12 stages of therapy. Each participant will have access to a live therapist through the app as well. The app is designed for teens aged 13-18 who feel anxiety is the primary problem in their lives. Please see the brochure below for additional information and feel free to contact us if you have further questions. For participation in the study, please fax a doctor's referral and indicate clearly " for ANGST-E study." 

ANGST-E Brochure

 

Improv Group 

Improv is about getting out of your head, and into your body. Our clinic is collaborating with www.improv4health.com to provide this service which focuses on bringing out your authentic and creative self through improv games and short scenes. Within the world of pretend play, an environment is created where you can safely express yourself. The participant will explore different characters, environments, friendships and have fun! Improv builds a sense of confidence as well as developing the ability to think on the spot. It is an important skill on the path of overcoming social anxiety, and anxiety in general.

Resources

Physicians:

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