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Child Psychiatry

Welcome to my Child Psychiatry page, where I discuss my approach to child psychiatry, the specialized training that informs my practice, and my commitment to holistic care for children and families. I believe in personalized, collaborative, and family-centered approaches to help children thrive.

(Click here for information specific to adolescent psychiatry.)

Approach to Child Psychiatry

At Centered Psychiatry(TM), I am able to take a unique approach to child psychiatry. I understand that every child is different and that effective treatment requires a tailored strategy. I blend traditional psychiatric expertise with a whole-person perspective, focusing on the emotional, social, and physical well-being of each child.

  1. Holistic Whole-Person Care: With a holistic approach, I am considering not just the psychiatric aspect but the entire well-being of the child, including their physical health, emotional state, family dynamics, and social environment. Traditional methods might focus more narrowly on symptom management.

  2. Personalized Treatment: I prioritize personalized care tailored to each child's unique needs and circumstances. This individualized approach is distinctive, as traditional methods can sometimes rely on standardized treatment plans.

  3. Collaborative and Family-Centered Care: I am committed to involving families and other professionals in the child's treatment process as needed. Many traditional approaches may not emphasize collaboration to the same extent and may lean towards a more isolated practice.

  4. Balanced Medication Management: While I offer medication management when necessary, my approach differs from traditional methods that may rush into medication decisions. I take the time to thoroughly assess and explore alternative interventions while considering medications.

  5. High Quality Care and Adequate Time: My dedication to securing ample time for patient visits, preparation, reflection, and collaboration is a significant differentiator. Many child psychiatrists in traditional settings face time constraints, out of their control, that can limit the depth of care.

  6. Broad Range of Therapeutic Approaches: I employ an eclectic therapeutic approach, utilizing a wide array of techniques based on the child's needs. Traditional methods might rely heavily on specific therapeutic modalities.

  7. Patient-Centered Communication: My focus on patient-centered communication ensures that children and their families actively participate in treatment decisions, fostering a sense of ownership and empowerment.

Child-Specific Training

As a child and adolescent psychiatrist, I have completed extensive training in child psychiatry. My training involves four years of medical school, followed by a general psychiatry residency, and specialized child and adolescent psychiatry training. Training includes all areas of medicine but with a special focus on neurology and psychiatry. This comprehensive training equips me with a deep understanding of the developmental, medical, and emotional needs of young individuals and their families. I take a comprehensive approach, considering various factors like biology, psychology, development, and social influences. I stay updated through ongoing education.​​

For more information on the training of a child and adolescent psychiatrist, click here

For more information on my specific training, click here.

Child psychiatry as whole person personalized collaborative care | Kathy Russeth, MD

Holistic, Personalized, and Collaborative
Care of Children

Whole-Person Perspective

My practice emphasizes a whole-person perspective in child psychiatry. I consider every aspect of a child's life, from their genetic predispositions to their family dynamics and cultural background. By looking at the big picture, we can create comprehensive and individualized treatment plans that promote a child's overall well-being. Learn more here. 

Child psychiatry with a whole person perspective | Kathy Russeth, MD
Personalized Care

At Centered Psychiatry™, I'm passionate about tailoring my treatments to meet the unique needs of each child and their family. Whether it's through therapy, medication, or other interventions, my goal is to provide individualized care that helps children thrive. Learn more here.

Child psychiatry that is personalized | Kathy Russeth, MD
Collaborative Care

I believe in collaboration. I involve families and other professionals in every child's treatment process when appropriate. This may include family therapy, working with schools, coordinating with pediatricians, and consulting with various specialists to create a cohesive support system for the child. This has to be done conscientiously keeping in mind the child's right to confidentiality. Learn more here.

Collaborative care in child psychiatry | Kathy Russeth, MD

Have questions about Healthy Family Functioning? 

Specific Treatment Modalities
applied to the care of children

  1. Biological Psychiatry: This approach emphasizes the role of biology and genetics in mental health. It often leans on medications as the primary treatment method, addressing symptoms through medication management.

  2. Psychodynamic Psychiatry: Rooted in Freudian theory, this approach explores unconscious processes and early childhood experiences. It focuses on uncovering underlying conflicts and emotions.

  3. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT): CBT is a widely accepted evidence-based approach. It concentrates on identifying and changing negative thought patterns and behaviors in children.

  4. Family Systems Therapy: This approach looks at the family as a dynamic system, with each member affecting the others. It's especially beneficial when family dynamics contribute to the child's issues.

  5. Holistic or Integrative Psychiatry: Integrative child psychiatry considers the whole person, including physical, emotional, social, and environmental factors. It often combines traditional and alternative treatments, such as therapy, nutrition, and mindfulness.

  6. Positive Psychology: This approach emphasizes strengths, resilience, and personal growth. It focuses on promoting well-being and positive emotions in children.

  7. Mindfulness and Mind-Body Approaches: Incorporating mindfulness and relaxation techniques can help children manage stress, anxiety, and emotional regulation.

  8. Nutritional Psychiatry: Recognizes the impact of diet on mental health. It explores how nutrition and supplements can support emotional well-being.

  9. Narrative Therapy: This approach uses storytelling to help children reframe their experiences and gain a sense of control over their narratives.

  10. Art and Play Therapy: Art and play therapy allow children to express themselves non-verbally, making it useful for those who may struggle to communicate their feelings.

  11. Environmental Psychiatry: Examines the impact of a child's environment, including their living situation, school, and community, on their mental health.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
in Child Psychiatry

Frequently asked questions about Child Psychiatry | Kathy Russeth, MD

Here are the common questions and answers regarding child psychiatry:


Are psychiatric disorders in children a result of poor parenting?

While parenting style can influence a child's mental health, many disorders are related to biological and environmental factors beyond a parent’s control.


Can young children really experience depression or anxiety?

Answer: Yes, children of any age can experience mental health issues, including depression and anxiety.


Do medications always solve the problem in child psychiatry?

Medications can be an important part of treatment but often work best in conjunction with therapy and other interventions.


Is Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) caused by too much sugar or screen time?

No, ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder with a strong genetic component, not directly caused by diet or lifestyle.


Do children grow out of mental health problems?

While some children may naturally overcome certain issues, many require treatment to manage symptoms and improve functioning.

Does talking about traumatic experiences or mental health make things worse for children?

No, therapeutic interventions are designed to help children process and manage their experiences in a healthy way.

Is therapy for children just playtime?

Play therapy is a structured approach that helps children express and process their emotions.

Does good behavior in children mean they don't have a psychiatric disorder?

Not necessarily; some children internalize their struggles and may appear well-behaved despite internal distress.

Are psychiatric labels harmful or stigmatizing for children?

No, a diagnosis is a tool for understanding and treating the child's difficulties, not a label that defines them.

Do child psychiatrists only manage medication?

No, child psychiatrists are trained to provide a range of treatments, including psychotherapy, and to coordinate care within a multi-disciplinary team.

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