Special need Children especially those with physical or cognitive challenges often experience a number of social problems such as anxiety, relationship problems, depression, attention deficit and many more. They generally face real and sometimes self-imposed difficulty in building relationships. They find it very difficult to gel in with others, they often feel felt out of the crowd.
The most common social issues with differently abled children are depression, sadness, lack of confidence, frustration, unhappiness, embarrassment etc. They often find it difficult to fit in or feel accepted. It Interrupts in their social, emotional and physical development. Also these emotional, attention and behavioral challenges hamper a child’s ability to learn, grow, develop and progress. It is necessary for them to have positive interactions in the family, at school, with friends or on job as it affects their mental health and well-being.
Children with cerebral palsy face innumerable physical, psychological and developmental issues, depending on the severity of the disorder. Thus they tend to have various apprehensions about the society. Social problems with children suffering from cerebral palsy usually comes from their difficulty communicating, making it more difficult for social interaction. Poor coordination of the tongue and mouth muscles affects their speech ability. These problems need to be dealt with, in a very careful and timely manner as they might result in development of social phobia or child’s gradual withdraw from the social set up.
Social therapy is a therapy developed to help individuals experiencing psychological issues or anxiety to regulate their emotions, develop friendship & positive interactions. It is a group based therapy which helps decrease the sense of loneliness, isolation and stress experienced by the child. The concept of social therapy is existing since late 1970’s. Social therapy involves activities both at individual & group level which lead to teaching, learning, reacting, self-discovery, active as well as passive communication, development of confidence & self-esteem. Social therapy strengths the affection & bonding by encouraging families and friends to provide the children with special needs the opportunities for personal interaction in group settings.
It is an empowering technique as it replaces anxiety, emotional pain & shyness with self-development by teaching new ways of interacting, perceiving, learning & thinking. Thus helps in developing personality; increasing independence, creativity, productivity; enhancing social skills & relationships of a differently abled child.