Date of Paper


Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)


Social Work

First Advisor

Mary Nienow


Social Work


The number of children diagnosed and struggling with a mental health disorder within the United States is increasing quickly (Lin and Bratton, 2015). With this population of children becoming bigger each day the need for effective prevention and intervention strategies to help children learn how to emotionally regulate continues to grow in importance. The following study asks the question: what do clinicians find to be the most effective interventions in helping children ages three to twelve learn how to regulate their emotions? Semi-structured interviews were conducted with mental health professionals within the Twin Cities metropolitan area to answer this question. The data collected was analyzed using the Grounded Theory model in order to identify major reoccurring themes within the interview data. The researcher discovered misdiagnosis of ADHD and other disorders whose symptoms mimic each other is a great concern of the clinicians studied. These clinicians believe the most common underlying issue with emotion dysregulation is childhood trauma. Clinicians also believe parent/caregiver/family involvement is crucial to the effectiveness of the skills and interventions being taught in therapy sessions. The types of therapy and/or skills being used by the therapist were deemed essential to therapeutic success, and the ways in which the clinicians learned to implement the skills and interventions they used in sessions were critical for positive child outcomes.

Included in

Social Work Commons