This week is the Australian Psychological Society’s 2016 Psychology Week. It’s an opportunity to increase public awareness of how psychology can help people and communities lead healthier, happier and more meaningful lives.

We thought that this week would be a good opportunity to debunk some myths about Psychology:

Myth #1: Psychology is only for people with depression

Seeing a psychologist is recommended if someone is living with depression. It’s important to remember though that psychologists deal with a wide range of concerns and specialties that you might not be aware of.

For example, they might specialise in working with young children to help them reach key milestones in their development, such as building social skills and minimising anxiety. They could work with professional sportspeople to enhance their ‘mental’ game. They might apply their knowledge within the legal and criminal justice systems.

To find out about different specialties in the psychological practice, head to the APS website.

Myth #2: My child can’t benefit from psychology, they are too young

Many parents want the best for their child, and it can be confronting if their child is having trouble managing emotions, making new friends or learning new skills. Seeing a therapist early, however, may be an important step in addressing any developmental concerns early to give the child the best chance at reaching their full potential.

Approaches that foster positive behaviours can ease family distress. They also help support families of young children with disabilities to develop positive attachments . At Scope, we provide a range of therapy services that include Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Speech Therapy and of course Psychology to provide kids with the building blocks for their development.

Myth #3: People with disability don’t experience mental health issues

People with disability experience the same range of mental health issues as everyone else. They also have a right to access these services in a way that reflects their choices and preferences. Sometimes psychologists need to adapt the way they work with people, such as by making information more accessible, or giving a person more time to communicate how they are feeling. But the same principles apply, regardless of a person’s disability.