Problem Severity Guidelines  

In order to judge the severity of a child's emotional, behaviour or mental health problems use the following guidelines. If you feel that the problem/s is more severe than slight consult a mental health professional, doctor or qualified play therapist as soon as possible.

Degree
Impact
Examples
Slight
Temporary impairment of well-being; minor loss of functioning.
Hospitalisation for a minor operation.
Mild
Some loss of well-being, ongoing impairment of functioning preventing the child reaching their full potential.
Unresolved relationship issues: friendships, sibling rivalries.
Moderate
Child feels emotionally unwell, considerable impairment of functioning, problems need to be dealt with promptly to prevent further deterioration.
Stress and trauma – e.g. parents are in the process of divorcing and the family is injured in a road accident.
Severe
Mental illness or disorder child at risk and unable to function as a normal person.
Repeated physical and sexual abuse from several sources.

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