DR TANYA ILIEVA, PHD: HELPING PEOPLE BECOME WHAT THEY CAN BE


Dr Tanya Ilieva, PhD, is as talented in helping both children and adults, as she is driven

Tanya Ilieva psychologist.jpg

She is a school psychologist, has a private practice and is a registered member of the Association of Psychologists in Bulgaria and of the Union of Scientists in Bulgaria. She has authored two books on child psychology and specialises in work with gifted children, children with developmental deficits and also with corporate clients.

What are the specificities of working with children and adults?

All humans, both children and adults, have identical psychological needs: to be accepted, loved, validated, seen, included, and supported. However, while the adult can state their needs and can work individually with the psychologist, psychological work with children requires work with the parents as well. In the case of teenagers, when parents are not present in the session, they should receive updates, feedback and advice on how to improve their child's psychological well being.

A child diagnosed with developmental deficits: is this a verdict or an opportunity for positive development?

When the parent notices that their child lags behind their peers they can get anxious and confused. If the young child has missed important milestones and does not talk, smile back or engage emotionally with the outside world, I recommend a consultation with their pediatrician and then with a child neurologist or psychiatrist. Kindergarten and school teachers can also give information on possible lags in development or unusual behaviour. If these specialists give negative feedback, the parents should seek a child psychologist.

Our task is not only to identify and treat deficits in the child's development, but also to help parents accept the diagnosis and create a positive and encouraging environment for their kid. Depending on the individual case, we can recommend work with a speech therapist, a special needs teacher, work therapist, art therapist, kinesiotherapist and others. Parents have to know that they are not alone, there is help and support. It is not an easy journey, but their children deserve these.

You say that you help people become what they can be. How do you achieve this in practice?

My main focus is to find the strong sides of all my patients, both children and adults. I seek opportunities to increase their time on activities that develop and inspire the self and boost their confidence. It is important to seek a solution within the patient's environment – the family. In my practice, the family, both the living members and the ancestors, is a key factor.

I use techniques from clinical psychology – tests for assessment of psychological processes such as intellect, attention, memory, thinking, emotion, communication skills, skills to obey rules, hyperactivity, social adaptation etc.

Therapeuthically, I use techniques from art therapy, give tasks for development of logical thinking and constructive skills, and have therapies with sandbox, dolls and others that help dealing with emotions and expressing yourself. I also use the methods of family and system constellations. For each session I select the techniques that are fit for the individuality and deficits of the patient and for the next stage of their positive development.

Sofia, 38 Ivan Vazov St

+359 88 842 2158

tanya.bg

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