Intensive Treatment Program for Troubled Teens

The support your family needs

Equinox Counseling and Wellness Center offers an Intensive Treatment Program for troubled teens that is like no other in the United States. Our program began with a vision of finding an alternative for families having to engage with multiple agencies or send their child out of the home to find the help they need. Parents have shared frustration, dissatisfaction, and even their traumatic experiences from having no options other than to send their teens out of state to specialized residential programs or jump between multiple agencies to get the required comprehensive care their family needs. Equinox developed its Intensive Treatment Program to provide a local AND comprehensive alternative that:

  • Provides a skilled and consistent support system that doesn’t change.
  • Keeps families intact in their community.
  • Uses an effective treatment model that attends equally to relationships and behaviors.

Our innovative program is specifically designed to bring the level of support families need into the home when a troubled teen disrupts a family system. We understand the layers of problems that can occur—high conflict at home, failing school, running away, using marijuana or other substances, stealing, and aggression—and believe we can help.

Creating a connection with teens and a partnership with parents

Our Intensive Treatment Program (ITP) is an individualized model that is designed to fit the specific needs of your family and teenager. While each family has unique goals, our ITP creates common outcomes of positive change, effective solutions, and sustainable progress. The program addresses communication, family relationships, problem solving, coping with anxiety, depression or trauma, peer relationships, drug and alcohol use, and making responsible choices in school, home and work.

Assessment – Our assessment process focuses on understanding what is happening with your family and how we can help. We want to get to know your child, important family members, and you as parents or guardians. We’ve found that it is valuable to start with activities that will engage your child—finding time to share a meal together at your home, visiting your child’s school, and taking the time to really understand your strengths and goals as a family.

Partnership – We then partner with you to design a treatment program to address the emotional, behavioral, and clinical needs of your family. Together, we will:

  • Identify your needs based on our continuum of care, which includes varying levels of intensity (low, moderate, high, intensive, and continuing care).
  • Develop a flexible course of treatment that can shift and change based on progress or concerns that may arise while your teen is working with us.
  • Determine the appropriate length of treatment. (The average is 12-24 months.)
  • Create a treatment plan and build our team of professionals that will work with your family.

Treatment Setting – We have learned that finding opportunities to practice skills in various environments, focusing on accountability to multiple relationships, problem solving in different situations, and increasing overall feelings of confidence and competence will create sustainable positive change for not only your teen, but your family as well. In addition to our office, we recommend venues and activities for therapy that are unique and purposeful to your needs, including:

  • Role playing and active learning in your home
  • Outdoor activities and recreation based on treatment goals
  • In schools and at job sites for academic and vocational support
  • Wilderness and adventure venues (rock climbing, ropes course, hiking)
  • Phone/email support throughout the week.

This is not an easy process, nor is it fast. We recognize that it takes commitment from each family member to be part of the change process. In return, we give you a highly personal experience with a team of committed, skilled and compassionate professionals that see your family as their utmost priority.

Learn more about the services included in our Intensive Treatment Program.

Weekly time for your child to have a safe space where he/she can communicate concerns, explore vulnerable challenges, and begin to work on building internal resources and competencies that will lead to better decisions, higher functioning, and healthier relationships. Our therapists are experts at building rapport with difficult adolescents who are determined to keep adults “out of their lives.” We have seen the most resistant and oppositional youth become open, caring and responsible individuals as they experience the emotional benefits of joining in their treatment process.

Time that gives parents and siblings a voice in the face of the difficult adolescent’s disruptive behavior. An essential part of our intervention services for troubled teens, Family Therapy helps teens learn how to be part of the healing and success of the family system. We believe that family therapy in the home or the office brings to life relational issues that need to be addressed in order to bring sustainable change to your home. It can be challenging, but it is also supportive, compassionate, and effective.

Services that focus on helping teens develop vital prosocial competencies for health (skill development), providing supervision and accountability to daily responsibilities, and increasing community resources to increase independence. In partnership with parents, we teach and help teens practice effective coping, emotional regulation, increased communication and adaptable life skills in the moment—all with the support of our caring staff to guide, offer feedback, coach and assist. These services may include activities related to job development, academic success, positive peer development, drug and alcohol prevention (such as urinalysis or a 12 step program), and promoting healthy family relationships.

An after-school service to support your teen’s success. Every youth deserves a chance to reach for the stars. However, most kids would settle for feeling confident, smart, and capable in the face of daily challenges. To support this, we offer Therapeutic Study Hall with two primary focus areas:

1) Teaching youth important concepts related to their thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Teens are are given structured treatment assignments, which include journaling packets, problem solving exercises, weekly accountability checklists, safety plans, weekly scheduling and more.

2) Assisting youth in homework or school related responsibilities that may be impacted by their emotional reactivity or conflict at home. We are not educators, nor is this an academically oriented program. It is a program to support teen’s success in communicating with teachers, coping with frustration, become better problem solvers and viewing themselves as capable learners.

A healthy adult role model in the community who exposes your child to new activities, increases recreational interests, teaches skills related to health and wellness and very importantly, provides a non-pressured, non-authoritative healthy adult relationship. In most situations, we find that all the relationships in a troubled teen’s life are pressured, have expectations attached, and are authoritative in one way or another. The mentoring relationship gives teens an important outlet that is not clinically based. Our community experts support youth and families through teaching self-advocacy and life skills, life coaching, job coaching/preparation, making community connections, and linking families with sustainable resources. Read more

One-on-one help to learn how to cope during times of high stress, anxiety and emotional outbursts. Through Parent/Guardian Coaching, we can give you strategies for behavior management and support in coping. Parents have found that working with a coach is effective and necessary to learn and use the common language and tools our therapists use in treatment with their child. Parent/Guardian Coaching can take place via email, text, phone calls, or set appointments. Our goal is to provide non-crisis based support throughout the week to help you deal with the high-risk, oppositional, and challenging behaviors and attitudes of the troubled teen. Read more

Wilderness therapy experiences created purposefully to support overall treatment goals in an outdoor and engaging environment. Wilderness and Adventure Therapy takes place in unique venues that allow us to provide rigorous yet exciting interventions that are proven to simultaneously challenge and engage your child. Each teen and their family have opportunities for action-based learning and challenging experiences to practice concepts (relationship skills, new belief systems, coping skills ) that complement what is being learned in Individual or Family Therapy. These activities might include rock climbing, rafting, hiking, biking, and art and pottery studios, as well as visits to local parks and reservoirs for specific skill-based activities.

Our experienced wilderness interventionists design programming that creates a deliberate balance of fun, healthy anxiety, treatment-specific interventions, and safe conditions. Each experience is designed as a one-day, weekend, or multi-day program, and scheduled with a frequency that suits your child’s treatment program. Read more

How do you get started?

Simply give us a call at 303-861-1916 or contact us to learn more about our Admissions Process.