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Clinic at the Royal Children's Hospital

Difficulties with social skills or relating to others can be caused by a variety of different problems. Examples of social skills difficulties include:

  • Talking too much, or too little
  • Sharing information in inappropriate ways
  • Relying on adults to get information
  • Not understanding facial expressions or body language
  • Being overly literal and not getting riddles and sarcasm
  • Withdrawing from conversations with peers
  • Preferring to talk to adults rather than own peers
  • Has little interest in social interactions
  • Goes off-topic or monopolises conversations
  • Doesn’t adapt language to different situations or people
  • Doesn’t give background information when speaking to an unfamiliar person
  • Doesn’t know how to properly greet people, request information or gain attention

Speech pathologists can help with social skills, as they have expertise in social communication, speech and language development, learning and cognitive abilities, and play skills. A speech pathologist can provide diagnostic assessments to determine the nature of your child’s difficulties. They can also use developmental and social interactive interventions in the child’s natural environment. These interventions are supported by the implementation of visual aids and strategies to enhance the child’s communication, social, behavioural, and play skills in all facets of his or her life.

The following practitioners at CPMG can be of service in assessing and managing social skills in children and adolescents:

Daryl is a paediatrician who has worked at the Royal Children’s Hospital for 30 years and currently holds appointments as a general paediatrician in the department of General Medicine at the Royal Children’s Hospital, associate professor in the University of Melbourne Department of Paediatrics, and senior research fellow in the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute.

Daryl is active in research into better ways to treat children with developmental disorders such as autism, ADHD and Tourette syndrome.

Fiona has worked with children and families with a broad range of difficulties for over 18 years.  Her experience spans a range of settings, including mental health and early intervention.  In addition to working in private practice, Fiona coordinates the Specialist Autism Team at the Royal Children’s Hospital and is engaged in teaching and lecturing.  

Michaela trained as a Paediatrician at the Royal Children’s and The Mercy Hospitals in Melbourne.

During her training Michaela specialised in developmental and behavioural paediatrics, but since then she has continued to work both acute and outpatient settings, seeing children of all ages, including babies.

Michaela’s areas of interests include developmental delay, speech delay, failure to thrive and growth concerns, Autism, ADHD, constipation, encopresis and enuresis, behavioural problems, anxiety, eczema, asthma and urinary tract infections.

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