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For Parents

About BrainChild Psychology and Neurotherapy

Who am I?

Dr Rachael Macdonald is a leading Psychologist, with over 23 years of experience in specialist Child and Adolescent psychological assessment and intervention. Dr Rachael has a special interest in the health and functioning of the brain, and she provides assessments and treatments that promote neuroplasticity and optimal brain functioning.

BrainChild Psychology and Neurotherapy can provide services in the following areas:

  • Assessment
  • Brain Mapping
  • Neurotherapy
  • Psychological Intervention
For more information about Dr Rachael's qualifications click on About Dr Rachael.

Psychological Assessment

Your child’s teacher, doctor or other healthcare provider may have told you that your child has some learning, developmental or behavioural difficulties, and recommended that they see a Psychologist for assessment:

  • A thorough and comprehensive assessment of a child’s presenting problem is a necessary first step prior to implementing any intervention plan.
  • The assessment process is designed to identify your child’s strengths, weaknesses and areas for potential intervention.

What does the Assessment involve?

BrainChild Psychology and Neurotherapy uses the latest in digital and computerised testing equipment to assess children who have difficulties with learning and thinking skills, memory, social-emotional and behavioural difficulties.

  • Typically, the assessment process will involve a parental and child interview, the completion of questionnaires specific to the child’s presenting problem/s, individual administration of psychological assessments, and the completion of questionnaires by the child’s teacher (if possible).
  • Dr Rachael also offers individual Brain Mapping as part of each assessment (where appropriate), in order to identify areas of generalised or localised brain dysregulation.
  • The assessment process may take several sessions to complete, depending on the child’s age and complexity of the referral question.

What kinds of Assessment does BrainChild Psychology and Neurotherapy offer?

BrainChild Psychology and Neurotherapy offers comprehensive assessment in the following areas:

  • Cognitive/Intellectual ability (Impairment and Giftedness)
  • Psychoeducational/Academic achievement
  • Learning Difficulties
  • Neuropsychological functioning
  • Memory and Learning
  • Visual and Auditory Attention
  • Executive Functioning
  • School readiness
  • Infant development
  • Behavioural functioning
  • Adaptive behaviour
  • Sensory functioning
  • Auditory processing

The specific assessments to be completed by your child will be discussed with you at the initial consultation.
Please bring copies of any medical, psychological and school assessments that your child may have undertaken previously, so that any changes in performance can be noted.

Brain Mapping

  • Brain Mapping uses EEG (brainwave) technology to identify the presence and severity of imbalances and dysregulation in the brain, which are at the core of many childhood problems.
  • Brain Mapping may be completed separately or in conjunction with psycho-educational or neuropsychological assessments.


Why Neurotherapy?

Dr Rachael came to the study of Applied Neuroscience and Neurotherapy in order to achieve better treatment outcomes for her clients. After feeling frustrated that many children with neurodevelopmental difficulties and acquired brain injuries were unable to make effective use of traditional psychological intervention techniques, Dr Rachael has spent several years investigating the validity of using neurotherapeutic techniques as an adjunct to traditional psychological treatment. She has subsequently undertaken intensive training and expert supervision to becoming certified in EEG Brain Mapping and Neurofeedback Therapy.

What Neurotherapy does?

  • It provides information about your child’s brain functioning obtained by a Brain Map ties directly to an individualised, brain-based treatment program, designed specifically to suit each child.
  • It helps to retrain the brain to work differently. The brain is the seat of all of our thinking, learning, social, emotional, psychological and behavioural functioning and well-being, so when we experience difficulties in any of these areas, it makes sense to directly treat the areas of the brain that are responsible for the problem, rather than using general treatment methods which are not specifically targeted to each child’s specific needs.

What is Neurotherapy helpful for?

Neurotherapy can help many conditions including:

  • Addiction
  • Anxiety
  • Attention
  • Autistic Spectrum Disorders
  • Behavioural issues
  • Brain injury
  • Cognitive function
  • Concentration
  • Concussion
  • Depression
  • Emotional regulation
  • Epilepsy
  • Fatigue
  • Memory
  • Migraines
  • Mood disorders
  • Motor skills
  • Pain
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Sleep difficulties (insomnia, frequent night wakings)
  • Stroke
  • Tics, Tourette’s Syndrome

Benefits of Neurotherapy:

Neurotherapy is beneficial for treating neurological dysregulation related to:

  • Arousal
  • Sleep/wake cycles
  • Cognitive processing
  • Sensory processing
  • Inhibition of motor responses
  • Moods and emotions
  • Memory

Psychological Counselling

  • Counselling and psychological treatment programs are available for a range of childhood issues.
  • Consultations are available for children and parents individually.
  • Psychological counselling is only offered via face-to-face consultation, and is not available via telephone.

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