I adhere to the gold-standard treatment for selective mutism, which includes behavioral treatment in the clinic, school, and home. My goal is not just to treat the child, but to train the adults in the child’s life so that the environment continues to reinforce the behaviors we want to see (verbal behaviors) and fade out what is not adaptive (mutism). Therefore, parent training is a large part of treatment with me. To enhance parent training, sessions are recorded so that we can review clips during parent feedback sessions. My goal is to empower parents and help them realize the power they have as agents of change for their child.
Not only is Parent training a large part of treatment with me, school is equally important. I find it ineffective to treat a child with SM without going into their school. Therefore, you can expect school observations, school team meetings, and school goals as part of treatment so that we can maximize treatment gains.
Treatment typically starts in the clinic; however, sometimes children warm up with more ease in their home setting, in which case I will start in the home. After the child develops a verbal relationship with me, then we leave the confines of the office (or home) and we go out to the school and community to help generalize speaking behaviors across settings. Main behavioral interventions I use include stimulus fading, contingent reinforcement, verbal shaping, and hierarchical exposure therapy. I provide outpatient therapy as well as intensive therapy, including Adventure Camp Intensive Treatment for Selective Mutism. In addition to providing private therapy to families, families have also been successful at procuring district-approved evaluations and consultations. I also provide In-Service Trainings to schools and other private practices, and consultations to other licensed clinicians who would like assistance with their cases.
Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, I strive to understand your child, get into their world so they don’t feel alone, hold the anxiety with them, look at it from all different angles, and work on using our brave together.
“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of it.” – Mark Twain
Carmen M. Tumialán Lynas, Ph.D.
Advanced Therapeutic Solutions
600 W 22nd Street, Suite 250
Oak Brook, IL 60523