Your What’s Next Journal: May 2021 — What’s Next for Kids? Child psychiatrist Dr. Gayani DeSilva shares her insight

A Note from Hope Katz Gibbs & Cynthia de Lorenzi, authors, Your 2021 What’s Next JournalWhile people worldwide are anxious to see how. When the pandemic ends, we don’t know a parent (or grandparent) who isn’t equally concerned about how this traumatic experience impacts our kids.

So we are thrilled to interview Dr. Gayani DeSilva, a child and adolescent psychiatrist who has authored two books focused on helping parents help their children cope. This Brown University and Harvard-trained physician has worked with thousands of patients and has won numerous awards to help children in juvenile justice centers and foster care.

“I am dedicated to improving the health and wellness of children, and also the whole family,” says Gayani, who practices in Laguna Beach, CA. “Straight talk and practical expertise are my tools. “To understand the deeper needs of a child, a parent can better support them as they mature.”

Her books include:

A Psychiatrist’s Guide: Helping Parents Reach Their Depressed Tween, which focuses on how parents can converse with their children who have a mental illness, the skills and tools presented apply to all children’s parents.

“Parents, when faced with the challenge of trying to connect with their children, are frequently so focused on their child talking with them that they miss ways to make a meaningful connection that leads to increased understanding between the parent and child,” explains Gayani, who integrates her knowledge about neurodevelopment, psychological development, and psychiatric disorders into offers parents tools to bond, bolster their child s self-esteem, and aid their child’s development.

Her second book is A Psychiatrist’s Guide: Stop Teen Addiction Before It Starts.

“Addictive substances and activities hijack the teenage brain to create an addiction,” she explains. “I demystify addiction from a neurological and psychological perspective, and in the book, explain the way the brain changes in response to addictive stimuli and psychological factors.”

Coming soon: We are thrilled to tap Gayani’s experience and get her advice on how parents everywhere can not only help their children avoid depression and addiction in trying times like these — but actively engage with kids during the new age of distance learning, socially isolating, and coping with the new normal that is happening around the globe.

Stay tuned for more!