How do we get started?
Mental and behavioral services for youth are very different than services for adults. Some of their therapeutic treatments, such as mentoring, may even take place at a park or community activity. While individual and family counseling may be part of a youth’s treatment plan, there is much more than “therapy” available for kids and families. Here are some guidelines to help you understand what to expect — we know it can be a difficult and emotional process to seek help, so please let us know what we can do!
- If you would like to contact us directly for help, please call 1-877-458-7022 or visit our locations page to connect with an office near you. Our Area and Program Managers are always happy to help a family learn more about Youth Dynamics’ services and how we can help you!
- A teacher, doctor, or other professional may refer you to Youth Dynamics for assistance. They will probably also help you in gathering some of the information you will need. However, you are also welcome to contact us on your own if you have questions. After setting up a meeting, you will come for an “intake appointment.” At this time, you’ll learn more about the services we offer, the next steps for you and your family, and financial resources. We accept many types of insurance and we do have a sliding scale for those without insurance. In addition, we work with youth on Healthy Montana Kids health care programs. Healthy Montana Kids (HMK) is the program formerly called CHIP; HMK Plus is the program formerly called Children’s Medicaid. We are happy to help you in any way we can during this process. For more information about paying for treatment, please see FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE.
- After your first appointment, a therapist will meet with the youth and family (as appropriate) to do an “assessment.” This process ensures that the child receives the services she or he needs. If your child has received mental health services elsewhere, we will still do this to make sure all information is up-to-date and accurate. This makes a BIG difference, as thoughts, feelings, and behaviors change over time.
- Other than information that affects the health and safety of a child, everything you say to us is confidential. We will not release you or your child’s name to any one unless previously agreed upon or legally required.
- After the assessment, you will begin working with Youth Dynamics on a regular basis. You may have several staff who serve your child. In addition, you may work with more youth/family agencies than just Youth Dynamics. We encourage families to advocate for the services and providers who work best for them, so please tell us about your concerns and preferences.
- We do not provide in-patient hospitalization or “acute” care, although we are happy to help you find those services if needed. Youth Dynamics is not able to provide emergency services for youth in crisis, however, so please call 911 in those cases.
- Youth Dynamics works closely with many State of Montana offices, but we are not a government agency. We are a non-profit Montana organization serving kids and families with emotional and mental health challenges — and we have nearly 30 years of proven experience helping youth. At this time, we serve only Montana residents and all our services take place within the state. We believe strongly in keeping kids as close to family or their support network as possible, even when receiving more intensive services.
What are some of the typical problems that you can help with?
Unfortunately, there are many problems we see every day in children and youth. Among them are acting out, problems with authority, difficulty in school, difficulty with peers, fighting, shyness, poor attention span, anger, violence, isolation, nightmares, wetting the bed, anxiety, nervousness, sadness, no plans for the future, and thoughts of doing harm to themselves. We also provide many treatment resources for youth who have been affected by abuse, neglect, and/or trauma.
Most of the youth we work with have what is called an “SED Diagnosis,” which is a mental health term. SED means severely emotionally disturbed, but that is medical terminology and does not mean a youth is dangerous or mentally incompetent. Many of our youth with SED diagnoses go on to do well in school, to pursue meaningful careers, and to raise happy, healthy families.
Typical SED diagnoses that we may treat include Bipolar Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Reactive Attachment Disorder, and Major Depression. YDI also offers treatment programs for other behavioral issues, including substance abuse and youth with issues related to sexual abuse and highly sexualized behavior.
Where is Youth Dynamics available in Montana?
Youth Dynamics has services directly in Billings, Colstrip, Miles City, Glendive, Wolf Point, Glasgow, Malta, Havre, Great Falls, Shelby, Kalispell, Helena, Boulder, Butte, Dillon, Bozeman and Livingston. We can travel to towns with 60 miles of these communities to provide direct services to families. If you are not sure which office to call, please contact us at 1-877-458-4908 and we would be happy to help.
How do we pay for services?
YDI accepts HMK Plus (Medicaid), HMK (CHIP), some private insurance plans, and offers a sliding scale fee option for some families. See FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE.
What’s the difference between “mental health,” “emotional health,” and “behavioral health”?
Behavioral health services include mental and emotional health treatment. Our approach is to work with youth on specific behavioral problems, while also addressing emotional issues, ways of thinking, and decision making. We also offer some specialized services, like substance abuse treatment and independent living skills, that are not traditionally considered “mental health” services. Basically, behavioral health means mental and emotional health, as well as additional services that at-risk youth often need.