Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine

Conditions We Treat

Seattle Children’s Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine team specializes in caring for children and teens with a range of emotional, behavioral or neurodevelopmental concerns.

  • Anxiety and related disorders
    • Children ages 5 to 17 who have anxiety disorders such as separation anxiety, selective mutism, social anxiety, school refusal, panic disorder and specific phobias are seen in our Mood and Anxiety Program.
    • In addition, our Mood and Anxiety program treats obsessive-compulsive disorder and related conditions including trichotillomania, excoriation disorder and tic disorders including Tourette syndrome.
    • We also treat children ages 5 to 17 who have mood disorders, including depression and bipolar disorder.
    • Those age 4 or younger are seen in our Early Childhood Clinic.
  • Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
    • Children ages 4 or younger with possible ADHD or other problems with learning, attention and behavior are seen in our Early Childhood Clinic.
    • Those ages 5 to 15 with possible ADHD or related conditions are seen in our Program to Enhance Attention, Regulation and Learning (PEARL). PEARL is not for children who have learning disabilities without ADHD. Instead, talk with your child’s school about a special-education evaluation or services that might help.
  • Autism spectrum disorders

    Seattle Children’s Autism Center provides comprehensive care, including psychiatry and behavioral medicine, for children with autism spectrum disorders and other neurodevelopmental disabilities.

  • Depression, bipolar disorder and related mood disorders
  • Disruptive behavior
  • Eating disorders

    Our team works closely with other experts in the Eating Disorders Recovery Program to make sure your child receives complete care.

  • Gender identity

    Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine experts are part of the team providing compassionate, gender-affirming care in our Gender Clinic for adolescents and young adults: 

    • Whose gender identity is different from their sex at birth
    • Who do not identify with traditional definitions of male or female
  • Mental health needs related to another health problem

    We partner with providers from other areas of Seattle Children’s to serve children and teens who are getting medical or surgical care here for a wide range of conditions and who need mental health care or help coping with chronic illness.

  • Prenatal exposure to alcohol or drugs

    Some children struggle with learning, behavior or development because of exposure to alcohol or other substances before they were born (prenatal exposures). The Specialized Neurodevelopmental Assessment and Consultation Service (SNACS) clinic offers 3 to 5 visits with a provider who specializes in evaluating and creating a care plan for children with these concerns. SNACS is part of Seattle Children’s Autism Center. Learn more about SNACS (PDF).

  • Psychotic disorders

    We have providers who specialize in working with children and teens who have psychotic disorders, like schizophrenia.

  • Sleep challenges
    • The Early Childhood Clinic sees children ages 4 or younger who have behavior issues along with sleep issues.
    • If your child age 5 to 17 is seen in the Mood and Anxiety Program for anxiety, depression or another condition, we will address any related sleep issues your child might have.
    • Seattle Children’s also has a Sleep Medicine Program that offers testing (sleep studies), treatment and consultation for sleep disorders that affect babies, children and young people up to age 21.

We Do Not Treat These Conditions

Sexual abuse or sexual aggression as the main concern. Call the King County Sexual Assault Resource Center at 888-998-6423 or the Harborview Abuse and Trauma Center at 206-744-1600.

How to Get Services

We often have more requests from new patients than we have openings. To make an appointment, you need a referral from your child’s primary care provider. Learn more about how to get mental health services at Seattle Children’s.

If you have a referral, call 206-987-2164.

Providers, see how to refer a patient.

In crisis?

If you, your child, family or friend needs help right away, call or text 988. Chat is another option. The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline provides free and confidential support for people in distress, as well as prevention and crisis resources. The Lifeline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week in the United States.

Hotlines for Youth (PDF) provides other options for immediate help for children and teens. (Also available in Amharic, Arabic, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Somali, Spanish, Ukrainian and Vietnamese.)