Pediatric Behavioral Health in Pulmonology

Chronic lung illnesses, like asthma and cystic fibrosis, can be very stressful for children, teens, and their loved ones.

Behavioral health providers integrated into the Division of Pulmonology at UPMC Children’s Hospital provide collaborative care with you and your child’s medical team to provide support and intervention to improve health outcomes. They help study and track your child's development and psychosocial progress.

Our team provides evidence-based treatments and connects you with helpful resources near you.

How Behavioral Health Can Help Your Child with Their Lung Condition

Referrals for behavioral health come from your child's pulmonologist or another member of their care team.

They may refer your child to a behavioral health provider for many reasons, including:

  • Trouble accepting the diagnosis.
  • Problems adhering to or following treatment plans.
  • Delayed development.
  • Issues with school attendance and changes.
  • Problems building positive peer relations.
  • Trouble coping with frequent hospital stays.
  • Any other behavioral health concerns that impact daily life.

Behavioral Health Care for Children with Lung Disease

Our behavioral health experts support your child, you, and your family in many ways.

They provide education, tools, and techniques to:

  • Learn about normal and problematic responses to the stress of chronic lung disease clinic visits.
  • Support you and your child during hospital stays.
  • Address depression, stress, behaviors, and sleep problems that may interfere with your child's diagnosis.

Our behavioral health providers also teach skills and methods to help children and families:

  • Make plans for managing treatment.
  • Improve communication to increase compliance with treatment.
  • Manage the stress and worry of medical tests and treatments.
  • Help older children and teens start to take over their own treatments.
  • Handle major life transitions (going to school or work) while dealing with the stressors of living with chronic lung conditions.
  • Advocate for school and workforce supports.
  • Cope with grief and loss.
  • Connect with local support near you as needed.