Dr Helen Ritzema

Dr Helen Ritzema

I am a Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist who has developed a breadth of experience in assessing and treating children, young people and families.

I joined the Queen Anne Street Practice in January 2017 initially working both privately and maintaining my role as a lead member within the Parenting and Child Team in the Department of Child and Adolescent Mental Health, Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital. I moved fully into private practice in July 2019.

I trained at the Anna Freud Centre and University College London, completing an MSc in Psychoanalytic Developmental Psychology and a Clinical Doctorate in Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy. Prior to this I had completed a Degree in Psychology and trained as a Paediatric Nurse, working for several years within Guys and St Thomas NHS Trust

Prior to joining the Queen Anne Street Practice, I worked in the NHS for 20 years, initially as a nurse and then as a Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist. I am experienced in offering short and long-term treatment for depression, anxiety, acute and complex trauma, as well as for attachment issues and mental health difficulties including low self-esteem, poor peer/family relationships, low mood and bereavement. I have also assessed children, young people and families and written expert witness reports for the Family Law Courts since 2009. 

I am passionate about furthering both my own understanding and progressing my profession as a whole. I have active roles within the Association of Child Psychotherapists, and I was part of the national IMPACT study researching adolescent depression. I am also trained in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation Reprocessing) and am able to offer this either as a specific treatment modality or alongside a psychotherapy approach.

As each person’s situation is unique, recommendations about the treatment will be based on individual circumstances and take their views into consideration. I very much enjoy the process of offering a therapeutic space to enable the child, young person or parents to better understand their situation, thoughts and feelings. By developing a better understanding of themselves the aim of the treatment is to enable the person to develop skills for understanding and managing their emotions that stretches beyond the therapeutic space.   

I am registered with the Association of Child Psychotherapists (ACP) and am a member of the EMDR Association.