What is a Residential Youth Treatment Specialist?

Today’s residential youth treatment specialists, or RYTS, save many of tomorrow’s generation from some very real and threatening mental health dangers. How exactly is this done? Read on to learn more about the very important role of the RYTS in society right now.

Residential Youth Treatment

Residential youth treatment programs are facilities set up to take in at-risk youths or those already suffering from the effects of various forms of mental illness, addiction, or similar issues. These programs serve as the service providers for communities in which there may not be any other more appropriate forms of help available for this troubled portion of the youth population. These facilities are secured and staffed by many different types of healthcare professionals ready to help those coming in for that help.

The Specialist’s Role

Residential youth treatment specialists are the special professionals who work hands-on with this type of minor once they are admitted into the program. In this role, the RYTS acts as a sort of hybrid teacher, mentor, monitor, counselor, and case manager for the youths in the program. For a closer look at the daily role of this professional, we can look to the hypothetical case of Winston the teenager.

Winston has been admitted to the local treatment center with a history of depression as well as a drug addiction. As soon as he enters the facility and is registered, he will join up with a residential youth treatment specialist who will work with him closely from here on. While housed at the facility, Winston will have his private room, a schedule that includes meals, recreation time, bathing and personal hygiene and group time with other youths in the program. Throughout, he will have contact and a working relationship with his overseeing RYTS.

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The residential youth treatment specialist will monitor his activities, counsel him, act as caring mentors to him, and record his progress as he continues through the program. Other professionals will also work with Winston and his RYTS team to return him to good mental health and help him develop strategies to avoid these issues in the future. These include professional counselors, doctors, nurses, addiction specialists, and others. Eventually, the goal is to have Winston in a safe and healthy state for release out of the program.

Becoming One

To become a residential youth treatment specialist, an associate’s degree in an applicable field of study such as criminal justice, healthcare, counseling, youth studies, or similar discipline is required. Aside from this requirement, entry-level workers in this role may need a certification which essentially states that they are capable and healthy for this professional role and have been background-checked accordingly. This certification necessity varies from state to state.

Related Resource: 10 Most Affordable Online Developmental Psychology Online Programs

The mental health of the youth today directly impacts the greater health of society tomorrow. For more information on youth mental health, treatment options, common concerns, and more, Youth.gov provides an excellent directory of information and resources devoted just to these very subjects. These are the basics of the integral role of today’s residential youth treatment specialist – making tomorrow a much healthier place for us all.