At Thriving Minds, we are pleased to offer Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) to children ages 3-17 at our Chelsea location. TF-CBT is a treatment for children and adolescents to address traumatic events. Traumatic events include experiencing and/or witnessing any abuse (physical, emotional, sexual), domestic violence, an unexpected or violent death, violent crime, serious accidents, or natural disasters. When children and adolescents experience a traumatic event, it can lead to symptoms such as upsetting memories or thoughts, nightmares, avoidance of reminders of the event, difficulty concentrating, high irritability, or emotionally “shutting down.”
TF-CBT involves several components, including psychoeducation about trauma, relaxation and coping skills, emotion recognition and regulation, and identifying negative thought patterns. Towards the middle of treatment, the child creates what is called a trauma narrative, or their memories and experiences of the traumatic event. The child processes this with their therapist and then shares it with a supportive adult, often a parent. Treatment is typically short, usually lasting 12-25 sessions, but with flexibility to be longer or shorter as needed.
There have been numerous studies on the efficacy of TF-CBT. It is the most evidenced-based treatment available for children and adolescents struggling with trauma. A child does not have to meet the criteria for a Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) diagnosis to benefit from treatment. Evidence has shown that TF-CBT has helped children and adolescents with PTSD, depression, anxiety, externalizing behavior problems (such as acting out or self-harm), relationship and attachment problems, and problems in school. Studies have shown it to be effective with children ages 3-19 of all different backgrounds.
If you have a child that may qualify for TF-CBT and you are interested in pursuing treatment, please call us at 734-433-5100 to make an appointment. We have a nationally certified therapist with experience working with children with trauma who is here to help.