By Emily Habelrih
The National Institute of Mental Health (USA) defines childhood trauma as: “The experience of an event by a child that is emotionally painful or distressful, which often results in lasting mental and physical effects.”
Childhood trauma can result from a number of different things. For example, if a child witnesses or experiences an event such as a car accident. However, childhood trauma can also include sexual abuse, neglect, emotional abuse, physical abuse, experiencing war/death, accidents, natural disasters, and so on. Trauma can even result from a medical procedure/illness or the death of a close family member.
One of the most common methods of therapy to assist children who have experienced trauma, is TF-CBT (trauma-focused cognitive behavioural therapy). TF-CBT addresses the specific emotional and mental health needs of children, adolescents, adult survivors, and families who are struggling to overcome the destructive effects of childhood trauma.
There are a number of TF-CBT resources, that I have reviewed in the Anxiety Resource Guide. This can be purchased from the 'shop' section of this website. However, I have found some great free downloadable resources for you guys:
1. A TF-CBT workbook for young children: https://tfcbt.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Your-Very-Own-TF-CBT-Workbook-Final.pdf
2. A TF-CBT workbook for adolescents: https://depts.washington.edu/hcsats/PDF/TF-%20CBT/pages/7%20Trauma%20Focused%20CBT/Dealing%20with%20Trauma%20-%20A%20TF-CBT%20Workbook%20for%20Teens.pdf
3. A booklist of resources related to trauma and TF-CBT: http://www.episcenter.psu.edu/sites/default/files/ebp/TF-CBT-Book-List.pdf
4. A powerpoint presentation full of information on TF-CBT: https://www.cibhs.org/sites/main/files/file-attachments/fri_1pm_plaza_a_hendricks_tf-cbt_with_young_children_and_their_families_for_ebp_symposium_2015.pdf
I hope you find these resources useful and they are able to help the children and young people you work with!