Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy

Your child may have survived a car accident, a dog bite, traumatic grief, or abuse. Because children lack the communication skills, they are likely to express distress through their behaviors or big emotions. As a parent you may be wondering, “What is going on with my child?”  “Why is she acting out lately?”  Or… “My child has just gone through something that no child should ever have to face.  I want to get him/her help, but just don’t know where to turn.”

Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy or TF-CBT is the number one evidence-based treatment model for children and adolescents (ages 3-18) experiencing symptoms from PTSD or trauma effects.  In a relaxed setting, we will help your child learn effective skills to cope with trauma-related emotional and behavioral problems. Your child can face and resolve these problems in a safe and effective way, thereby reducing the problem behaviors and symptoms.  We will teach your child relaxation techniques to meet their specific needs.  This therapy also provides support to the parent/caregiver.  And together, we will effectively integrate your child’s experiences to help them move on in a safe and positive manner.  

What is TF-CBT?  

TF-CBT is an evidence-based treatment that has been evaluated and refined during the past 30 years to help children and adolescents recover after traumatic events. Currently, 25 randomized controlled trials have been conducted with thousands of participants in the U.S., Europe and Africa, comparing TF-CBT to other active treatment conditions. All of these studies have documented that TF-CBT was superior for improving children’s trauma symptoms and responses. 


How it Works

TF-CBT is a structured, short-term treatment model consisting of 8-25 sessions (usually 50-90 minutes long). It has been shown to be effective in both individual and group treatment formats. Although TF-CBT is highly effective at improving youth posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, a PTSD diagnosis is NOT required to receive this treatment. Many children and adolescents present with a wide array of internalizing and externalizing symptoms after experiencing a traumatic event. TF-CBT effectively addresses many other trauma impacts including emotional (e.g., depressive, anxiety), cognitive and behavioral problems, as well as improving the parent’s personal distress, effective parenting skills and supportive interactions with the child. 

TF-CBT is skill-based, providing tools for the child and parent to overcome current problems and also deal with future reminders and stressors. The skills taught are:


P: Psychoeducation 

R: Relaxation 

A: Affective Modulation 

C: Cognitive Coping 

T: Trauma Narrative and Emotional Processing 

I: In vivo Desensitization 

C: Conjoint Session 

E: Enhancing Safety 

By contacting our office, you will be connected with a certified TF-CBT therapist and begin working together to identify your specific goals.

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