What Types Of Trauma Treatment Are Appropriate For Youth?

Kids are the future and must be protected. Unfortunately, life isn't always predictable, and death, abuse, and violence can cause trauma at early ages. Youth trauma must be treated sensitively to avoid alienating or further traumatizing kids and teens. Here are some techniques that qualified counselors can use to help young people work through their trauma.

1. Play Therapy

Talking about traumatic events can be upsetting for anyone, especially kids who do not yet have the emotional resiliency and maturity of adults. Play therapy is one way for counselors to connect with children. This type of therapy utilizes the natural childhood behavior of play to encourage kids to express themselves. During play therapy, kids will not be pushed to talk about any particular subject. Rather, the familiar act of playing with toys can help them feel comfortable enough to open up in their own time.

2. Art Therapy

Older children and teens may not benefit from play therapy as much as younger children do. Fortunately, art therapy can be beneficial for people of all ages. Art therapy helps people express themselves through the creation of visual art. Feelings and memories that are too difficult to talk about may be safely expressed through drawings and paintings. As kids create art, they'll have the opportunity to discuss the meaning of their creations and the feelings they evoke with their counselor. Art therapy can be a way for youth to find healing after trauma.

3. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive-behavioral therapy can help kids and teenagers that are stuck in unhealthy patterns due to their trauma. Often, trauma survivors develop thought patterns and behaviors designed to protect themselves from future trauma. Unfortunately, these same behaviors can keep people from experiencing peace and joy. CBT can help people overcome defense mechanisms that are no longer serving them. This type of therapy can help children as well as adults. 

4. Acceptance And Commitment Therapy

Acceptance and commitment therapy can also be beneficial to people who have experienced trauma. Unlike CBT, which focuses on changing thought patterns, ACT is focused on acceptance. This form of therapy may be best suited to teenagers since it requires deep introspection. People who undergo ACT will be encouraged to carefully examine their values. Naming and prioritizing their values can help young trauma survivors reclaim their power. ACT can also help youth come to terms with their past experiences so they can move forward with a healthy and more unencumbered attitude.

For more information, contact a company like LifeLine For Youth.