Child Clinicians Use Unproven PTSD Therapies

According to a study in the September 2008 American Journal of Preventive Medicine, there are only a few proven, effective practices for treating children with post-traumatic stress disorder. Yet more than 75% of mental health professionals may be practicing something else.

According to the meta-analysis conducted by the Task Force on Community Preventive Services, “evidence was insufficient to determine the effectiveness of play therapy, art therapy, pharmacologic therapy, psychodynamic therapy, or psychological debriefing in reducing psychological harm.”

On the other hand, Reuters reports:

"There is substantial research showing the effectiveness of group or individual cognitive behavioral therapy in treating children and teens experiencing the psychological effects of trauma," the CDC's Robert Hahn, who led the study, said in a statement. "We hope these findings will encourage clinicians to use the therapies that are shown to be effective."

Read the abstract or the Reuters article for more details.