This chapter discusses comprehensive school crisis interventions, identifies the characteristics that define a crisis, finds ways to assess for the level of traumatic impact, and determines what interventions can be provided to help with response and recovery. It highlights the PREPaRE Model of crisis prevention and intervention. There are six general categories of crises: acts of war and/or terrorism; violent and/or unexpected deaths; threatened death and/or injury; human-caused disasters; natural disasters; and severe illness or injury. Children are a vulnerable population and in the absence of quality crisis interventions, there can be negative short- and long-term implications on learning, cognitive development, and mental health. Evidence-based interventions focusing on physical and psychological safety may be implemented to prevent a crisis from occurring or mitigate the traumatic impact of a crisis event by building resiliency in students. Crisis risk factors are variables that predict whether a person becomes a psychological trauma victim.
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- Go to chapter: Evidence-Based Interventions for Major Depressive Disorder in Children and Adolescents
Depression is a chronic, recurring disorder that impacts children’s academic, interpersonal, and family functioning. The heritability of major depressive disorder (MDD) is likely to be in the range of 31% to 42%. This chapter begins with a brief overview of the etiology of depression. It presents a description of a cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) intervention designed to be delivered in a group format, an individual interpersonal intervention, and an individual behavioral activation (BA) intervention that includes a great deal of parental involvement. The ACTION program is a manualized program that is based on a cognitive behavioral model of depression. There are four primary treatment components to ACTION: affective education, coping skills training (BA), problem-solving training, and cognitive restructuring. The chapter concludes with a brief discussion of universal therapeutic techniques to be incorporated into work with depressed youth regardless of the therapeutic orientation or treatment strategy.
Divorce is a lengthy developmental process and, in the case of children and adolescents, one that can encompass most of their young lives. This chapter explores the experience of divorce from the perspective of the children, reviews the evidence base and empirical support for interventions. It provides examples of three evidence-based intervention programs, namely, Children in Between, Children of Divorce Intervention Program (CODIP), and New Beginnings, appropriate for use with children, adolescents, and their parents. Promoting protective factors and limiting risk factors during childhood and adolescence can prevent many mental, emotional, and behavioral problems and disorders during those years and into adulthood. The Children in Between program is listed on the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices. The CODIP and the New Beginnings program are also listed on the SAMHSA National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices.
Children and youth with serious emotional, behavioral, and social difficulties present challenges for teachers, parents, and peers. Youth who are at risk for emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD) are particularly vulnerable in the areas of peer and adult social relationships. The emphasis on meeting academic standards and outcomes for children and youth in schools has unfortunately pushed the topic of social-emotional development to the proverbial back burner. This chapter emphasizes that social skills might be considered academic enablers because these positive social behaviors predict short-term and long-term academic achievement. Evidence-based practices are employed with the goal of preventing or ameliorating the effects of disruptive behavior disorders (DBD) in children and youth. An important distinction in designing and delivering social skills interventions (SSI) is differentiating between different types of social skills deficits. Social skills deficits may be either acquisition deficits or performance deficits.
Eating disorders (EDs) are a complex and comparatively dangerous set of mental disorders that deeply affect the quality of life and well-being of the child or adolescent who is struggling with this problem as well as those who love and care for him or her. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) outlines specific criteria for the diagnosis of anorexia nervosa (AN), bulimia nervosa (BN), binge eating disorder (BED), and other specified feeding or ED. Treatment of eating disordered behavior typically involves a three-facet approach: medical assessment and monitoring, nutritional counseling, and psychological and behavioral treatment. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT) are also evidence-based approaches to treatment for AN. The treatment of EDs should be viewed as a team effort that integrates medical, nutritional, and mental health service providers.
Asthma, a pulmonary condition, is a chronic respiratory disorder typified by persistent underlying inflammation of tissues, airway obstruction, congestion, hyperresponsive airways, and the narrowing of smooth airway muscle. Asthma is one of the most common chronic medical conditions in children and is the leading cause of school absenteeism. This chapter describes childhood asthma, including its causes and triggers. It elucidates the extant research supporting treatment of the disorder and provides step-by-step empirically based interventions to ameliorate asthmatic symptomatology in children. The psychological underpinnings of asthma have been investigated in the field of psycho-neuroimmunology (PNI), which examines the interplay of the central nervous system, neuroendocrine, and immune system with psychological variables and their relation to physical health. Researchers have shown that relaxation and guided imagery (RGI), written emotional expression, yoga, and mindfulness therapy improve pulmonary lung functioning, decrease rates of absenteeism, and improve overall quality of life.
This chapter reviews the empirical support for such a multifaceted approach by considering selected neurodevelopmental concerns and medical variables that present as obstacles to healthy neurodevelopment. It discusses select neuro-developmental prenatal complications that can be prevented or ameliorated through behavioral interventions with the pregnant mother. The chapter addresses the deleterious effects of legal substances on the developing fetus, but professionals should be vigilant about preventing or reducing intrauterine exposure to illicit substances as well. Tobacco is a legal substance that, when used during pregnancy, has the potential to harm both the mother and fetus. Of particular concern with tobacco use are the detrimental health risks, such as hypertension and diabetes, which adversely affect the cerebrovascular functioning of pregnant women. The process of neurodevelopment is complex and represents a dynamic interplay among genetics, behavior, demographics, the environment, psychosocial factors, and myriad physiological factors.
- Go to chapter: Integrating Theories of Developmental Psychology Into the Enactment of Child Psychotherapy
Child psychotherapy requires case conceptualization through the lens of developmental psychology in a multimodal approach to assessment, diagnosis, treatment planning, and clinical interventions. This chapter outlines a blueprint for therapists to provide treatment for children by integrating these fundamental principles while collaborating with the other people in the child’s life. The chapter guides the therapist through case conceptualization that integrates the most efficacious treatment interventions into the eight-phase template of eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR). Adaptive information processing (AIP) theory drives treatment with EMDR throughout the eight phases of that protocol and provides a template for case conceptualization and treatment planning. The use of the EMDR approach to psychotherapy is well documented and approved as evidence-based practice in Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA) and California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare (CEBC).
- Go to chapter: A Developmentally Grounded and Integrative Clinical Approach for Treating Complex Trauma and Dissociative Disorders in Children
A Developmentally Grounded and Integrative Clinical Approach for Treating Complex Trauma and Dissociative Disorders in Children
Children are exposed to distress, violence, and trauma even before they are born. In-utero and early childhood exposure can contribute to severe medical and psychological consequences. Children who have been exposed to such traumatic events often arrive at the psychotherapist’s office with emotional and behavioral symptoms suggestive of reactive attachment disorder (RAD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and dissociation. This chapter reviews relevant theories of dissociation integrated with theories of development to provide a summary of how attachment impacts dissociation. With a developmentally grounded theory of dissociation, the chapter describes clinical interventions for treating the dissociative sequelae of attachment trauma in children. This theoretical framework offers a developmentally grounded and integrative framework for working with children with complex trauma and dissociation. Symptoms of dissociation are common with PTSD, but an extreme response to trauma can be dissociation and dissociative disorders.
This chapter presents how eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy and Theraplay can be used together when treating children with a history of complex trauma. Theraplay focuses on the parent-child relationship as the healing agent that holds within it the potential to cultivate growth and security in the child. The chapter shows some core concepts that help define and illuminate the application of Theraplay. Now that a clear review of basic Theraplay principles has been provided, people need to look at EMDR therapy and the adaptive information processing (AIP) model in conjunction with Theraplay and Theraplay core values. Early in its development, Theraplay integrated parental involvement into its therapeutic model. During the reprocessing phases of EMDR therapy, Theraplay can be very helpful in providing different avenues for emotion regulation and for the repairing of the attachment system.