Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: A Primer for Child Welfare Professionals

Date: October 2018

Trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy (TF-CBT) is an evidence-based treatment approach shown to help children, adolescents, and their parents (or other caregivers) overcome trauma-related difficulties, including child maltreatment. TF-CBT helps children address distorted or upsetting beliefs and attributions and learn skills to help them cope with ordinary life stressors. It also helps parents who were not abusive to cope effectively with their own emotional distress and develop skills that support their children. This factsheet is intended to help child welfare professionals build a better understanding of TF-CBT, including which clients should be referred for this approach, how it is implemented, and resources for additional information. 

Suggested Citation: Child Welfare Information Gateway. (2018). Trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy: A primer for child welfare professionals. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Children's Bureau.

This material may be freely reproduced and distributed. However, when doing so, please credit Child Welfare Information Gateway.

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