Journal of Trauma & Treatment

ISSN: 2167-1222

Open Access

Vicarious Trauma and the Impact of Child Trauma Treatment on the Therapist


Tara Shuman*

Mental health clinicians who treat childhood trauma are impacted in a variety of ways by this challenging work. These therapists bear witness to, contain and intervene with countless stories of childhood trauma, including abuse, neglect and other traumatic and adverse childhood experiences that children endure. Therapists who treat childhood trauma are continually engaging with unthinkable events that negatively impact the hearts, bodies, minds and overall functioning of youth. A possible consequence of childhood trauma treatment is for the therapist to experience vicarious trauma. This brief paper outlines the causes of vicarious trauma as well as steps clinicians can take to reduce the severity and frequency of experiencing vicarious trauma.


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