April Book of the Month- Assessing and Treating Youth Exposed to Trauma

Posted on 2 April 2022

Each month AAPi members receive access to a new, free reference book. Members also have on-demand access to an additional 49 reference books, 6 journals and the complete DSM-5 library (update coming soon). This is over $5000 worth of high-quality professional resources included in AAPi’s membership fee of $50 for students and provisional psychologists and $150-$300 for full membership. Not a current member? Renew or join now.

Our April Book of the Month is Assessing and Treating Youth Exposed to Trauma. Access the book now.

About the book

Assessing and Treating Youth Exposed to Traumatic Stress is a cogent, caring, and comprehensive response to the reality that many children live lives of constant threat, fear, and confusion while lacking opportunities for positive social interactions, stimulation, and empowerment. Although the book is written for mental health clinicians, teachers and others who support traumatised youth will find this book an essential addition to their professional libraries. Identifying these children is the first step, and the importance of careful assessment through use of the clinical interview—in both individual and group settings—is emphasised. In addition, the population with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is highly diverse in terms of presentation and target symptoms, and the book explores differences in type, duration, and accumulation of trauma; age of insult; stress vulnerability; family history; and other individual factors. Nearly a dozen treatment options are presented in the book, and they are distinguished by setting, such as clinic, home, or school, and modality, such as psychotherapy or pharmacology. Attention is also paid to preventive measures, most of which are school- or group-based, to increase resiliency where possible. 

The book addresses critically important issues in treating young people with PTSD in chapters that are articulate, accessible, and actionable:

  • Because PTSD rarely exists alone, suggestions on how to manage the challenging issues surrounding common comorbidities, such as mood and anxiety disorders, are examined in depth. Even when individuals do not meet the full clinical criteria for PTSD, elevated rates of mood and anxiety disorders have been identified.
  • A separate post-traumatic diagnosis for preschool children was introduced in DSM-5, and the book highlights the special sensitivity and careful questioning necessary to elicit detailed histories and contextualise trauma in the very young because of their limited vocabulary and concrete thinking.
  • Whenever appropriate, the chapters take a developmental approach to illustrate how treatment techniques are applied to preschoolers, school-age children, adolescents, and transitional-age youth.
  • In today's era of natural disasters, there is great need for effective interventions for large groups of young people. The chapters on school-based assessment and interventions present information on screening; disaster prevention, response, and recovery programs; and evidence-based targeted trauma intervention across developmental levels.

The editor, Director of the Stanford University Early Life Stress Research Program in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, has assembled a list of contributors who are at the forefront of clinical research in this important area of focus, and Assessing and Treating Youth Exposed to Traumatic Stress reflects the authors' belief that society, as a whole, must ensure that children who face adversity have the opportunity to develop to their full potential.


In this era of advances in neuroscience and epigenetics, latest knowledge in assessment and evidence-based best practices is essential. Savvy clinicians, both seasoned and fresh, who work with children of all ages, will find this book to be an invaluable resource with everything needed to get up-to-speed on a wealth of techniques, research and theories, supplemented by fascinating discussion of cases.—Laura C. Strom, MS, LMFT, Trauma and Disabilities Specialist, Doctoral Candidate, California Southern University Doctorate of Psychology (PsyD) program, 2015-2016 President, California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists

This textbook quality, comprehensive volume provides up-to-date academic standards and evidence-based interventions for working with youth exposed to trauma. It makes exemplary use of clinical material and case vignettes, labeling key concepts and providing discussion questions to offer the full scope of assessment, case conceptualisation, and state-of-the-art treatment models.—Lisa Amaya-Jackson, M.D., M.P.H., UCLA-Duke National Center for Child Traumatic Stress, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, North Carolina

Access the book now.