Cognitive-behavioural interventions for children who have been sexually abused

Added August 29, 2019

Citation: Macdonald G., Higgins J.P.T., Ramchandani P., et al. Cognitive-behavioural interventions for children who have been sexually abused. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2012, Issue 5. Art. NO.:CD001930. DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD001930.pub3.

Evidence suggests that Cognitive-behavioural therapy may have a positive impact on the effects of child sexual abuse.  

Cognitive-behavioural approaches are used to help children and their non-offending or ‘safe’ parent to manage the sequelae of childhood sexual abuse. This review assesses the efficacy of cognitive-behavioural approaches in addressing the immediate and longer-term sequelae of sexual abuse on children and young people up to 18 years of age.  Ten studies, in which a total of 847 children participated, met the inclusion criteria for the review. The reporting of studies was poor, and there appear to be significant weaknesses in study quality. The evidence suggests that CBT may have a positive impact on the effects of child sexual abuse, including depression, posttraumatic stress and anxiety, but the results were generally modest. Implications for practice and further research are noted. 


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