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(p. 133) Relaxation Skills 

(p. 133) Relaxation Skills
(p. 133) Relaxation Skills

Esther Deblinger

, Anthony P. Mannarino

, Judith A. Cohen

, Melissa K. Runyon

, and Anne H. Heflin

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date: 21 October 2020

This chapter describes parent sessions that provide further psychoeducation including information about the flight, fight, and freeze response to help parents better understand their children’s emotional and behavioral reactions to child sexual abuse (CSA). Effective parent coping is emphasized with the introduction of focused breathing, mindfulness, and other relaxation activities. Parent skill-building activities designed to enhance nurturing parent-child interactions and adaptive child behaviors via positive rituals and effective use of praise are outlined. Focused breathing, mindfulness, and other relaxation exercises are described as these skills are introduced to youth in parallel individual sessions. The gradual exposure process continues during this component with both parents and youth through general discussions related to CSA, as well as the use of relaxation skills when needed for coping with trauma reminders faced in the environment. Practice activities designed to encourage the use of relaxation skills between sessions are described as are potential conjoint skill-building session activities.

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