Acute Stress Disorder (ASD)

Acute Stress Disorder (ASD) is a mental health disorder that usually occurs between 3 days and 1 month after a traumatic event. The epidemiology of the disorder varies depending on location and context; for example, rates of ASD are likely to be elevated among groups who have recently experienced a major traumatic event (e.g., a terrorist attack or natural disaster). The symptoms of ASD are like PTSD symptoms and are known to be a significant risk factor for the development of PTSD.

The most promising intervention known for helping children and adolescents with ASD, and even PTSD, is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT.) CBT consists of gradually exposing a child to feared thoughts, situations, and activities, thus helping the child develop more accurate and helpful thoughts about themself, the trauma, and other people.