Review of the Evidence for Neurofeedback Training for Children and Adolescents Who Have Experienced Traumatic Events

Trauma Violence Abuse. 2023 Dec;24(5):3564-3578. doi: 10.1177/15248380221134295. Epub 2022 Nov 23.


Neurofeedback training is an established treatment for children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism spectrum disorder and is an increasingly accepted modality of treatment in the context of child trauma. This treatment is typically delivered as a complement to more traditional talk therapy such as trauma-focused-cognitive behavioral therapy (TF-CBT). This review examined the evidence for the effectiveness of this intervention for children with trauma through a systematic search of the literature. A targeted search across databases identified 10 eligible studies that focused on children/young people who had experienced traumatic events and/or demonstrated symptoms of trauma, and which conducted a repeated measures study at a minimum. While the included studies suggest some benefits from neurofeedback training, the available studies, including randomized trials, have to date been relatively small, involve dramatically different treatment length and intensity, and show inconsistent benefits relative to usual treatment conditions. To advance knowledge of this intervention further research is needed with a clear best practice protocol and with a clearer target group.

Keywords: NFT; PTSD; child trauma; neurofeedback.

Publication types

  • Review