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    The outcomes chart below is interactive. Click around to learn more about the transformative results of our wilderness therapy program.

    Ages 9-13

    Anxiety/ Depressed

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Over two-thirds of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of anxiety and depression upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 20% of the sample continuing to report depressive and anxious symptoms.

    Withdrawn/Depressed

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Forty-nine percent of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of withdrawal and depression upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly (8% of the sample continued to report internalizing symptoms).

    Aggression

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    66.1% percent of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of verbal and physical aggression upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 5% of the sample continuing to report symptoms of aggressive behaviors.

    Attention

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    38% percent of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of attention-related issues upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 10% of the sample continuing to report attention-related challenges.

    Rule Breaking

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    35% percent of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of rule breaking behaviors upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 5% of the sample continuing to report rule breaking behaviors.

    Social Problems

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    45% percent of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of social problems upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. Problems included loneliness, difficulty making and keeping friends, and excess dependency on others, for example.. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 17% of the sample continuing to report social problems.

    Body Complaints

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    44% percent of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of body complaints such as muscle aches, stomach discomfort, headaches, and fatigue upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 15% of the sample continuing to report body complaints.

    Thought Problems

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    52% percent of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of thought-related issues upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. Problems included self harm, repetitive behaviors, distractibility, sleep disruptions, and unusual behavior. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 27% of the sample continuing to report thought related issues.

    Externalizing

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    55% percent of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of externalizing behaviors (rule-breaking and aggressive behaviors generally) upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 5% of the sample continuing to report externalizing behaviors.

    Internalizing

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    68% percent of youth, between the ages of 9-13 presented with significant symptoms of internalizing behaviors (anxiousness, withdrawal, depressiveness, and physical complaints generally) upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 25% of the sample continuing to report internalizing behaviors.

    *Data provided by parents on the Achenbach System of Empirically Based Assessment.

    Achenbach, T. M., & Rescorla, L. A. (2001). Manual for ASEBA School-Age Forms & Profiles. Burlington, VT: University of Vermont, Research Center for Children, Youth, & Families.

    Ages 14-17

    ADHD

    ADHD - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    67% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant symptoms of ADHD upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (18% and 20% of the sample continued to report symptoms of ADHD at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    ADHD - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    28% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant symptoms of ADHD upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (8% and 12% of the sample continued to report symptoms of ADHD at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Disruptive Behavior

    Disruptive Behavior - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    42% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant symptoms of disruptive behaviors upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. Examples of these disruptive behaviors included stealing/shoplifting, running away, verbal aggression, and noncompliance. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (11% and 26% of the sample continued to report symptoms of disruptive behaviors at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Disruptive Behavior - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    25% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant symptoms of disruptive behaviors upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. Examples of these disruptive behaviors included stealing/shoplifting, running away, verbal aggression, and noncompliance. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (10% and 7% of the sample continued to report symptoms of disruptive behaviors at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Depression/Anxiety

    Depression/Anxiety - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    67% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant symptoms of depression and anxiety upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report (15% and 0% of the sample continued to report symptoms of depression and anxiety at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Depression/Anxiety - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    36% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant symptoms of depression and anxiety upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (10% and 7% of the sample continued to report symptoms of depression and anxiety at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Suicidal Thoughts

    Suicidal Thoughts - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    53% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant suicidal thoughts upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report (15% and 10% of the sample continued to report symptoms of suicidal thoughts at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Suicidal Thoughts - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    37% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant suicidal thoughts upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (11% and 10% of the sample continued to report symptoms of suicidal thoughts at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Peer Conflict

    Peer Conflict - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    68% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant peer conflict upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report (21% and 14% of the sample continued to report peer conflict issues at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Peer Conflict - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    28% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant peer conflict upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (13% and 7% of the sample continued to report peer conflict issues at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Sleep

    Sleep - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    25% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant sleep disruption, including insomnia and hypersomnia upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report (4% and 7% of the sample continued to report sleep disruption at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Sleep - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    23% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant sleep disruption, including insomnia and hypersomnia upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (10% and 3% of the sample continued to report sleep disruption at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Substance Use

    Substance Use - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    67% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant symptoms of substance use upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report (47% and 30% of the sample continued to report substance use issues at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Substance Use - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    45% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant symptoms of substance use upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (27% and 9% of the sample continued to report substance use issues at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    School

    School - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    47% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant issues related to school upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. . Examples of these challenges included truancy, disengagement, feeling criticized or performing poorly. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly , based on parents’ report (8% and 6% of the sample continued to report school related issues at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    School - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    18% percent of adolescents, between the ages of 14-17 presented with significant issues related to school upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. . Examples of these challenges included truancy, disengagement, feeling criticized or performing poorly. At graduation and one year following graduation from Trails, the majority of adolescents’ symptoms had improved markedly (7% and 3% of the sample continued to report school related issues at graduation and at the 12-month follow-up assessment, respectively).

    Data provided by parents on the youth version of the Treatment Outcome Package (TOP).
    Kraus, D. R., Seligman, D. A., & Jordan, J. R. (2005). Validation of a behavioral health treatment outcome and assessment tool designed for naturalistic settings: The Treatment Outcome Package. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 61, 285 – 314.

     

    Adopted Students – Parent Respondents

    Anxiety/ Depressed

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    67%of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of anxiety and depression upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report with only 19% of the sample continuing to report depressive and anxious symptoms.

    Withdrawn/Depressed

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    41% percent of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of withdrawal and depression upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report (5% of the sample continued to report internalizing symptoms).

    Aggression

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    60% percent of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of verbal and physical aggression upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report with 16% of the sample continuing to report symptoms of aggressive behaviors.

    Attention

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    38% percent of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of attention-related issues upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 12% of the sample continuing to report attention-related issues.

    Rule Breaking

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    54% percent of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of rule breaking behaviors upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report with only 1% of the sample continuing to report rule breaking behaviors.

    Social Problems

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    40% percent of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of social problems such as loneliness, difficulty making and keeping friends, and excess dependency on others upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report with only 9% of the sample continuing to report social problems.

    Body Complaints

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    39% percent of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of body complaints such as muscle aches, stomach discomfort, headaches, and fatigue upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, with only 14% of the sample continuing to report body complaints.

    Thought Problems

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    52% percent of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of thought related issues such as self harm, repetitive behaviors, distractibility, sleep disruptions, and unusual behavior upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report with only 22% of the sample continuing to report thought related issues.

    Externalizing

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    50% percent of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of externalizing behaviors (rule-breaking and aggressive behaviors generally) upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly, based on parents’ report, with 0% of the sample continuing to report significant externalizing problems.

    Internalizing

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    65% percent of adopted youth presented with significant symptoms of internalizing behaviors (anxiousness, withdrawal, depressiveness, and physical complaints generally) upon their arrival at Trails Carolina. One year following graduation from Trails, the majority of youth’s symptoms had improved markedly based on parents’ report with only 17% of the sample continuing to report internalizing behaviors.

    Data provided by parents on the Achenbach System of Empirically Based Assessment.
    Achenbach, T. M., & Rescorla, L. A. (2001). Manual for ASEBA School-Age Forms & Profiles. Burlington, VT: University of Vermont, Research Center for Children, Youth, & Families.

    Academics

    School Functioning

    School Functioning - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 46% of parents reported that their child struggled with issues related to functioning in school. One year after leaving Trails, the number of parents reporting that their children experienced these symptoms reduced by 87%.

    School Functioning - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 22% of students reported issues with school functioning. One year after leaving Trails, the number of students reporting these issues reduced by 87%.

    Missed School

    Missed School - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 48.5% of parents reported that their child was missing school a lot of the time. One year after leaving Trails, this issue was reduced by 94%.

    Missed School - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 33% of students said that they missed school a lot of the time. One year after leaving Trails, the number of students reporting these issues reduced by 92%.

    Trouble finishing

    Trouble finishing - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 54% of parents reported that their child had trouble finishing homework a lot of the time. One year after leaving Trails, this issue was reduced by 69%.

    Trouble finishing - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 19% of students said that they had trouble finishing homework assignments. One year after leaving Trails, the number of students reporting these issues reduced by 59%.

    Felt Criticized

    Felt Criticized - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 16% of parents reported that their child felt criticized in school. One year after leaving Trails, this issue was reduced by 82%.

    Felt Criticized - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 17% of students said that they felt criticized in school. One year after leaving Trails, the number of students reporting these issues reduced by 85%.

    Neglect Due To Substance Abuse

    Neglect Due To Substance Abuse - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 22% of parents reported that their child neglected school due to substance use. One year after leaving Trails, this issue was reduced by 95%.

    Neglect Due To Substance Abuse - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 4.5% of students said that they neglected school due to substance use issues. One year after leaving Trails, no students reported experiencing this issue.

    Felt Excited

    Felt Excited - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 28% of parents reported that their child felt excited about school. One year after leaving Trails, this number more than doubled.

    Felt Excited - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 52% of students said that they felt excited about school. One year after leaving Trails, 24% more students felt excited about school.

    Felt Acknowledged

    Felt Acknowledged - Parent Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 78% of parents reported that their child felt acknowledged at school. One year after leaving Trails, this percentage increased by 16%.

    Felt Acknowledged - Student Respondents

    percentage of sample with significant symptoms

    Treatment timeline

    Before enrolling at Trails, 78% of students said that they felt acknowledged at school. One year after leaving Trails, this number increased by 16%.

    *Data provided by parents on the Academic subscale of the youth version of the Treatment Outcome Package (TOP). Kraus, D. R., Seligman, D. A., & Jordan, J. R. (2005). Validation of a behavioral health treatment outcome and assessment tool designed for naturalistic settings: The Treatment Outcome Package. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 61, 285 – 314.

    Does Wilderness Therapy Work?

    Trails Carolina has partnered  with the Center for Research, Assessment, and Treatment Efficacy (CReATE; Asheville, NC) and the Arkansas Institute of Developmental Science to develop a research initiative, exploring the clinical presentation, therapeutic outcomes, and impact for youth and families involved in wilderness therapy programming.

    Both students and parents reported significant changes in behavior and symptoms–in both the youth and the family–from enrollment at Trails to one full year after graduation.

    This ongoing research initiative is assessing youth, parents, and families about a wealth of issues, including mental health symptoms, syndromes, and behavioral problems observed at four specific time periods:

    • Upon admission to Trails Carolina

    • At graduation from Trails Carolina

    • Three months after graduation from Trails

    • One year after graduation from Trails

    The research initiative utilizes a variety of assessment tools, including the Treatment Outcome Package (TOP), the gold standard for measuring response to therapeutic interventions, and the Achenbach System of Empirically Based Assessments.