Trauma Focused Therapy
Symptoms of Trauma:
According to the four types of symptoms listed in the DSM-5
- Avoiding specific locations, sights, situations, and sounds that serve as reminders of the event
- Anxiety, depression, numbness, or guilt
- Intrusive thoughts, nightmares or flashbacks
- Anger, irritability, and hypervigilance
- Aggressive, reckless behavior, including self-harm
- Sleep disturbances
Negative Mood and Cognition Symptoms
- Loss of interest in activities that were once considered enjoyable
- Difficulty remembering details of the distressing event
- Change in habits or behavior since the trauma
Trauma causes lasting changes in the areas of the brain responsible for regulating emotion, thought, and memory. When your brain is hijacked in this way, regaining control is difficult, no matter how long ago the trauma occurred. It can rob your sense of safety, joy, connection to yourself and the world around you. Healing through trauma can give you a greater appreciation of life, connection to others, compassion for self and others and gratitude for a purposeful, meaningful life experiences. The road to recovery from trauma, chronic stress and distressing life events can be challenging.
Trauma focused therapy can take many forms and may utilize many different techniques, from talk therapy, to more structured approaches such as EMDR. According to the National Center for PTSD, EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is an evidenced based treatment for PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), chronic stress and other distressing life events. In conjunction to EMDR there are also many complementary and integrative modalities that help to restore wellness when a person has been traumatized. They include yoga, mindfulness, movement, expressive and somatic therapies as well as energy healing practice
Post traumatic growth is a term used to describe the personal growth that many trauma survivors experience in their recovery process. Research shows that 30-70% of all trauma survivors will experience post traumatic growth in their healing process. This growth can change a person’s life philosophy, bring greater awareness of their personal strengths, create a greater sense of gratitude, increase their appreciation for the “small things” in life and even prompt spiritual growth.
WHAT IS EMDR?
According to the EMDR Institute, EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a psychotherapy that enables people to heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences. Repeated studies show that by using EMDR therapy people can experience the benefits of psychotherapy that once took years to make a difference. It is widely assumed that severe emotional pain requires a long time to heal. EMDR therapy shows that the mind can in fact heal from psychological trauma much as the body recovers from physical trauma. When you cut your hand, your body works to close the wound. If a foreign object or repeated injury irritates the wound, it festers and causes pain. Once the block is removed, healing resumes. EMDR therapy demonstrates that a similar sequence of events occurs with mental processes. The brain’s information processing system naturally moves toward mental health. If the system is blocked or imbalanced by the impact of a disturbing event, the emotional wound festers and can cause intense suffering. Once the block is removed, healing resumes. Using the detailed protocols and procedures learned in EMDR therapy training sessions, clinicians help clients activate their natural healing processes.
While many people can recover from trauma over time with the love and support of family and friends and bounce back with resiliency, others may discover effects of lasting trauma, which can cause a person to live with deep emotional pain, fear, confusion, or posttraumatic stress far after the event has passed.
In these circumstances, the support, guidance, and assistance of a therapist is fundamental to healing from trauma.
If you or someone you know matches the trauma symptoms listed above, we I can help and invite you to contact us today.