Trauma Focused Therapy That Achieves Results
In order to provide effective trauma therapy techniques, it is crucial that we understand the basic human responses to traumatic stress and how we as organisms cope with overwhelming emotional situations. Trauma based therapy is built on our current understanding of the common responses that humans exhibit to traumatic experiences. Despite advances in research, it is also true that trauma affects each individual quite differently and the occurring disorders that result from it are equally unique.
Some people exhibit symptoms that are clearly associated with PTSD, while others demonstrate a resilient response and only experience short-term disturbances. Our early life and development, including parent and caretaker relationships and our own history of childhood trauma has so much to do with our ability to cope with trauma as adults.
At our trauma treatment center, we utilize scientifically proven methods to help clients process and release the negative emotions and limiting self-beliefs associated with trauma so that they can move forward in their lives. We do not place a strong emphasis on Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) or other CBT-related modalities. Our experience suggests that trauma release therapy methods, such as EMDR, are more effective at rapidly and completely eliminating distress. When these methods are utilized in a intensive retreat setting, lasting progress can be achieved in a days, not months or years.
We stay current with all emerging research to provide you with cutting edge treatments as soon as they become available. Trauma is not a life sentence, and as our clients continually prove to us, even the most intense traumas can be healed.
Trauma Informed Therapy For Everyone
We can utilize trauma focused therapy as our treatment model for issues including depression, anxiety, PTSD, physical, sexual violence and emotional abuse, child abuse, grief and loss, eating disorders, addiction and substance abuse, personality disorders and more. At the core of trauma are negative emotions and limiting self-beliefs that are connected to an intensely negative experience. These must be addressed through trauma informed care in order for symptoms to be dissipated.
At our trauma treatment center, we use EMDR, often called the gold standard for trauma release therapy, and IFS to process the negative emotions associated with your traumatic experiences. The memories remain, but they no longer have power over you in an unhealthy and distressing way. Limiting self-beliefs are then reshaped into positive beliefs that support and empower you.
Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy vs EMDR
TF-CBT is designed to assist children and their families to work through the negative effects of a traumatic experience. This trauma based therapy can also help parents and caretakers to better cope with the thoughts and emotions relating to trauma. It requires that parents and children practice certain skills at home in order for it to be optimally effective. The therapist will use a variety of trauma therapy techniques to help children and parents develop the resources necessary to work through the negative experience that caused the trauma. It relies heavily on the trust between the child, parent or caretaker and therapist. Results are often achieved with 16-25 sessions.
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a form of trauma release therapy designed for people of all ages to process traumatic memories by processing the negative emotions and limiting self-beliefs associated with them. During a session, the therapist leads the client through sets of side-to-side eye movements, sounds or tapping. Sets last approximately 30-60 seconds, after which the client will be asked to briefly discuss what came up for them before going into the next set. This process is called desensitization. The goal of desensitization is for the client to follow their thoughts and allow the intensity of the negative emotions to reduce until complete resolution is achieved. Often this can happen in only a few sessions. An advantage of EMDR is that there is no homework between sessions and the client does not need to share many details of the trauma with the therapist for the method to be effective.
Compared to Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, EMDR is simpler, requires much less work between sessions and can often achieve results in significantly fewer sessions than TF-CBT. Of all methods of trauma informed therapy approach, it is our belief that EMDR can achieve the most effective and lasting reduction in trauma symptoms in the shortest period of time. When used in an intensive therapy retreat at our trauma treatment center, results are further accelerated, as processing can occur for several hours each day.
There is constantly new and emerging research in the field of trauma focused therapy, leading to exciting new discoveries about the brain and how we cope with traumatic experiences. Trauma, in the purest sense, is our response to life-threatening experiences. This fits in with our understanding of the activation during trauma of the older brain structures in our limbic system, or "reptilian brain". Yet many traumas can occur from events that are not truly life-threatening.
It seems that an abuse or betrayal from somebody that we rely on for survival, such a parent or caretaker, may produce similar consequences as a more obvious threat, despite the lack of real danger. This may have to do with the subjective component of our traumatic experiences, as humans naturally create meaning out of the context in which events occur. Being let down by somebody who is a fixture in our lives can trigger a very real and very intense fear response. Trauma based therapy is still learning the nuances of this complex field of study. As research continues, it is likely that someday we will understand more deeply how each individual is predisposed to react to negative life experiences so that we can cater our trauma therapy techniques uniquely to them.