“Trauma is primarily physiological…it is something that happens initially to our bodies and our instincts. Only then do its effects spread to our minds, emotions and spirits.” – Dr. Peter Levine
After experiencing a traumatic event or events one often feels overwhelmed, hypervigilant, anxious, unsafe in one’s own body, ashamed, and avoidant of specific situations. Memories may seem unclear or missing, but the act of remembering can feel re-traumatizing. Depression, anger, recurring thoughts of the event, physical reactions (e.g. headaches, chest pains, insomnia), and low-self-esteem can all stem from trauma.
Racial trauma, or race-based traumatic stress (RBTS), refers to the mental and emotional injury caused by encounters with racial bias and ethnic discrimination, racism, and hate crimes When a person experiences an emotionally painful, sudden, and uncontrollable racist encounter they are at risk of suffering from a race-based traumatic stress injury. In the U.S., Black, Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) are most vulnerable due to systemic racism prevalent in our society. Prolonged incidents of racism can lead to symptoms like those experienced with post-traumatic stress disorder. Symptoms can look different across different cultural groups.
Trauma-informed therapies offer a safe experience in which to address the realities of trauma, to heal from them and to restore a sense of empowerment and control in your life. Trauma informed therapies are effective in addressing symptoms associated with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), sexual abuse, sexual assault, childhood trauma, racial trauma, grief, dissociative disorders, self-injury and witnessing violence. Read more about the mind, the body and trauma in the interview with Bonnie Badenoch.
Lakeview Center therapists trained in trauma work offer Body-Mind Psychotherapy (BMP), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), and Somatic Experiencing (SE), which are integrated with traditional talk therapies as the client needs.
Body-Mind Psychotherapy (BMP) involves the practice of embodiment and meditative awareness as the ground for healing and integration. This process reintroduces us to the innate intelligent resourcefulness of the body.
EMDR operates with the understanding that traumatic memories get “stuck” and hinder functioning. Eye movements paired with specific methods of recalling disturbing memories help to elicit healing and resolution.
Somatic Experiencing (SE) is a body-based therapy that works to reinstate the nervous system’s natural responses to threats that had been thwarted due to a traumatic event. When these natural responses are safely engaged again, symptoms associated with PTSD will decrease.
For more information about trauma therapies, please contact us.