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About Therapy

About Therapy

Trauma

Trauma is not only caused by major life events. But also minor ones that continue over time. The effects of trauma do not just disappear. In fact they often have lasting effects. Therapy deals with all kinds of trauma. Current and long past.

New research shows that trauma affects not only the mind but the body too. Trauma can be defined by any event that creates distress in a person exceeding their capacity to cope. When a traumatic event occurs the instinctive survival responses of flight/ fight of the autonomic nervous system are activated in order to defend. Exceedingly the capacity to cope with the feelings and bodily sensations results in overwhelm and disconnection…the state of freeze.

The highly aroused nervous system is unable to calm down, and stress hormones like adrenaline are released long after the traumatic situation has passed. The body continues to respond as if it is under threat, often for many years after the traumatic event. It is the “stuck energy” of this fight/ flight/ freeze response that can lead to many of the often “unexplained” symptoms that people complain about. Chronic stress has the same effect on the body over time. Therapy involves releasing this stuck energy and restoring the equilibrium of the nervous system.

Examples of trauma

Physical trauma: Falls, sports injuries, physical abuse and sexual abuse, rape, attacks, robberies.
Medical trauma: Operations, invasive medical or dental procedures, traumatic birth experiences.
Emotional trauma: Verbal and emotional abuse, loss of a loved one, death, work stress.
Relationship trauma: Divorce, domination, victimization, separations, relationship problems.
Developmental trauma: Childhood abuse, neglect, losses, lack of nurturance and love, abandonment, rejection.

Results of trauma

  • Anxiety, panic attacks, phobias, OCD, PTSD
  • Hypervigilance, palpitations, breathlessness, restlessness, tics. Etc
  • Depression, extreme mood swings
  • Angry outbursts, rage, temper tantrums, aggressive behaviour.
  • Poor concentration.
  • Chronic pain, digestive disorders, headaches, physical and psychosomatic illnesses
  • Auto-immune diseases, exhaustion, chronic fatigue, burnout.
  • Addictive behavior (cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, food, internet, sex etc.)
  • Sexual problems. Relationship difficulties.
  • Dissociation, “depersonalization”, confusion, feelings of emptiness and loneliness.

Healing Trauma

In healing trauma, we generally don’t go into the worst bits straight away. We don’t go there until the individual is ready to do so. Initially the goal is about the development of trust and connection between client and therapist and teaching self-calming and self-regulation skills. Only then do we go more deeply into the traumatic events, and we only do so with the participation and agreement of the client. Before we can go into traumatic memory we need to locate some internal or external resources of safety, comfort, love, support or strength.

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