Individual Counseling To Treat Acute Trauma
Individual counseling is available at Take Charge, Inc. to help you learn to identify and recover from various types of trauma. In a previous blog, we gave an overview of different types of trauma. In this post, we look more deeply into how individual counseling can help acute trauma, or trauma caused by a single incident or shock.
Traumatic injury shocks and alters all systems, including:
- Cognitive: The ability to process thoughts and make good judgments is impaired.
- Emotional: Recurring or constant feelings of shame, guilt, fear, anger, and pain.
- Physical: Every physical system is affected, including muscles, joints, digestion and metabolism, temperature, sleep, and immune system.
- Spiritual: How we see reality, our understanding and meaning of life, society, and the world, is affected by the trauma.
- Social: Relationships with spouses, family, friends, colleagues, and strangers (because it affects so many so deeply, it affects structures of societies) are all impacted by trauma.
How Individual Counseling Can Help
Bottom-up modalities are ways of engaging survivors experientially, focusing on improving self-regulation through body awareness (the awareness of and attention to sensations and processes in the body) and expanding the survivor’s feelings of control and ability to tolerate triggers. These modalities use talk to process the dynamics of therapy but do not rely on cognitive processing.
EMDR, or Eye Movement Desensitization And Reprocessing, uses eye movements (or other bilateral stimulation) in individual counseling to reconnect the survivor in a safe and measured way to the images, thoughts, emotions, and body sensations associated with the trauma and work toward resolution. Internal associations arise and the clients begin to process the memory and disturbing feelings. The meaning of painful events is transformed on an emotional level.
Somatic Experiencing (SE) addresses the dysfunction in your nervous system caused by your trauma, helping you to fully process the experience. SE teaches you to notice bodily sensations stemming from mental health issues and then use this awareness to acknowledge and work through distressing and painful sensations.
Polyvagal therapy is based on the role of the vagus nerve in emotion regulation, social connection, and fear response. This modality directly addresses the autonomic nervous system in individual counseling, helping survivors retrain their nervous systems, improve self-regulation, and build autonomic pathways for connection and safety.
Top-down modalities are talk-based therapies, such as Cognitive and Behavioral Therapy (CBT.) Cognitive Behavioral Therapy specifically focuses on challenging and changing cognitive distortions and behaviors, improving emotional regulation, and developing personal coping strategies that target solving current problems.
In CBT, exposure to the trauma narrative and triggers are used in a controlled and planned way to help survivors reduce avoidance and dysfunctional associations with the trauma. The goal is to give the survivor back a sense of control, self-confidence, and predictability, and reduce avoidance and escape behaviors.
Trauma Informed Therapy at Take Charge can help you address areas negatively impacting your ability to live a fulfilling life. For more information about individual counseling and Trauma Informed Therapy, call Take Charge, Inc. at (913) 239-8255.
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