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07

What Kinds of Therapy Can Help Treat PTSD?

Posted by Collaborative Counseling
Individual Therapy for PTSD Treatment

PTSD, like other diagnoses, has many treatments that can be effective for a broad array of individuals. Here, we will discuss some of the most popular and effective treatments for PTSD.

Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

TF-CBT specifically targets children and adolescents. It can also be helpful for adults who have suffered trauma. TF-CBT is especially helpful for youth who have experienced abuse, violence or grief resulting in PTSD. This is a short-term therapy that generally lasts anywhere between 8-25 sessions. TF-CBT works to change distorted or negative reactions and behaviors. Additionally, family dynamics are emphasized in this approach as therapists aim to teach parenting, stress management and communication skills that can help the client succeed.

EMDR

EMDR stands for Eye-Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. It helps the brain to reprocess the memories of the traumatic event. In turn, this helps to relieve many of the symptoms associated with PTSD and improve a person’s overall functioning. EMDR is different than traditional talk therapy. It identifies specific memories to target, so the client fully process past experiences and the feelings associated with the memory. Eventually, the goal is to replace negative thoughts and feelings with more positive ones that promote healthy behaviors.

Narrative Therapy

 Narrative therapy focuses on the story that someone who has experienced trauma, tells themselves. The story told to oneself can influence how that person perceives the world and their experiences and ultimately, their well-being. NT requires the client to tell the story of their life (chronologically) focusing on the traumatic event(s) or experience(s). The therapist asks the client to narrate the traumatic experience(s) and describe their emotions, thoughts and physiological responses to the therapist, all while remining connected to the present. This therapy asks a person to reflect on their entire life which means it can address multiple traumatic incidents. In the end it can help the client realize their human rights and gain back their self-respect.

Prolonged Exposure

Prolonged exposure therapy is a part of cognitive behavioral therapy (or CBT). Many individuals who have experienced trauma actively avoid anything that reminds them of said trauma.

This intervention works to teach whose individuals to confront their trauma-related memories, feelings and situations. In turn, this decreases the symptoms of PTSD by teaching the individual that their memories and feelings surrounding their trauma are not dangerous and do not need to be avoided. This is also a short-term therapy lasting anywhere from 8-15 sessions and gradually challenges the individual to confront uncomfortable stimuli and cope with the emotions associated with the stimuli.

It is important to keep in mind that there are a wide variety of therapies that may be able to help you or someone you know deal with their trauma. The best place to start is to find someone you feel comfortable with that can help you work through what you are dealing with. A great deal of research indicates the benefit of therapy is strongly correlated to the relationship a person has with their therapist, so finding someone that you connect to is very important. Visit our website to learn more about our team and how they can help you move forward at: https://www.collaborativemn.com/meet-our-team.

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02

Moving Towards Change

Posted by Collaborative Counseling
Fork in the Road Symbolizing Moving Towards Change

Change Is Difficult

As almost all people know, it can be really hard to change! When we think about ways to move towards change, some ideas work well and others not so much. Here is a list of routes to change from least effective to most effective (according to Ann Betz, coach and poet).

Some Ways We Try to Make A Change

  • Ignore the problem – pretend everything is okay, push the feeling aside… This is NOT effective
  • Control the environment – make sure you don’t encounter stress. Helps a little but most stressors are unavoidable at some point
  • Name emotion – short venting. It’s great to name the emotion, however we still haven’t gotten to problem solving.

Effective Ways to Make A Change

  • Put attention on what’s important – explore what fulfills you. Here we get clear on our intent for ourselves and for our lives, this is important groundwork for the next steps!
  • Reframing – learn to look at things from a new angle. Now we are able to look at problems with a bit more objectivity and find new, healthier ways of thinking.
  • Mindfulness – learn to be in the here and now, get present. Often with depression, anxiety and other issues we are living in the past or the future. Learning to be mindful involves staying present to what’s going on right now. Until we learn to stay present, change can be hard to come by.

We are all guilty of trying to use the first few methods to make changes in our lives, even when we are aware that they are ineffective. Instead of utilizing these ineffective methods, think about the above routes to change and how you can move yourself towards the bottom few ideas. Using these tools will certainly move you closer to the change you desire. If you are seeking more guidance on changing your thinking visit our website to learn how we can help https://www.collaborativemn.com/counseling-services/individual-counseling

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