Brainspotting can treat anxiety, depression, phobias, panic disorder, chronic pain, and impulse control. It is especially effective for processing trauma because it helps clients access the limbic system, where unconscious traumatic memories are stored.
Experiencing a trauma trigger is not just being upset by disturbing content. It’s a response wired into our brain by a past event, causing thoughts, emotions, bodily sensations, and behaviors that often feel automatic and out of one’s control.
Brenda Denzler, a North Carolina writer, recounts in the online magazine Cure the abject fear that gripped her as she prepared for surgery. “Fear and anxieties so intense that they bordered on hysteria emerged,” writes Denzler. Luckily, the surgery went well and her fears subsided. Then in 2018, she was diagnosed with cancer. “I was… read more
As infants, we are completely dependent on the responses of those around us. Our attachment to caregivers begins during the first 18 months of our lives, with instinctual behaviors like crying or clinging when we need help or attention. As stated by Positive Psychology, these behaviors are thought to be evolutionary mechanisms that help infants increase their chances of survival.
Unlike the relatively similar behaviors of infants, caregivers may respond with a whole range of reactions. Their responses to our behavior teach us what is “acceptable” and what isn’t. This has a huge impact on how we interact with people going forward.
The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett’s 20th century novel, tells the story of Mary Lennox, a girl who moves to England following the deaths of her parents. As she copes with her grief, she also faces ill health, loneliness and a ton of additional concerns that we now would recognize as major stressors. As you… read more
What is integrative (mind-body) medicine? We used to think that our mental, emotional, and physical health were completely separate. If you wanted to treat one, you didn’t have to consult with the others. Yet as our knowledge has advanced, we’ve learned that this old myth is far from true. This has led to the rise… read more
Discussions of mental health on our televisions represent a radical change; there was a time when mental health was so stigmatized that people avoided discussing it within their families, let alone engage with it on a public platform. In many ways, this shift towards mental health representation is a major win. Shows that “do it right” can normalize conditions that might have otherwise felt isolating or shameful, and can encourage viewers to seek treatment.
Many trauma survivors experience challenging “anniversary reactions,” which are defined as “unique set[s] of unsettling feelings, thoughts or memories that occur on the anniversary of a significant experience.” When a survivor finds themselves in the midst of a trauma anniversary, they often are forced to re-live feelings from the traumatic event, causing symptoms like increased anxiety, depression, trouble sleeping, loss of appetite, nightmares, and irritable outbursts.
EMDR is successful in reprocessing addiction memory (the type of memory that worsens cravings). In one study, chronically alcohol-dependent clients received either traditional addiction treatment or traditional addiction treatment with two EMDR sessions. Clients who received only traditional treatment reported no reduction in cravings, while clients who received the adjunctive EMDR treatment experienced significant reduction.
We all have times where we can’t focus, don’t feel motivated, or want to be alone. But when we’re dealing with chronic mental health concerns like depression or anxiety, these issues can linger and prevent us from being happy and succeeding in our careers.