When a person experiences trauma, much of the time they do have the coping skills to effectively process the experience. This is not their fault. Few of us were given tools to help to deal with traumatic incidents. Inadequate processing of traumatic events can lead to mental health disorders, such as generalized anxiety disorder or PTSD. Individual trauma therapy helps a client reprocess those experiences and learn to cope with feelings of anxiety related to one or more incidents.
Individual Trauma Treatment
There are many experiences that can cause trauma in a person’s life. Some of the most common types of trauma include:
- Critical, unpredictable or alcoholic home
- Verbal, physical or sexual abuse by parent, caretaker or sibling
- Neglect or abandonment
- Birth trauma – either giving birth or being born
- Divorce – either parents divorced or as an adult going through divorce
- Loss, grief, unresolved situations
- Attacks, rape or disaster
- Events during or after active addiction
- Car accidents – symptoms may not appear until months later
- Medical procedures or fear of procedures
Any traumatic event can adversely affect a person’s mental health and quality of life. Often, the brain becomes overwhelmed and does not properly process or “store” these traumatic memories, which leads them to experience stress and symptoms of mental health disorders. Some of the most common mental health disorders associated with trauma are anxiety and PTSD.
PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder, is a condition where a person has difficulty overcoming anxiety and fear related to a traumatic incident. They may experience flashbacks, nightmares, and anxiety when reminded of the event. In individual trauma counseling, therapists help clients reprocess these memories so they no longer upset them and also develop healthy coping mechanisms during flashbacks or panic attacks.
What Happens in Individual Trauma Therapy?
In individual therapy, a therapist will work with you to better understand your trauma and the way it affects your quality of life. After an evaluation to make sure we are a good fit, a therapist will put together a treatment plan to determine the most helpful way to proceed. Depending on your needs and how you respond, the therapist will offer a variety modalities or techniques:
- Anxiety therapy
- EMDR therapy
- Somatic therapy (Somatic Experiencing, Trauma Resiliency Model, and/or Sensorimotor)
- Havening Technique
- Cognitive behavioral therapy including things to do outside of sessions
- Internal Family Systems working with roles inside
- Imagery to work with neural pathways
- Creative interventions including: Writing, poetry, art, music
- Mindfulness to train our minds for different experiences
Alongside individual talk therapy, these techniques can help clients unpack memories, feelings, and thoughts in ways that are beyond talk therapy.
Do I Have to Share Everything?
You share what you want to share. Trauma can be difficult to talk about, especially if it’s your first time discussing it with anyone. A therapist has the training to help you explore your memories or impressions of the past in a comfortable and healthy manner, and it’s their job to make you feel as safe as possible during individual trauma treatment.
When you enter trauma counseling, you begin building a relationship with your therapist. Recovering from trauma can be a long journey, and your therapist is there to guide you throughout the process. Once you form trust with your therapist, you can share more difficult details of your trauma. Everyone recovers at their own pace, so there’s nothing wrong with taking your time.
Healing Starts at Trauma Counseling Center
Trauma Counseling Center of Los Angeles is the leader in trauma recovery. Everyone’s journey with overcoming trauma is unique, and our professionals at Trauma Counseling Center have the experience and compassion to help you learn to understand your pain and move past it. In addition to individual trauma therapy, we also offer services such as:
If you’re ready to take the first step in your journey of healing and get started with individual trauma therapy, then call Trauma Counseling Center today at 310-720-8200. We offer real trauma treatment for real people, so don’t hesitate to call today.