Healing Modalities for body, mind, and spirit
Our mental health providers use a blend of traditional and holistic forms of trauma interventions in our practice. We are trained in or currently receiving training and supervision in a variety of traditional forms of evidence-based counseling practices such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), and Internal Family Systems (IFS). These therapies have been researched and written about in professional journals such as the Journal of Traumatic Stress Disorders & Treatment or the Journal of Mental Health Counseling. These therapies have been shown to target specific symptoms related to trauma and to alleviate them.
We use these models because there is strong evidence regarding their benefits and also because we have seen people’s life change dramatically as a result of using these therapy methods.
Holistic healing is characterized by the treatment of the whole person, taking into account mental, emotional, physical, energetic, social, and spiritual dimensions of a person’s life, rather than just the symptoms of a disease. At Somatic Solutions Counseling, we believe that holistic modalities such as mindfulness, yoga, dance, massage, and energy healing are effective additions to the counseling process; which is why we are proud to announce that we have officially launched our partnership with Sacred Fields Healing; a group of holistic healing professionals who share our office building and our vision of body-oriented trauma recovery.
The holistic professionals at Sacred Fields Healing are diverse in their training and depth of knowledge related to complementary and alternative healing modalities shown to support trauma recovery and encourage forward-facing wellness habits that will last well beyond your time in mental health counseling.
Sacred Fields Healing professionals offer trauma-informed massage, yoga, dance, mindfulness courses, and even self-defense. By partnering with Sacred Fields Healing we intend to offer our clients a variety of experiences and many choices on the road to recovery.
Ask your mental health clinician about how to contact Sacred Fields Healing or go to https://www.vagaro.com/sacredfieldshealing for more information.
Somatic or body-based techniques help the mind and the body process trauma. In fact, the Psychotherapy and Counselling Journal of Australia found that body-based therapies could help a range of people.
The work of Peter Levine, Bessel van der Kolk, Judith Herman, Janae Fischer, Steve Hoskinson, Aline Lapierre, and so many more are changing the face of trauma healing. Also, the National Institute of Health has a section of research for Alternative and complimentary Medicine.
Our providers are trained or currently receiving training in a variety of body-based modalities. Each provider has their own training experience. Learn more HERE.
Other thoughts about what helps heal trauma:
Apps and wearables for mental health:
Technological developments in mental health represent an exciting new frontier for people struggling with mental health symptoms such as anxiety, addiction, bipolar disorder, depression, and even trauma. Read more about mental health apps and wearable technology below:
Apps — are a type of software that can be installed and run on a computer, tablet, smartphone or other electronic devices. There is a plethora of free or low-cost apps available for tracking mood, managing anxiety, relieving depression, and reducing stress and trauma reactions. Apps make it easy for people to have access to information, guided support, journaling exercises, mood logs, etc. We encourage clients to research apps that might be valuable for their current mental health symptoms. See the following websites that our clients have found beneficial or Google mental health apps to find even more information about mental health apps.
- The ichill app — https://www.traumaresourceinstitute.com/ichill
- Apps for PTSD – https://www.ptsd.va.gov/appvid/mobile/index.asp
- Sleep Restore: https://sleeprestoreapp.com/
- Curable for chronic pain: https://www.curablehealth.com/
Wearable stress management technology — are miniaturized and unobtrusive sensors that can be worn on the head, wrist, waist, skin, or clothes. Wearables can help people attuned to their physiological stress response as they are occurring in real time. Noticing a stress reaction in real time allows people to take action and return to natural baseline. Additionally, wearables have been shown to reduce stress, improve sleep, and train the brain for improved focus.
Because I focus on the body and believe the body has a story to tell, we have been researching and will be incorporating various types of wearables or bio/neuro feedback devices into our sessions. We also recommend that people purchase their own wearable device if it is in their budget to do so. See information below about wearables I have researched and may introduce into our somatic sessions.
- Inner Balance – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-P-8MMCaAU
- Mendi — see video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSSXoApqx2E
- Sensate — read more here: https://www.getsensate.com/
- TouchPoints – https://thetouchpointsolution.com/
Trauma can activate the nervous system’s fight-or-flight response. Exercise has been shown to mitigate the effects of the stress hormones pumped through the body during a traumatic stress response. Research suggests that 30 minutes a day of aerobic exercise may be an effective therapy for people with trauma histories. Things you can do are:
- Go to the gym
- Yoga or Tai Chi
Mindfulness-based practices are inherently healing, can be practiced at any time, and can ground people in the present, which can stop them from reliving the traumatic event of the past. Studies suggest that mindfulness-based treatments are a promising intervention for PTSD, whether alone or in conjunction with other treatments. Everything we do in our work together is about mindfulness. We encourage people to look into:
- Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction
- Mindfulness Self-Compassion
- Trauma Sensitive Mindfulness
A balanced lifestyle
A person with trauma may find it difficult to relax or to sleep well. However, sleep, relaxation, and diet all play a role in mental health. If possible, a person would benefit from trying to:
- sleep for 7–9 hours a night
- eat a balanced diet
- avoid alcohol and drugs
- relieve stress with mindful or enjoyable activities
- Reading The Power of When to learn more about sleep styles
Practicing self-care can help individuals to cope with the emotional, psychological, and physical symptoms of trauma. Examples of self-care for trauma include:
- Time in nature
- Watching movies
- Listening to music
- Playing an instrument
- Singing, poetry, spoken word
- Art, crafts, hobbies
- Time with friends
Withdrawal from others is a common symptom of trauma. According the polyvagal theory, connecting with friends is valuable in healing trauma. Engaging with others can improve mood and well-being. Some people feel a benefit from disclosing the trauma with people they trust, but that is not necessary. People can ask for support from others, this includes talking to:
- Trusted loved ones
- Members of a support group
- Peer recovery coaches
- Meet-up groups
- Social media groups
Medication and Alternatives
Some of my clients ask me for referrals to psychiatrists or prescribing nurse practitioners because they are seeking support through pharmaceutical medication. Other clients are interested in learning more about herbs, supplements, essential oils, hormone replacement, homeopathic remedies, and even dietary changes. Our providers are happy to support you in finding the right fit for you. However, because we are not medical professionals, nutritionists, herbalists, etc. We are unable to make claims as to the efficacy of any of these modalities.
What we can do is support you in finding a local practitioner who can educate, support, and guide you this part of your journey. We can also work collaboratively with your complimentarily or alternative provider to support you in the best way.