We all have a brush with trauma at some point in our lives. Whether it is a shock trauma like a fall from a ladder or a car accident, or if it is more along the lines of attachment issues from family dysfunction or childhood sexual abuse, trauma can wreak havoc on your body, your emotions, your mental state, and your life. Somatic Experiencing, created by Dr. Peter A. Levine, is a body-centered approach to the healing of trauma and other stress disorders.
Many of the trauma symptoms we experience stem from thwarted or incomplete defensive responses that alter the way our bodies function and our brains process information. By gently and slowly addressing the fight, flight, and freeze responses that arise attendant to many traumas, we allow the body to complete these self-protective actions and release the energy and nervous system patterns that have been held in our systems.
Just some of the areas we can address with SE:
Surgeries (preparation for upcoming surgeries or healing from past surgical traumas)
Inescapable attacks (Sexual assault, physical assault/abuse, kidnapping)
Loss of loved ones, grieving
Chronic Stress and Overwhelm
Common signs and symptoms of unresolved trauma:
Shock, being startled easily, being 'jumpy' or hypervigilant
Denial and disbelief
Changes in mental abilities, such as confusion or difficulty concentrating
Anxiety and unexplainable fear
Irritability and being quick to anger
Lethargy, depression, lack of motivation, fatigue
Overwhelming sense of guilt or shame
Feeling hopeless or despondent
Dissociation, feeling disconnected, empty, or numb
Insomnia, nightmares or night terrors
Headaches, stomach aches, autoimmune disorders
Dizziness, vertigo, balance issues
*If you're already in therapy, that's great! I often work with clients' therapists to help with the body-centered piece, which can beautifully complement the work you're already doing in therapy.