Trauma manifests itself in many ways, but above all it is a psychological phenomenon that affects those who have suffered a major physical or psychological shock. Their sources are so varied that there is no one standard cure, so we offer a specialized treatment that focuses on each individual’s personal experience and needs, building on our expertise in this field to offer treatments designed to break through the cycle of shock and trauma.
Camino Recovery works with trauma that is a psychological injury or pain. Its source is most often sudden or unexplained damage or abuse, itself a product of long term tolerance or intolerance of abuses that are defined psychologically as ‘wounds’.
Psychological pain is a very real phenomenon that resides in the mid-brain or limbic system. It most commonly manifests itself in co-morbidity, such as depression or anxiety related issues. As a result, trauma survivors tend to be in an extended state of nervousness, exhibiting a hyper-vigilance in environments that don’t necessarily call for a person to be in a hyper alert state. In many cases they also suffer from an inability to modulate any sense of overwhelm, and put together such strains can take a heavy toll on individuals who are already in a vulnerable state of mind.
Not only that, but due to their anxiety and inability to moderate their reactions to perceived threats they are often prone to instant, uncontrolled reactions that are out of proportion to what can be normal, everyday experiences. This over-reaction or ‘emotional flooding’ in response to stimuli can also be related to unresolved historical events in someone’s life. It is exhibited by a sudden explosion following a build-up of apparently innocuous, little things.
In such cases the real danger is retraumatization, where unresolved issues relating to a person’s trauma history make them prone to events that trigger a re-enaction of their anxieties. It’s a negative cycle that we aim to break indefinitely. Resolution of trauma is often done through what is called ‘cognitive reframing’, whereby you learn to identify and change your perception of the negative issues that haunt you. As they can’t be made to simply disappear in thin air, this is an effective way of overcoming traumas.
Only therapeutic processes used to ‘reframe’ the initial abuse, abandonment or neglect are effective, and at Camino Recovery the clinical team utilizes EMDR, or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, a process developed by Francine Shapiro, PhD. It is a bilateral stimulation that allows the traumas housed in the mid-brain to forward to the Neo-Cortex. This in effect allows for an easier transition to reframing those events that are the trauma-inducing memories, which incapacitate the sufferer.
Camino Recovery offers this sort of ‘non-invasive’ type of therapy because unaddressed trauma is the key contributor to stresses that form the key contributor to relapses and recidivism of unhealthy choices in peoples’ lives. Simply put, resolve the trauma, resolve the problem.