Trauma is a common experience that affects millions of people around the world. It can be caused by a variety of events, such as natural disasters, accidents, or violence. Trauma can have a lasting impact on a person's mental health and wellbeing, and it is important to seek treatment to help manage the symptoms. There are several different types of therapy available to help people recover from trauma, including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy (TF-CBT), eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), psychotherapy, cognitive processing therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, and brief and eclectic psychotherapy.
CBT is a type of talk therapy that focuses on recognizing and changing problematic thought patterns and behaviors. It requires weekly appointments to learn skills that can be used to control symptoms. Standard CBT usually takes 12 to 16 weeks. TF-CBT is designed for children and adolescents and works to improve a variety of trauma-related outcomes in children.
It lasts between 8 and 25 sessions and involves both the child and a trusted caregiver or adult. TF-CBT is one of the most effective trauma therapy methods available to help young people recover from PTSD. It also addresses other trauma-related challenges, such as anxiety, depression, and behavioral problems. EMDR is different from most talk therapies in that it does not require a person to explain their trauma in detail.
Instead, the person will make eye movements or touch with their eyes while focusing on an image related to the trauma. EMDR helps a person “unwind” so their brain can go through its natural healing process. It is designed to help a person quickly resolve traumatic memories and does not focus on changing trauma-related emotions, thoughts, or behaviors. Often, EMDR therapy can be completed in far fewer sessions than other talk therapies.
Psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy, provides patients with an opportunity to talk about their trauma and advance the healing process. Cognitive behavioral therapy helps patients identify behaviors and attitudes that reflect negatively on their lives and work to replace these negative attitudes with positive ones. Cognitive processing therapy helps teach patients new and more positive ways to address trauma-related beliefs and emotions. Dialectical behavior therapy aims to better regulate emotions and has been effective in helping those who have thoughts of suicide.
Brief and eclectic psychotherapy combines elements of cognitive behavioral therapy with a psychodynamic approach and focuses on changing emotions of shame and guilt.If you have suffered any type of trauma and want to seek treatment, find a therapist, psychologist, or psychiatrist who specializes in one of these forms of therapy. Even scientifically supported treatments don't work for everyone, so carefully monitoring your progress will help you decide if a different approach should be tried.