While most people don't like thinking about what happened, talking about it, or even remembering it, understanding how to cope with the aftermath of a traumatic event helps us move forward and deal with the stress that comes with it. Biofeedback therapy for PTSD has shown to be an effective tool when recovering from trauma.
What is Trauma?
Trauma is commonly defined as a response to something profoundly upsetting, frightening, or painful. It is the overwhelming emotional and psychological reaction to a traumatic experience. Symptoms of trauma-based conditions include flashbacks, nightmares, hypervigilance, avoidance, emotional numbing, irritability, and difficulty sleeping.
The term "trauma" describes the psychological effects of exposure to extreme stressors such as:
War and torture
Violence and abuse
Traumatic events can occur during childhood, adolescence, or even adulthood. They can happen repeatedly over a long period of time or sporadically over a short period of time.
Trauma affects everyone differently. Some people become traumatized by one incident while others develop posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after repeated exposure to multiple incidents.
What Types of Traumas are There?
There are three main types of trauma:
Acute trauma – This occurs from a single incident like a car accident or natural disaster.
Chronic trauma – This stems from prolonged verbal or physical abuse, like an abusive relationship or religious persecution.
Complex trauma – This stems from exposure to multiple different traumatic events.
Biofeedback Therapy for PTSD
Biofeedback is an innovative technique used for self-regulation purposes. During treatment, you are connected to electrical sensors that monitor your brain activity, muscle tension, blood pressure, respiration, heartbeat, skin conductivity, and temperature. These signals are fed into a computer where they are displayed graphically on screen and interpreted by a clinician.
With iterative practice, biofeedback allows you to gain greater control over your body functions and efficiencies. For example, you might learn to relax tense muscles, reduce stress levels, increase energy levels, lower blood pressure, or slow down your breathing.
Biofeedback therapy for PTSD helps you learn to control your body's reactions through changes in your thoughts, feelings, or behaviors. With the right treatment plan and clinician at your side, biofeedback can help you greatly when recovering from trauma.
Researchers believe that biofeedback could be effective for treating PTSD because it helps to regulate the body's response to emotionally charged stimuli. For example, people with PTSD tend to respond to triggers—like loud noises or flashing lights—by becoming anxious or angry. By teaching the brain to control these responses, biofeedback can help teach people with PTSD to feel calmer during stressful situations.
When Recovering from Trauma You May Need More than Talk Therapy
While talk therapy provides validation for feelings and helps people understand why they feel certain ways, it doesn’t necessarily change the way they think about themselves or the world around them. That’s another area where biofeedback can come into play. This therapy works by challenging the patient’s thinking patterns and beliefs by focusing on the mental triggers for your trauma. Over time, this therapy helps teach patients how to look at stressful situations differently and encourages them to develop new coping strategies.
Learn How Can Biofeedback for PTSD Help You Today
If you are struggling to recover from trauma, biofeedback therapy for PTSD may be able to help. If you are interested in learning more about how this treatment can help you, contact Braincode Centers today to start your journey and fully recover from your trauma.