Trauma treatment can be a significant component of addiction recovery. Because traumatic experiences from the past may lead to drug use now, it’s essential to deal with these issues. Somatic therapy is one approach a good-quality rehab facility will offer. What is it?
Who Can Benefit from Somatic Therapy?
Trauma can affect anyone. It’s common for members of the military who went through active deployment. Another group of professionals that encounters traumatic experiences includes first responders. However, you don’t have to go to these extremes.
Everyday people may live through or witness traumatic situations. You may have survived a sexual assault. As a child, you may have seen an event you couldn’t process. As a result, you’re dealing with the trauma to this day.
How Trauma Ties in with Substance Abuse
In many cases, people use a drug or alcohol to escape from the reality of the experience. Nervous system depressants such as alcohol or opioids are common choices. You try to numb yourself to re-living feelings. Maybe you’re dealing with flashbacks that you want to keep away.
When you self-medicate with a drug, you manage to quiet intrusive thoughts. Maybe you get to a twilight stage of being in and out of consciousness. It protects you from having to deal with feelings. At some point, you develop an addiction to the drug you’re using.
Now, you have two problems. You have an unresolved situation from the past. Moreover, you have a chemical dependency. Along with this addiction come psychological and physiological symptoms.
How Somatic Therapy Can Help You
Excellent rehab facilities will offer evidence-based treatment methods for program participants. Examples include trauma therapy and psychotherapy. But there are several different approaches you might take. Somatic therapy is one option.
The goal is to help you focus on the physiological tension that exists because of the trauma you experienced. By working with a therapist who breaks down the situation into vignettes, you track your physical reactions. You journal how your body feels. Next, you work with the expert to find ways of relieving the particular stress you feel at each moment.
Over the course of the sessions, your body memory will automatically deal with the stress you feel. You’re then ready to tackle the next vignette of the experience. You eventually recount the entire experience without suffering from the intense physical effects you used to live through. It’s a good idea to combine the treatment with a holistic approach that might include:
- Nutrition counseling to help your body overcome symptoms of stress
- Hypnotherapy as a means for maintaining your focus on getting well and relaxing
- Art therapy, which offers an additional method for achieving introspection
- Meditation to facilitate mindfulness training and breathing exercises
- Yoga, which combines breathing techniques with guided movements for loosening tense muscles
Why Can’t I Just Get Over the Trauma?
What makes trauma treatment so tricky is the fact that everyone has a different definition of the event. What you consider a normal, albeit unpleasant, situation can be traumatic for someone else. Because there’s no uniform definition, seeking help outside of rehab is difficult for most people. In fact, many program participants don’t realize that trauma is at the root of their addiction problems.
It’s virtually impossible to pull yourself up by your bootstraps and overcome this type of experience without help. It left such a profound impression on you that you’re coping skills were unable to manage. You need help. When you have an addiction as well, you need assistance with overcoming both at the same time using methods like trauma therapy, group therapy, family therapy, and others.
Quit using today. Overcome your trauma. Experts at Ocean Recovery practice somatic therapy and can help you. Call 800-641-2388 today to schedule an appointment.