PTSD – Why my treatments are different.
I often get asked why should I be so different when it comes to treating Psychological Trauma and PTSD. It’s a valid question that certainly deserves an answer. I couldn’t and wouldn’t expect anyone to come to me with this issue without knowing that I have a great deal of success in this area.
Firstly, as you probably already realise if you’ve read my other post on the subject, I have personal experience, having dealt with my own psycholigical trauma symptoms in the past. It gives me a valuable understanding into just what it is like to have these sorts of symptoms. That coupled with the fact I have served a full career in the Army enables me to have a certain empathy with anyone suffering with psychological trauma, both military and civilian. I suppose any client is far more ready to open up to someone that has experienced it and I have certainly found this to be the case, especially with serving or ex service personnel. Of course, having this empathy is not a pre-requisite for any therapist wishing to specialise in this area. As an example, I know of one therapist that specialises in and has a great deal of success with natural childbirth. But, he is a male, therefore, never going to have the experience of childbirth himself. Yet he is highly successful! Having this empathy though is a definite advantage.
Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, my ability to diversify is a profound advantage. Time and again, I come across therapists or organisations who only have the ability to address the issue with one or perhaps two interventions at most. One particularly well known charity in this country will only use Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) or dirivitives thereof, or Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) protocols. I think they feel they cannot offer anything other than that which the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) approves of. Personally I find this to be an extremely blinkered approach. If we are not willing to try other things, how do we progress and learn? I’m not saying that CBT and EMDR are ineffective, far from it. But, what I am saying is that as we are all different, these interventions will only work with a set amount of individuals. Good for the people it does work on, but what do we do with the rest? Tell them they can’t be helped? Now, anyone coming to me to address this issue will have a number of options. CBT and EMDR type protocols certainly but they are also able to draw on other interventions like Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP), Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), Gestalt Therapy and Hypnosis, all of which have shown efficacy in this area.
It is my ability to use any and all of these techniques, willingness to mix and match them and tailor the therapy to the individual that is, in my opinion, at the heart of the success I have with Psychological Trauma and PTSD. As I have said before, we are all different, ergo we respond to different things. I feel, therefore, it is paramount in the interests of the individual to USE WHAT WORKS!