Post-traumatic Stress Disorder is a subtype of the anxiety disorders that develops when a person has been exposed to a traumatic/terrifying event – either experiencing it or witnessing it.
While it is very normal to have difficulty adjusting and coping after a terrifying event (a car accident, perhaps), most people usually get better with time and self-care. However, for some, especially those who have been exposed to repeated traumatic events (soldiers, first responders, sexual or physical abuse survivors, etc.), PTSD may develop. PTSD lasts for months or even years after the trauma, and it interferes with your daily functioning.
PTSD causes changes in the limbic system in the brain causing hyper-arousal. Neurofeedback trains the brain to regulate the overworked stress response which leads to increased physical and mental calmness. Neurofeedback helps the brain relax while helping to process normal sensory information as nonthreatening. Additionally, clients have reported being able to make sense of their traumatic experience without re-experiencing the limbic “fight, flight, or freeze” response. This allows the traumatic event to be placed in the past rather than continuing to respond as if it is happening in the present.
Bloomington Neurofeedback offers a safe, caring environment in which to find healing through talk therapy that includes interventions such as Cognitive Behavioral and Exposure Therapy.
Another highly recommended, evidence-based treatment for PTSD is Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). EMDR uses eye movements or bilateral stimulations (gentle buzzers placed in each hand) to help put the trauma in the past. While Bloomington Neurofeedback does not offer EMDR, we can help you find a practitioner who is skilled in EMDR and work with them for continuity of care.