Alpha-stim Sessions

Alpha-Stimulation therapy, also known as Cranial Electrotherapy Stimulation (CES), is a non-invasive brain stimulation tool which applies small, non-painful, pulsed, electric currents across a client’s head. Such technology has existed for over 20 years and has been regulated by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) since 1977. It has been used by over 10 million people worldwide and, increasingly, by the U.S. Military over the last 5 years to help treat sufferers of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. The therapy works by clipping two electrodes onto the client’s ears and increasing the amount of alpha waves in the brain. Alpha brain waves are associated with calm/relaxed, but alert, states of being, which help to calm the central nervous system. Alpha-stimulation therapy has been found to be effective in treating pain, anxiety, depression, insomnia, addictions and trauma. It represents a safe alternative to pharmaceutical medication, since there are no side-effects and no risk of chemical addiction.

Balancing Life Project

The Balancing Life Project™ is a reflective, dynamic, interactive tool of self-discovery, emotional awareness, insight and decision-making that helps participants better define and to create the life they want to live for themselves. It helps participants reflect on, weigh and balance their unique needs, wishes and desires regarding their personal, interpersonal and spiritual lives. The BLP paradigm is founded on the integration of multiple theoretical models including: Recovery and Relapse Prevention Theory Learning and Cognitive-Behavioral Theory Trauma and Body-Based Theory Attachment and Psychodynamic Theory Mother-Child and Neuroscience Research The BLP is designed to be introduced during residential treatment and then extended through the transition period into aftercare as a bridge during this critical time. It enables maximum leveraging of the residential experience, through the transition into aftercare, to help consolidate the client’s gains for optimal recovery and relapse prevention.

Cognitive Therapies

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a talking therapy that is usually delivered in one-to-one sessions with a psychotherapist over a number of sessions. During CBT, people identify the patterns of thoughts, feelings and behaviours that reinforce their psychological disorder. They learn specific new strategies for breaking these patterns, and they practise these outside the therapy sessions, often keeping a diary of their experiences. CBT deals mainly with the present, rather than the past, and has a problem-solving style, with the person and their psychotherapist working in collaboration to find new solutions. CBT has been shown to be very effective for depression and anxiety disorders, and there is now good evidence that CBT tailored specifically for substance misuse can be effective treatment for both harmful use and drug or alcohol dependency. Depression and anxiety problems very commonly co-exist with substance misuse, and in such cases a CBT approach can be particularly valuable.

EMDR – Eye Movement Desensitisation & Reprocessing

From psychiatric solutions to performance enhancement EMDR is an acronym for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, an innovative clinical treatment originated and developed by Dr Francine Shapiro in 1987. EMDR was initially used to treat traumatic experiences such as assault, road traffic accidents, war trauma, torture, natural or man-made disasters, sexual abuse and childhood neglect. Nowadays, it is used to treat several other mental health problems. EMDR is a complex method of psychotherapy which integrates many of the successful elements of a range of therapeutic approaches in combination with eye movements or other forms of bilateral stimulation. During EMDR sessions, the client attends to emotionally disturbing material in brief sequential doses, while simultaneously focusing on an external stimulus. EMDR facilitates the accessing of the traumatic memory network and the information is adaptively processed with new associations being made between the disturbing memory and more adaptive memories or information. This leads to more complete information processing, elimination of emotional and physical distress and the development of positive insights. EMDR is a three-pronged approach involving the processing of: 1. Past events that have laid the groundwork for the disorder 2. Present circumstances that elicit distress 3. Future templates dealing with potentially distressing situations in a more adaptive manner EMDR can be used to treat: [/col] [col column=”3″] 1. Depression 2. Anxiety disorders 3. Burnout 4. Alcoholism and other drug addiction 5. Eating disorders 6. Pathological gambling 7. Sex and love addiction 8. Codependency 9. Personality disorders 10. Chronic pain syndrome 11. Bipolar disorder EMDR is also used to enhance performance. Performance enhancement not only works with musicians, actors and athletes but also can be used with individuals who want to live more effectively.

Family Systems Therapy

Family systems therapy is derived from systems theory, which is the study of complex systems in nature, science and society. This theory and approach to treatment attempt to understand the individual client and their problem, within the broader context of the client’s personal environment – i.e. their family’s beliefs, values, and interpersonal interactions. In the past, family systems therapy would simply focus on the immediate “system” of parents and children. However, we are increasingly realizing one’s environment or “system” extends far beyond one’s immediate family, and can include aunts/uncles, grandparents, friends/loved ones, co-workers, jobs in certain industries, social networking/media influences etc. The proponents of family systems therapy believe that, regardless of the client’s problem, involving members of the client’s family system (however many are able and willing to participate) often benefits both the client and their family members themselves. Family systems therapy recognizes and emphasizes the importance of healthy family relationships as an essential part of psychological health for everyone involved. Indeed, clients who seek treatment on their own, without any family involvement, often revert to old, dysfunctional roles and patterns of interaction by unaware family members once they return home. This can often cause the individual to quickly relapse into their old addictions or other unhealthy lifestyles. Family therapy, therefore, is used to explore the interaction between the client and their families, and to deal with any problems in their relationships which may have reinforced the client’s harmful behaviours. Family therapy has been found to be beneficial in the following ways: 1. Creating stronger family unity 2. Deepening understanding and empathy for others 3. Creating healthier and more effective communication 4. Enhancing problem-solving skills 5. Enhancing overall family functioning

Mindfulness Work

Mindfulness work is an essential part of Buddhist practice and involves paying attention, moment-by-moment, without judgment and with acceptance, to everything that is happening both within and around ourselves. The concept and practice of mindful awareness has been around for thousands of years in Eastern cultures. However, it is only recently that Western medicine has started to research and discover the myriad physical and psychological health benefits associated with its practice. Cultivating mindful awareness of one’s body, mind and environment has been found to: 1. Decrease anxiety and rumination 2. Reduce stress 3. Help treat depression 4. Help treat addictive behaviours 5. Reduce blood pressure 6. Reduce both acute and chronic pain 7. Enhance overall physical and psychological well being The benefits associated with mindfulness work are thought to derive from enhancing one’s ability for attention regulation, body awareness and emotional regulation. Furthermore, mindfulness work is thought to expand consciousness, leading to enhanced feelings of well-being and increased physical and psychological health. By practising mindfulness, clients cultivate more awareness of the present moment and learn to become more aware of the presence of negative, dysfunctional thoughts and feelings which are disturbing in nature. Only when a client becomes aware of something can they begin to change and do something about it. Mindful awareness is often the first, big step in recognizing where problems or difficulties lie and how to address them. Such awareness is essential, since so many of us spend the majority of our lives on “automatic pilot” mode, completely unaware of who we are and why we do what we do.

My Brain Solutions

My Brain SolutionsTM is a scientifically-designed software program that targets attention, memory, flexibility, stress-reduction and positivity in a fun, user-friendly way. It functions by first acting as a validated “brain health assessment” device, which utilizes a combination of neuropsychological and psychological testing all performed by a computer. The results of this brain health assessment are then used to create a set of personalized emotional and cognitive “play exercises” which are performed daily for 10-15 minutes by the client. Such play exercises have been specifically designed to help improve brain health and emotional self-regulation by helping clients to cope with stress, to remain positive and to think more clearly. Essentially, it provides the brain with the equivalent of a gym workout and helps improve the brain’s overall fitness, which then allows clients to improve their focus and concentration on other therapies in which they are participating in, as well as on their overall recovery. My Brain SolutionsTM software has been found to be most beneficial in treating addictions, depression and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The following physical and psychological health benefits have been associated with its use: Increased self-regulation skills Increased resiliency Increased social skills Increased awareness Increased attention and concentration Increased ability to manage stress

Positivie Psychology

The positive psychology movement, which began in the late 1990s, arose out of an attempt to correct the imbalance in understanding what factors help individuals and communities to thrive. The adherents of this movement study the conditions and processes that contribute to the flourishing, or optimal functioning, of people, groups and institutions. Positive psychologists believe that by focusing on and exploring strengths, rather than exclusively focusing on weaknesses, people will develop better self-esteem, optimism and a sense of purpose that will not only aid in overcoming the damage of disease, stress, and disorder but, furthermore, will help them to achieve more authentic, meaningful lives. As regards clinical work/therapy from a positive psychology perspective, equal weight is placed on both positive and negative functioning when understanding and treating distress. Commonly, “positive interventions” are used by therapists to help increase positive feelings, positive behaviours and positive thoughts, as opposed to always focusing on negative thoughts and behaviours. Positive psychology is used to complement behaviour-modifying psychotherapies, by enabling clients to develop and strengthen positive emotions. This allows clients to be content with their past and their present, and to have hope for the future. Clients learn to identify and improve their perceptions of themselves and how to improve their relationships with those around them.

Satori Chair Sessions

The Satori Chair is a zero-gravity lounge chair which gently delivers specific vibrational frequencies throughout the body, thereby balancing our bodies’ energy centres. It does this by combining vibrational frequencies with Quantum Harmonics sound and music delivered through state of the art headphones. Experiencing this combination of vibration and sounds guides one’s body and brain waves to deep levels of relaxation and meditative states. It is during such deep states of relaxation and meditation that real mind/body rejuvenation occurs. There is increasing scientific evidence to demonstrate that music/sounds have a profound effect on our mind and body. Sound and music therapy is increasingly used to help treat cancer patients, people with ADHD, people recovering from addictions and anyone interested in reducing stress and increasing calm in their lives. The U.S. military recently began using the Satori Chair to help combat troops returning from the front lines to more quickly self-regulate their minds and bodies in order to reduce the likelihood of developing debilitating depression, anxiety and/or trauma. Satori Chair sessions are similar to neuro-feedback in terms of their impact on the mind and body, utilising a combination of guided imagery and visualisation, with stimulation of the body and mind through vibrational senses.

Somatic Experiencing

Somatic experiencing is used to relieve the symptoms of mental and physical disorders by focusing on the client’s perceived body sensations (or somatic experiences). Somatic experiencing is a form of Trauma Therapy that was originally developed by Dr. Peter Levine in 1997. It is based on his observations of how animals in the wild react to and recover from life-threatening situations. From this perspective, trauma symptoms are a dysregulation of one’s autnonomic nervous system. Under “normal” circumstances, our autonomic nervous system helps to regulate many areas of our bodies’ functioning. However, following a traumatic incident, our bodies often become stuck in a trauma reaction mode in which the body is unable to regulate itself and restore normal, healthy bodily functions. Dr. Levine noticed how, in the wild, animals are able to “reset” their autonomic nervous system by discharging the excess trauma energy – once they are safe from the threat – through shaking, trembling or deep spontaneous breaths. Somatic experiencing works in a similar fashion by helping one’s body to discharge excess/stuck traumatic energy and to restore our body’s ability to self-regulate. This approach to working with trauma does not involve talking about the traumatic event but, instead, works by educating individuals on how their body regulates stress and teaching them how to track related physical sensations/feelings/thoughts connected with the traumatic experience. It helps clients to recognise the existence of physical tension that remains in the body after a traumatic episode and to facilitate the release of such tension, which otherwise can reinforce addictive behaviour and physiological disorders of all kinds.

Trance Work/clinical Hypnotherapy

Trance work/clinical hypnotherapy is a tool used by certain, trained therapists to help clients access subconscious thoughts, feelings and emotions which often keep people stuck in harmful or destructive behaviours, or ways of being. Hypnosis is, simply speaking, an altered state of consciousness—one that is defined by a very pleasant state of relaxation, which can be used by a trained therapist to communicate directly with the subconscious part of our minds, helping to motivate and drive meaningful change from deep within our self. Hypnotherapy uses guided relaxation, intense concentration and focused attention to create a heightened state of awareness, sometimes referred to as a “trance”. When in this trance state, a client’s attention is so focused that they are often unaware of anything else going on around them and they are completely focused on the words or tasks being directed by the therapist. This very relaxed, but present, state of mind permits people to explore difficult thoughts, feelings or memories which are otherwise hidden from the conscious mind. It can be used in two ways: suggestion therapy or analysis. Suggestion therapy utilizes the trance state to help people respond more fully and effectively to suggestions made by the therapist, such as changing certain problematic behaviours (e.g. smoking or nail-biting) and helping people to alter their perceptions or sensations when dealing with issues such as pain management. Hypnotherapy, in the context of analysis, utilizes the very relaxed, trance-like state to explore past traumas and other root causes of psychological distress, which have been hidden or buried in one’s unconscious. Once this unconscious or traumatic memory is revealed, it can be further addressed and resolved in psychotherapy. Hypnotherapy is not dangerous and it does not involve mind control or brain washing. The therapist cannot make the person being hypnotized do something that the person does not want to do. Hypnotherapy has been found to be very helpful in the treatment of the following: Anxiety Depression Addictions and other behavioural problems Phobias Insomnia and other sleep disorders Stress Grief and loss Pain management Post-traumatic Anxiety

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain, in order to improve symptoms of depression. It works by placing an electromagnet over a small area of the scalp/brain, which is known to regulate mood, and then stimulates this area of the brain by inducing an electrical current and resulting action potentials, in specific nerve cells within this brain region. The electromagnetic pulses pass easily and painlessly through the skull and into the brain. A typical session lasts under an hour and involves repeated pulses. When these pulses are administered in rapid succession, it is referred to as repetitive TMS or (RTMS), which can produce longer, lasting changes in brain activity. This treatment approach is very different from electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), in which an electrical current is actually delivered throughout the brain. RTMS is still a fairly new form of treatment for depression, however scientists believe that magnetic stimulation can reset brain wave frequencies to normal levels, thereby improving symptoms of depression. This form of treatment is usually recommended only after medication and psychotherapies have failed to work for an individual.

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