PTSD Treatment Options
Here's the bad news first: PTSD sucks. The good news: PTSD is a highly treatable condition.
If you're at a point where you are considering therapy, it's probably safe to bet you're struggling day to day. I'm also willing to bet that you'd like to know something is available to help you and give you some relief. The treatments I offer are evidence-based and shown to be effective. Please know that help is available.
You got this. I know you do.
PROLONGED EXPOSURE THERAPY (PE)
PE is a one-on-one treatment for PTSD. A course of PE lasts 10 weeks, 90 minutes each session. It has been widely researched and it is a front-line treatment for PTSD. During a course of PE, you will learn how to gradually approach traumatic memories as well as things in your life you may be avoiding. Approaching, instead of avoiding, will greatly reduce your PTSD-related symptoms and improve your day-to-day living. PE may be a good fit if you spend a lot of time avoiding people, places, things, or dealing with painful memories. It's also helpful if you spend a lot of time being on high-alert, hyper-vigilant, or feeling fearful in situations where you once felt comfortable.
COGNITIVE PROCESSING THERAPY (CPT)
CPT is a one-on-one treatment for PTSD. A course of CPT lasts 12 weeks, 60 minutes each session. This is a therapy that has been widely researched and is considered a front-line treatment for PTSD due to its effectiveness. During a course of CPT, you will examine the impact your trauma history has had on your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. You will learn to evaluate places in your thinking where you've gotten stuck, and in turn, be able to shift how you feel and behave. CPT can be particularly helpful if you struggle a lot with self-blame, shame, and guilt.
COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY FOR DEPRESSION (CBT-D):
Do you know that a history of trauma leads more often to depression than PTSD? It’s true. If depression is primarily how you’re presently affected by trauma, CBT-D can be helpful. CBT-D is a one-on-one treatment for depression. We will meet for anywhere between 5-20 sessions. During a course of CBT-D, you will examine thought patterns. Doing so will help you to identify and correct problematic thoughts and develop positive feelings and behaviors.
DIALECTICAL-BEHAVIORAL THERAPY SKILLS (DBT-SKILLS):
I teach DBT skills to groups with up to 8 members. We will meet weekly for 75 minutes each week. DBT is a cognitive behavioral therapy that teaches new skills and strategies in the areas of:
Mindfulness: the practice of being fully aware and present in this one moment
Distress Tolerance: how to tolerate pain in difficult situations, not change it
Interpersonal Effectiveness: how to ask for what you want and say no while maintaining self-respect and relationships with others
Emotion Regulation: how to change emotions that you want to change
While DBT skills are not a specific treatment for PTSD, they can be a great adjunctive treatment. PTSD can often undermine your ability to have or use the skills outlined above in your daily life, and this group provides an opportunity to build up your skillset as you overcome PTSD related symptoms.