What is Somatic Focused Therapy?

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What is Somatic Focused Therapy?

Somatic focused therapy is a type of psychotherapy that uses physical touch as the means to heal and address mental health issues. It can be an effective alternative to talk therapy, helping address issues like PTSD and anxiety.

This approach utilizes the body and its memory of trauma to reduce chronic stress and anxiety through physiological change, discharging trauma stored in the autonomic nervous system. Additionally, this approach may improve symptoms associated with chronic pain and autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis.

Somatic focused therapy utilizes touch and movement to help clients explore their feelings and emotions fully, in the present. These techniques have the potential for decreasing anxiety levels while simultaneously relaxing both mind and body – especially when combined with talk therapy.

Different forms of somatic therapy exist. Some draw from neuroscience and the physiology of how the brain functions, while others assert that physical sensations can provide insight into one’s thoughts and emotions.

Somatic focused therapy employs the practice of titration and pendulation, which involves gradually revisiting past trauma in small doses. This allows the body to build resilience while releasing stuck energy in an incremental fashion – often under supervision from a therapist. Signs that someone may begin this process include clenched hands, changes in breathing pattern or shifts in voice tone as they reflect upon the traumatic experience.

This process is often used in combination with other therapy approaches, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). This “bottom up” approach to therapy rather than working from the top down like CBT takes, can be beneficial for clients who have had trouble finding relief from symptoms from traditional therapies.

Clients can explore their experiences without judgment and learn new ways of responding to triggers, which is especially helpful for those suffering from PTSD who struggle to express their emotions in formal therapy sessions.

Once clients understand how their bodies can alert them of unconscious beliefs and fears, they can work with a therapist to safely release these thoughts and beliefs. This helps the client heal on a deeper level than through traditional talk therapy alone.

Somatic therapy operates on the principle that our bodies contain valuable information about past experiences, which can be utilized to supplement or replace traditional talk therapy methods. Many individuals suffering from various ailments find somatic therapy beneficial in managing symptoms and relieving pain.

Practitioners of somatic therapy are typically trained in various methods such as Somatic Experiencing (SE), body-centered therapy, EMDR, Hakomi and meditation. Although there isn’t enough scientific proof to back up its effectiveness fully yet, many have reported great healing benefits from the experience.

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- Welcome, SoundTherapy.com lowers anxiety 86%, pain 77%, and boosts memory 11-29%. Click on the brain to sign up or share with buttons below to help others: