Somatic therapy is going to be a unique therapy experience that allows you to incorporate the mind, body, and even spirit in some of the healing that you need to do. It is going to be more of a body-centric approach that will help reconnect the mind and body to treat many common mental health conditions.
There are a wide variety of benefits for those who choose to utilize somatic therapy. Many patients who are dealing with mental health conditions and trauma will find that somatic therapy can provide them with some of the relief that they need. It is especially good for patients who suffer from PTSD. Some of the benefits of using somatic therapy include:
Develop Bodily Awareness
Somatic therapy is going to work to help the patient be more aware of their body and mind. Traditional talk therapy will help the patient work through emotional and mental issues, but somatic therapy will help to target some of the trauma that tends to get stored away in the nervous system.
Many techniques can be used in somatic therapy including:
- Grounding: This is a technique that asks you to anchor yourself in the here and now. If you happen to suffer from flashbacks or anxiety, you can use grounding to help put you back in the present and reduce symptoms. It is as simple as tensing and relaxing different parts of the body or running water over your hand.
- Resourcing and visualization: When you have a distressing feeling or thought, you may find that visualization will help relieve the issue and make you feel safe. You can work with the therapist to figure out the right image to use during this time.
- Body scan: This option will help you to take stock of your body and figure out where you tend to feel pain or carry tension so that you can release it faster than before.
You and your therapist will be able to try out a few of these techniques to see which one will help you the most.
Transform and Release the Trauma
Somatic therapy is a great option to use for many conditions but seems to be extremely effective in helping patients with PTSD manage their symptoms by reconnecting with their bodies. For many who suffer from PTSD, this can be difficult as they handle their experiences with physical trauma.
Somatic therapy is going to aim to transform some of the dysregulations back into regulation by working on the idea that much of the trauma we feel is stored inside the body. It will help to bring more awareness to the body and how it is responding to trauma, focusing on how your reactions and even thoughts will affect it.
When you and your therapist can bring more awareness to the trauma in the body, you will be able to learn the tools that will help you release it for good. Several techniques can be used here, such as mindfulness, meditation, yoga, and more.
Build the Tools for Self-Improvement
Trauma can be a dangerous thing because it is going to hold us back from the happy lives that we deserve to live. When we utilize somatic therapy, we can gain the tools needed to improve mental health and remove some of the blocks that often keep us from reaching our full potential.
Through the techniques used in somatic therapy, we will learn how to better recognize the way our body feels and can often pinpoint where our unprocessed emotions will lie. This type of therapy will also provide us with the tools to deal with them. Resourcing and grounding can help with this and are techniques that we can use at home whenever we need them.
Release the Tension
Somatic therapy is going to help the patient release some of the tension that is stored in their body due to trauma. Some of the mindfulness exercises that are used will help with this, bringing more awareness to the body and allowing the patient to pinpoint some of the areas that bring them pain or tension.
Those who have experienced some trauma in the past could suffer from a condition known as emotional dysregulation which will cause tension in the body. This could include the freeze response, which is kind of the opposite of the fight or flight response. When the patient feels threatened, they will freeze.
Since the brain will not be able to tell that the patient is no longer in a state of danger, they could have various symptoms that linger on, such as difficulty moving, detachment, and confusion. Somatic therapy will help to reset and recondition the nervous system to recognize that a threat is not present.
Treat the Symptoms Effectively
Somatic therapy, while effective for those who are suffering from PTSD, can help with a lot of other conditions as well. Some of the other conditions that may see relief from somatic therapy will include:
- Chronic pain
- Substance use disorders
As this therapy is going to help the patient to focus on some of their bodily sensations and how to regulate the emotional system, it is going to help the patient learn better thinking patterns while also rewiring the brain and making a more productive balance.
This therapy is wonderful for helping the patient have a better awareness of their internal experiences, including their emotions and the sensations around them. They can work with their therapist to learn how their bodies will process trauma and then gain the tools to help them release it.
Choosing Somatic Therapy for Your Healing
There are a lot of benefits to choosing somatic therapy to provide the healing and relief you need. Even if you have tried other therapy methods in the past, you may find that somatic therapy is the key to actually getting them to work. Take a look at some of the benefits of somatic therapy above to see if it is right for you.