Fear & Trauma
"When people suffer psychological trauma, they painfully experience things that until then they thought were impossible in their world. They lose the ground under their feet, their trust in the world and in themselves, and sometimes even their language." (Ottomeyer/Peltzer 2002:7)
You have experienced something terrible and threatening and since then you feel insecure, anxious, have difficulty concentrating, can hardly sleep and images of this terrible experience keep coming up?
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a reaction to a traumatic experience. Traumatic events are extremely threatening or terrifying situations that threaten the life and/or safety of oneself or others and cause deep distress in almost everyone. PTSD can cause symptoms immediately after a trauma or delayed (after weeks, months or years), such as concentration problems, nervousness, anxiety, jumpiness, flashbacks, nightmares, irritability, and many more.
Many relatively mentally healthy people have had experiences in the course of their lives that their brain has not processed optimally. For example, one may have been humiliated by a teacher and not been able to process this properly. 20 years later, you may have a supervisor in your job who somehow reminds you of the teacher from back then. It can therefore happen that you unconsciously feel like the helpless pupil and react less competently than usual.
EMDR is also an excellent way to "after-treat" psychological wounds, which can lead to a reduction in general stress levels in everyday life and an increase in well-being.
In addition to EMDR, I have also intensively studied the ImTT method. This has proven to be even more effective in trauma treatment and particularly gentle for the patient, as I have been able to observe in my practice on a daily basis for several years now.
How I can help
Treatment with EMDR can be extremely helpful here by making it clear to the brain that the bad situation is now over. The stressful events can be integrated into one's own life story. Often, after only a few sessions, there is a considerable improvement, up to the complete disappearance of the symptoms.
ImTT, on the other hand, relies on an imagination exercise that involves the entire body. This method enables the patient to process the experience on a physical level as well.
In many cases, depending on the individual symptoms, I combine the two methods and achieve impressive results.
Anxiety, panic attacks
No one is completely free of fear, but in some people fear takes on an exaggerated dimension. Then one speaks of a Anxiety disorder. Although there is no threat, the person affected reacts as if they were in great danger. In the long run, this leads to extreme psychological stress and the quality of life suffers enormously.
At Phobias is the term used to describe fears caused by specific but harmless triggers, such as agoraphobia, claustrophobia, social phobias, test anxiety, fear of certain situations (for example, the dentist, injections) and fear of flying. In the absence of treatment, the disorder often becomes chronic, leading to social withdrawal and abuse of medication or alcohol. Also Obsessive-compulsive disorders can arise to bring the fear under emotional control.
How can I help
The ImTT method has proven to be extremely effective in treating anxiety in practice. In just 1-2 sessions it is often possible to permanently reduce about 70% of the anxiety. To cure the remaining 30%, it can take a little longer. Here, a body-based imagination exercise is used to release the anxiety from the body.
An often helpful combination is the use of EMDR. Together we look for the first event that triggered this anxiety. In most cases, frightening, threatening events lie behind an anxiety disorder. Using EMDR, these events can be "processed" afterwards, changing and neutralising the perception of situations that were frightening before the treatment. I also treat obsessive-compulsive disorders in a similar way.