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Trauma is treatable. It doesn't take years to do it.
Effective Trauma Therapy
The Instinctual Trauma Response™ method is an evidence-supported method that focuses on treating the roots of trauma rather than the symptoms. The method was developed by Dr. Lou Tinnin, psychiatrist and Dr. Linda Gantt, art therapist, after over 30 years of clinical experience with people coping with all kinds of trauma. The ITR™ method recodes traumatic memory from the right brain format to the left brain format, ending or greatly reducing triggers and symptoms.
The ITR™ method gives traumatic memories order, verbal coding, historical context, and an objective, third person view that protects the person from re-experiencing the trauma and fosters their capacity for empathy for themselves and others. The client feels the event is finally over and in the past. Many clients say that the ITR™ method radically changed their lives, and therapists often say it’s the only trauma treatment they have seen that really works.
We offer more than hope. We offer healing from trauma.
Dr. Tinnin on Misdiagnosis
Trauma is so prevalent that almost any condition that requires professional help could be rooted in trauma. People diagnosed with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or major depression, have symptoms that can be understood as post traumatic consequences. Patients observed with panic disorder have been post traumatic. The panic states are flashbacks and the condition resolves once the trauma is processed. Anxiety disorder can be caused by multiple childhood traumas. Obesity, addiction, and impulse disorders can be trauma-based, and people can recover from these conditions once their traumas are processed.
Intro to the ITR
Dr. Gantt explains the Instinctual Trauma Response™ method. The body responds to trauma in a predictable way. The symptoms created by traumatic experiences are normal brain responses to abnormal experiences and can mimic mental illness. The ITR™ is different from other treatment methods available today. It is informed by core principles of art therapy, narrative therapy, and part’s therapy. It can be used with 3-year-olds to adults. The troubling symptoms are non-verbal and the ITR™ focuses on these distressing fragments and puts them into a sequence so the person understands the event is over. This is accomplished by creating a Graphic Narrative with a Re-presentation, and doing an Externalized Dialogue for that event. The ITR™ method helps someone finish the story, become “unstuck,” and integrate their memories.
Dr. Tinnin on Meds
Dr. Tinnin talks about how medication can help just enough to keep someone from treating the root cause of their symptoms if they have indeed experienced trauma. Feeling better does not treat trauma, it just helps people cope, and that is not good enough. Trauma is easy to treat, and many people live compromised lives when they don’t have the option to treat the trauma, not just suppress their symptoms.
“Of all the mental health problems, those that are related to trauma are the easiest to heal, and it doesn’t take years to do it.” Dr. Tinnin
What is Trauma?
During ordinary day-to-day events, both sides of your brain process and store what you experience. However, when you have a life-threatening experience or witness another person in such circumstances, your verbal brain can become overwhelmed, and your executive function (the ability to think your way out of the trauma) fails. You can no longer organize your experience in a logical way. The parts of the brain that deals with survival take over. If you cannot fight or flee the situation, you will respond by freezing. This is when the instinctual trauma response occurs.
What is PTSD?
Post-traumatic stress disorder is caused by either experiencing or witnessing a terrifying, life-threatening event. The resulting symptoms can include flashbacks, nightmares, dissociation, internal voices, depression, severe panic or anxiety, and phobias, intrusive thoughts about the event, avoidance, arousal, or intrusive symptoms. Under treatment with the ITR™ method, these symptoms are greatly reduced or completely disappear, along with the body memories associated with the traumas.
What is Dissociation?
Dissociation can take different forms, such as a state of feeling disconnected from one’s surroundings, “being zoned out,” or daydreaming. Dissociation can range from getting lost in thought to a more severe detachment from physical and emotional awareness. According to the American Psychiatric Association, dissociation is “a disruption in the usually integrated functions of consciousness, memory, identity, or perception of the environment.” Dissociation is common for people who have experienced ongoing early childhood traumas. It can be treated effectively with therapy the integrates recoding of the dual brain and integration of the stages of the instinctual trauma response.