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You can’t talk about addiction without talking about trauma. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 75% of people in substance use treatment report histories of abuse and trauma. Additionally, 12-34% of individuals in substance use treatment have PTSD. Therefore, any successful treatment of addiction must address any underlying trauma.

Trauma is notoriously difficult to treat through traditional talk therapy because, while the mind may understand that the threat is over, the body often remains stuck in fight or flight mode. This leads some people to turn to such as using drugs or alcohol to cope. Fortunately, there are some well-known, evidence-based treatments for trauma, and we are thrilled to bring the most cutting-edge and effective treatments to FOY Wellness and Recovery, an intensive-outpatient program for substance use and mental health located in Agoura Hills, CA.

One such modality, Brainspotting, helps clients process and resolve their trauma by accessing the subcortical brain through the visual field. A specially-trained clinician helps the client find the “brainspot” related to whatever they are working on that day. Then the client focuses on this spot in the visual field while listening to bio-lateral music, to activate both the left and right hemispheres of the brain. This facilitates making new and better connections for emotional balance. Next, the client engages in a period of focused mindfulness. Clients often describe it as feeling like “nothing is going on,” but later report tremendous breakthroughs in their experience of trauma.

While Brainspotting is effective for trauma and PTSD, it has also been used successfully in athletes looking to improve their performance– or anyone looking to improve themselves. If you are looking for help recovering from trauma, PTSD, or substance use, please reach out to us today.