Developmental Trauma: Part 1 - LENS, EMDR and Somatic Psychotherapy with Ulrich F. Lanius, Ph.D

Part 1 – The Brain

Developmental Trauma is often challenging to treat and the use of a single therapeutic modality is often insufficient to achieve symptom remission. It is suggested that integrating LENS with more traditional trauma treatment interventions yields promise for enhancing treatment outcomes. The use of LENS Neurofeedback and its integration with EMDR and Somatic Psychotherapy is discussed.

LENS is unique in the field of neurofeedback in that it applies the concept of neural regulation not only to the brain but also to the body, reflecting both Top-down and Bottom-up interventions. Such an integrated body-mind approach dovetails uniquely with other information processing interventions. On that basis it is suggested that LENS is ideally suited as either an adjunctive intervention for individuals with a history of developmental trauma who routinely exhibit disorganized and dysregulated neural activity that interferes with effective psychotherapeutic interventions. Part 1 will focus on Top-down interventions, e.g. LENS neurofeedback to the scalp.

Approaches unique to the LENS, like the notion of EEG suppression that is specifically relevant to developmental trauma are discussed, as well as adaptations of LENS to this population that include interventions drawn from integrating the neuroscience literature, traditional neurofeedback and clinical observations.

Case studies are presented to demonstrate the integration of LENS neurofeedback and associated neural regulation approaches into standard trauma treatment interventions. Particularly, emphasis will be placed on how such interventions can be interwoven and integrated with more traditional trauma treatment interventions, such as Ego-State Therapy, EMDR and Somatic Psychotherapy. It is proposed that the addition of LENS neurofeedback during all three trauma treatment phases (stabilization phase, trauma processing, re-integration) can assist in increasing therapeutic response by directly intervening at the level of the electrical or frequency domain of brain function.

Ulrich F. Lanius, Ph.D., R.Psych.

Dr. Ulrich F. Lanius is a Registered Psychologist in West Vancouver, BC with a practice in Clinical and Neuropsychology. He has a particular interest in the effects of attachment and trauma, as well as brain-behaviour relationships in general. Dr. Lanius specializes in the treatment of trauma, dissociation and attachment. Working from a client-centered perspective, he has been at the cutting edge of integrating mindfulness-based approaches, EMDR, body-focused therapy and ego-state interventions with neurotherapy, specifically LENS neurofeedback. He also has a special interest in opioid antagonists and their therapeutic effects and he has been a pioneer in the use of low dose naltrexone (LDN) as an adjunctive intervention for dissociative symptoms. Dr. Lanius is a Fellow of the International Society of Trauma and Dissociation. He has presented both in North America, as well as internationally. He has written a number of articles and book chapters on both the treatment and the neurobiology of traumatic stress syndromes with a particular focus on dissociation including The Neurobiology and Treatment of Traumatic Dissociation: Toward an Embodied Self.

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