What is Somatic Trauma Therapy?

Somatic Trauma Therapy was developed by Babette Rothschild as an approach for making psychotherapy and counselling with clients who have experienced trauma safer and aligned to their individual needs.

Somatic Trauma Therapy is an integrated treatment model that draws on a range of theory and techniques for the understanding and treatment of trauma and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Somatic Trauma Therapy is an integrated system of psychotherapy and body-psychotherapy that continues to evolve as new theory and techniques emerge in the field.

Somatic Trauma Therapy addresses a range of aspects of trauma’s impact (on thinking, emotions and bodily sensations) bringing them into sync through dual awareness, and acknowledging the often debilitating impact of the associated memories.

The main goal of Somatic Trauma Therapy is to support clients towards gaining control over the often debilitating symptoms associated with their trauma and in so doing help improve their quality of life. Successful Somatic Trauma Therapy does not necessitate the client recounting the details relating to the traumatic event, on the contrary it is important that the level of detail recounted is kept to a minimum if the potential for re-triggering the trauma memory is to be minimised.

Ultimately the Somatic Trauma Therapy approach is led by the client’s identified needs and not a pathway to or need for processing trauma memories.

The duration of Somatic Trauma Therapy can vary from a few sessions to several years depending on: the nature of the trauma; age at the time of the trauma; whether the trauma is an isolated event or intertwined with other traumas: if the trauma is in ongoing; and resources and strengths of the client. Ultimately the Somatic Trauma Therapy approach is guided by the client’s identified needs and not a pathway to or need for processing trauma memories.

Somatic Trauma Therapy is suitable for a range of professional clinicians including psychologists, social workers, mental health nurses, occupational therapists, psychiatrists, counsellors and psychotherapists and offers them an opportunity to reflect, learn and develop skills to support clients with Acute Stress Disorder, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and individuals who may seek treatment following a trauma.