Physical Therapy Consulting
Welcome to my integrative physical and psychological therapy practice for the treatment of trauma.
Are you a physical therapist who frequently sees patients with complex chronic conditions, including chronic pain, fibromyalgia, IBS, chronic vestibular dysregulation, and traumatic brain injuries? Are you informed and differentiating between patients presenting with centralized Brain Pain Amplification problems verses Peripheral Pain? Perhaps you are familiar with the Associative Awareness Techniques, and understand the importance of addressing the root causes of the conditions associated with the unconscious fight/flight/freeze responses associated with autonomic nervous system (ANS) dysregulation, rather than just the symptoms. Maybe you are aware of how (ANS) dysregulation can occur when traumatic incidents are experienced, but aren’t sure of all of the varied ways trauma can manifest itself clinically. Perhaps you are aware of Steven Porges’ Polyvagal Theory, but not sure how it relates to ANS dysregulation and the threat response.
As a physical therapist, you probably have had many patients who are referred for therapy, progress the way you hope and expect, experience recovery or significant improvement, and then carry on with their lives, while others do not. This is especially true with patients presenting with complex multi-systems problems and chronic pain. During my 30+ years as a physical therapist I kept bumping into people and conditions that did not respond according to the averages presented in a typical bell curve. When I returned to graduate school to broaden my approach to healing, I devoted a year researching how pain recovery patients, with the underpinnings of trauma, often follow a different trajectory in the healing process. As I begin interweaving my knowledge and experience of physical therapy, somatic psychotherapy and trauma therapy I’d like to offer support for other physical therapists who are thirsty for a more mindful and integrative foundation to draw upon in treating those often hard to treat patients.
As the biopsychosocial model has replaced the traditional dualistic biomedical viewpoint, it is becoming increasingly important for us to incorporate understanding and skills to deal with the ANS dysregulation, and the emotional components that influence the healing trajectory of our patients. David Butler and associates, in the book Explain Pain, have contributed immensely to our field using the foundation of neuroscience to better understand the relationship between the threat response and pain perception. Additionally, Steven Porges’ research and development of the Polyvagal Therapy, has significantly reworked our understanding of how the ANS responds to threat and trauma. By incorporating greater knowledge and skills to address these interdependent aspects of healing and recovery, we can provide our patients with a richer, more integrative, body-mind healing experience. Robert Scaer, MD, has authored several valuable publications, including The body bears the burden and The trauma spectrum that are particularly helpful for anyone treating patients suffering the varied and disruptive after-effects of a MVA. John E. Sarno, MD has also contributed insightful clinical perspectives to the treatment of psychosomatic medicine.
I invite you to follow my blogs for information, resources, skills, and support that may be helpful for you in your treatment approach, especially for your patients who have survived trauma.
I have been working closely with several physical therapy offices in the Boulder and Denver area offering in-service trainings, consultation, and working directly with some of their patients. In addition to my blog posts, I am available to support you and your staff in similar ways.
Additionally, I would love to be considered someone you feel comfortable referring your patients to who are interested in the mindbody connection to healing, or who’s recovery is being complicated by untreated trauma.
Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like copies of my psychotherapy brochures and business cards to display in your office for your patients. They offer a practice description, my website address, practice locations, and how to reach me.