Life Healing Center, located in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is a premier provider of trauma-informed treatment for adults age 18 and older who are struggling with mental health and addiction concerns. Recognizing that the effects of trauma can have an impact on the way a person responds to treatment, we are pleased to offer trauma-informed programming that can help set the stage for lifelong healing.
The Impact of Trauma
It is not uncommon for people who have lived through a traumatic event to struggle with symptoms of mental health concerns. It is also not uncommon for people to abuse substances as a way to cope with the emotional distress a traumatic event caused them. In some cases, people who lived through trauma develop symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In other cases, the effects can present differently, not necessarily aligning with a diagnosis of PTSD. Some individuals may not even realize that their traumatic experiences have played a role in the development of distressing symptoms or caused the onset of additional behavioral health concerns.
A traumatic experience is not a clearly defined, specific event that affects everyone the same. Traumatic events can include any number of things, and even if two people live through a similar event, they may not both view it as traumatic.
Examples of situations that have the potential to lead to trauma are:
- Natural disasters
- Mass shootings
- Terrorist attacks
- Serving in war
- Losing a loved one unexpectedly
It is important to note that a person does not have to physically experience an event for it to cause trauma. Sometimes just witnessing or hearing about a devastating event can lead to trauma. One example of this would be the attack on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. This event caused numerous people to feel traumatized, even though they may not have been physically present during it.
Regardless of what the situation may be, however, the important thing to recognize is that the way a person responds to an experienced trauma should be validated. And the distress they suffer from after living through, witnessing, or hearing about the event needs to be addressed.
People who are suffering from trauma may feel like there is no possibility of finding relief from their pain. They may feel as though their suffering will never end.
But there is hope. There are ways to find healing. There is treatment available.
When someone is suffering from the effects of trauma and makes the brave decision to get treatment in a trauma-informed program, they need to have the opportunity to receive care that is customized to meet their specific needs. For those who have experienced trauma, one of the best approaches to treatment is using trauma-informed care.
The main principle of trauma-informed care is acknowledging the impact trauma has had on a person’s life and tailoring their treatment to address the emotional effects. At the same time, professionals who provide trauma-informed care can help clients come to understand the actual signs of trauma so that the individuals themselves can be aware of how it is impacting them emotionally, psychologically, socially, and behaviorally.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) states that trauma-informed care should be delivered while following six key principles. SAMHSA outlines these principles as collaboration and mutuality, safety, voice, trustworthiness and transparency, empowerment, and choice. The goal is to help clients feel safe in their surroundings, have trust in the people they are working with, and feel empowered in their ability to confront their past experiences and develop the skills they need to cope moving forward.
Why Choose Trauma-Informed Treatment
When someone receives trauma-informed treatment, they have the opportunity to work with professionals who can first help them evaluate exactly how the traumatic experience has impacted them. Questions they might encourage the person to ask themselves could include:
- Am I having recurring memories of the event?
- Am I suffering from nightmares?
- Do random situations trigger distressing memories?
- Am I isolating myself from family and friends?
- Am I avoiding activities I used to enjoy?
- Am I afraid to leave my house?
- Am I struggling to perform at work?
- Do I have ongoing, intense feelings of fear?
- Have I had any problems with my physical health, such as ongoing headaches or persistent feelings of nausea?
- Am I having trouble sleeping?
- Has my appetite noticeably changed?
Giving someone the opportunity to process these questions and identify if and how those challenges may be presenting in their life can help them begin to understand how their world has changed as a result of trauma. It also helps the professional who is providing their treatment gain a sense of the specific things the person needs help working through.
While participating in trauma-informed treatment, clients also work with therapists who can guide them as they learn and practice coping skills that can help them respond to the impact traumatic experiences have had on their lives.
Adult Trauma-Informed Treatment Program in Santa Fe
The multidisciplinary team of professionals at our New Mexico adult trauma-informed recovery center believes in the importance of ensuring that every client receives comprehensive treatment that meets all their identified needs. For clients who have experienced trauma, our team believes that providing trauma-informed treatment is of the utmost importance for them to find true and lasting healing.
The team that provides care for clients in our trauma-informed treatment program includes professionals who have extensive expertise in their identified fields. Our team members include psychiatrists, licensed professional clinical counselors (LPCCs), licensed mental health counselors (LMHCs), licensed marriage and family therapists (LMFTs), licensed master social workers (LMSWs), and licensed and board-certified art therapists. We also have a highly qualified team of medical professionals, including physicians, primary mental health nurse practitioners, registered nurses, and licensed vocational nurses.
Clients who take part in our trauma-informed programming have access to a variety of therapies and services. Our team believes that for treatment to be truly comprehensive, clients must be able to participate in therapeutic interventions that help treat the mind, body, and spirit holistically.
While getting care at our trauma-informed treatment facility, clients can receive individual therapy, group therapy, and family therapy. During group therapy, clients have the chance to discuss a number of different topics, such as grief and loss, life skills, and relationships. We also offer groups specific to the needs of the LGBTQ+ community as well as groups that incorporate the principles of the 12-Step model of recovery.
In addition, clients can participate in a wide array of experiential and adjunctive therapies, which can include art therapy, psychodrama, massage therapy, narrative therapy, reiki, qi gong, sound therapy, sand tray therapy, craniosacral therapy, and mindfulness meditation.
As part of our trauma-informed treatment approach, we have also incorporated trauma-specific therapeutic elements into our program that clients may have included in their individualized treatment plans, such as eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), somatic experiencing, and trauma-informed yoga.
EMDR is an evidence-based approach to treating people who are suffering from the effects of trauma. This type of therapy has proved to help clients gain a sense of empowerment over the experiences they have had and ultimately alleviate the distress that relates to their memories of the traumatic event.
The goal of somatic experiencing is to modify a client’s response to trauma-related stress through bottom-up processing. It can help retrain a person’s brain to better process stress.
Trauma-informed yoga is a type of yoga that places an emphasis on breathwork and meditation in addition to traditional yoga practices. The instructors who lead trauma-informed yoga sessions approach the practice in a trauma-sensitive way that can aid in the client’s healing process. This can include things such as using soft music and lighting to avoid creating potential triggers for the client.
Incorporating these types of therapies and services into a client’s personalized treatment plan gives them the opportunity to receive all-inclusive care that treats all aspects of their life. It can allow them to find healing not only emotionally, but also physically and spiritually.
Our Healing Environment
Our trauma-informed recovery center offers the perfect setting for clients to begin their healing journeys. Nestled on 9 acres in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains in Santa Fe, New Mexico, our campus offers stunning surroundings that can help people feel a sense of tranquility and enjoy an escape from the busyness of their everyday lives.
Our campus is covered with footpaths and trails, and clients are encouraged to take advantage of the space by taking walks and allowing themselves to experience the healing power of nature. Clients reside in comfortable cabins, which prevents them from feeling like they are in a clinical setting.
We believe that the environment in which treatment is delivered is crucial to promoting success on a person’s healing journey. And at our trauma-informed treatment facility, we are able to offer the ideal environment.
If you have any questions about trauma-informed treatment or specific aspects of our adult trauma-informed program, we encourage you to contact us today.
This content was written on behalf of and reviewed by the clinical staff at Life Healing Center.