Healing

Traumatic

Stress

App Series

Rest, Relax, Reconnect

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Overcomingpain targets the physiological effects of trauma and/or PTSD such as pain and medically unexplained symptoms. This app comprises over 20 sessions of guided imagery, self-hypnosis and brain stimulation designed to reverse the increased physiological arousal and emotional distress that maintains trauma-related pain. These sessions are divided into 3 playlists. Mental Healing strategies (top-down), Sensory Healing strategies (‘bottom-up’) and Stress Management. The first two playlists use ascending and descending pain pathway strategies A unique feature is the incorporation of a simulated fMRI sessions to help change the brain activity that maintains pain. Descending pain pathways stimulate the body’s natural opioid system (endorphins and enkephalins) to alleviate pain.

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Anxiety Release targets the anxiety that is a core feature of trauma and/or PTSD. Comprising 10 sessions, users are introduced to dual focus of attention and BLS and then taught how to utilize this to decrease anxiety and tension associated with present stressors/triggers. The core sessions (‘Anxiety Release 1 &2’) teach users how to use dual focus of attention/bilateral stimulation to overcome anxiety, supplemented with brain visuals. There several unguided BLS sessions for general relaxation and self-soothing. Other sessions address the need for safety (‘safe place’) and the dissociation between child and adult ego states that maintains anxiety (‘healing the anxiety’). All sessions come with the option of male or female voice to cater for individuals who may be triggered by the opposite gender.

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Calm and Confident targets the effects of posttraumatic stress on identity. Beyond just managing anxiety and tension, just surviving, Calm & Confident aims to help trauma survivors/PTSD sufferers connect with their own capacity for self-efficacy, joy and fulfilment. This app comprises 10 sessions of guided ego-enhancing meditations and stress-management sessions, enhanced by soothing music and BLS. The BLS stimulates a calm, safe state which permits the integration of positive self-regard and beliefs. The confidence comes from the experience of receiving positive feedback about oneself under conditions of relaxation. Other sessions incorporate visual and auditory BLS and positive affirmations to build resourced states (‘Peaceful Journey’). Recipients of EMDR or EMDR therapists will be familiar with these strategies as resource building, developmentally oriented therapists will recognize them as re-parenting.

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Sleep restore addresses the sleeping problems that are so commonly associated with trauma and/or PTSD. Insomnia has been identified as the bridge that links somatic symptoms with PTSD. Sleep Restore comprises over 20 sessions of self-hypnosis, soothing sounds and BLS, divided into two playlists, ‘getting to sleep’ and ‘getting back to sleep’ with the option of creating individualized playlists. There are different sessions for overcoming worry and tension, the 2 main causes of insomnia. The app also generates recommendations based on responses to a sleep questionnaire and indicates whether professional help might be needed. There is a free version of this app comprising 6 sessions for people to try it out.