Brainspotting therapy is an innovative and powerful therapeutic approach that offers hope and healing for individuals struggling with various anxiety disorders. Developed by Dr. David Grand in 2003, Brainspotting has gained recognition and popularity among therapists and clients alike due to its ability to access and process deep-rooted trauma and distressing experiences where traditional therapy provides little results.

At its core, Brainspotting recognizes the profound connection between our visual field and our internal emotional states. It utilizes the brain’s natural ability to heal itself by locating and processing unresolved trauma and other negative experiences that are held in the body and the nervous system. The therapy acknowledges that traumatic memories and emotions are not solely stored in the mind but are also imprinted in the physical sensations and reactions of the body.

What Is Brainspotting Therapy and How Does It Work?

Unlike traditional talk therapies, Brainspotting goes beyond verbal communication, enabling clients to tap into their body’s wisdom and access subconscious material that may be difficult to verbalize. Through the use of eye positions, the therapist helps the client identify specific “brainspots” that correspond to the trauma or issue being addressed. These brainspots indicate where the client’s gaze naturally rests when they are recalling or experiencing distress related to a particular event.

During a Brainspotting session, the therapist facilitates the client’s exploration of the brainspot by maintaining a supportive and attuned presence. This allows the client to engage in a deep and focused processing of the stored trauma or distress, leading to resolution and healing. The brainspotting therapist may use various techniques, such as bilateral sound or tactile stimulation, to enhance the processing and integration of the targeted brainspot.

What Are the Advantages of Brainspotting Therapy?

One of the significant advantages of Brainspotting therapy is its versatility in addressing a wide range of psychological and emotional issues, including trauma, anxiety, depression, addiction, performance anxiety, and grief. It can be used as a standalone therapy or integrated with other alternative therapies offered at Serenity Trauma Healing Center to enhance overall effectiveness.

Another advantage to Brainspotting therapy is that it is generally a good option for people with anxiety disorders who don’t want to participate in speech-based therapies. While verbal communication is required, it is not the basis or focal point of Brainspotting therapy, making it a popular option for people who wish to steer clear from conversational therapy.

As Brainspotting continues to evolve, it offers a promising path toward healing for individuals seeking relief from unresolved trauma and emotional difficulties. With its focus on the body’s innate ability to heal and process, Brainspotting opens doors to profound transformation and growth, allowing individuals to reclaim their lives and move toward greater well-being.

How Many Brainspotting Sessions Are Required to See a Significant Improvement?

Each individual is wired differently, and every patient has had their own unique traumatic experience. In addition, we all react to trauma differently. There is no set average number of sessions required to treat people across the board. Rather, when you have your consultation with Serenity Trauma Healing Center, our specialty therapists will be able to assess your experiences and determine your level of anxiety. After making a diagnosis, an estimated number of sessions may be presented.

However, according to a research paper conducted by Fabio D’antoni titled “Psychotherapeutic Techniques for Distressing Memories: A Comparative Study Between EMDR, Brainspotting, and Body Scan Meditation,” researchers have concluded that it usually takes two to four sessions to see positive effects.

Do Certain Anxiety Disorders Usually Require More Brainspotting Treatments to Garner Results?

Brainspotting therapy conducted by specialists at Serenity Trauma Healing Center is designed to treat a wide range of anxiety disorders that include the following:

  • Survivor’s guilt PTSD
  • Addiction PTSD
  • Religious abuse PTSD
  • Generalized anxiety disorder
  • Panic disorder
  • Specific phobias
  • Social anxiety disorder
  • Agoraphobia
  • Performance anxiety disorder
  • Abuse PTSD
  • First responder / combat PTSD
  • Separation anxiety disorder
  • Selective mutism
  • Many more

Many studies indicate that patients with trauma originating from childhood experiences may require more brainspotting treatments than those who survived a traumatic event in their adult life. However, there are multiple factors including cultural, cognitive, and medical accouterments that will predicate an estimated treatment course with a set specific number of treatments to garner recovery.

Brainspotting Treatments for Patients with Childhood Trauma

Treating patients with Brainspotting who have suffered from childhood trauma is often more time-consuming and challenging than treating those with adult trauma due to several factors. Childhood trauma refers to adverse experiences that occur during a person’s early developmental years, typically before the age of 18. These experiences can include physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, neglect, or witnessing violence. Here are some common reasons why addressing childhood trauma can require additional Brainspotting sessions and why specialized attention and a longer treatment process is the usual protocol:

  • Developmental stage – Children are still in the process of forming their sense of self and understanding the world around them. Traumatic experiences during this crucial period can significantly impact their cognitive, emotional, and social development. Treating childhood trauma requires addressing not only the immediate effects but also the long-term consequences on their overall growth and well-being. This complexity adds time and complexity to the therapeutic process.
  • Limited verbal skills – Young children may lack the verbal and cognitive skills necessary to express their emotions and experiences fully. Unlike adults, who can articulate their thoughts and feelings, children often rely on nonverbal communication or play therapy to express their trauma. If such children were not given adequate therapy in their youth, the runoff from penned up anxiety amid a backdrop of limited verbal skills can pour over into one’s adult life and heighten the anxiety on both subconscious and conscious levels.
  • Establishment of trust – Building trust is a vital aspect of trauma therapy, regardless of the age of the individual. However, children who have experienced trauma may have trust issues due to their past experiences. Establishing a therapeutic alliance with a traumatized child can be more challenging and time-consuming, as therapists need to provide a safe and nurturing environment where the child feels comfortable sharing their experiences. Trust-building activities, consistency, and patience are essential components of the therapeutic process.
  • Long-term effects – Childhood trauma can have long-lasting effects that may not fully manifest until later in life. Unresolved trauma from childhood can contribute to various mental health disorders such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and personality disorders. Treating childhood trauma often involves addressing both immediate symptoms and potential long-term consequences, which requires a comprehensive and extended treatment plan.
  • Parental involvement – Unlike adult trauma therapy, childhood trauma treatment often involves the active involvement of parents or caregivers. Parents play a crucial role in supporting their child’s recovery and implementing strategies to promote healing. However, parental involvement can be complex, especially if they are also dealing with their trauma or if the child’s trauma stems from familial circumstances. Therapists must navigate these dynamics and engage parents in a collaborative treatment process, which can be time-consuming and challenging.
  • Systemic factors – Childhood trauma is often embedded within larger systemic issues, such as dysfunctional family dynamics, socioeconomic disadvantage, or community violence. Addressing childhood trauma requires a holistic approach that considers these systemic factors and aims to create supportive environments beyond the therapy room. Collaborating with other professionals, such as educators, social workers, and community organizations, adds complexity and time to the treatment process.

Even though patients are in their adult years, trauma that took place at the time of one’s childhood can require additional Brainspotting sessions and therefore be more time-consuming and challenging than treating individuals who experienced trauma in their adult years where developmental factors were not at play to further complicate the processing of the traumatic event in its infancy. In other words, factors such as one’s developmental stage, limited verbal skills, trust-building challenges, parental involvement, and systemic matters can complicate treatment approaches and require additional therapy sessions.

In fact, Serenity Trauma Healing Center will often create custom hybrid approaches to treating people with childhood trauma using a hybrid approach of Brainspotting and other therapies such as EMDR counseling. When you have your consultation with one of our Brainspotting therapists, you and the specialist will work together to determine the best therapeutic approach. At that time an estimated number of required Brainspotting therapy sessions will be determined.

How Long Do Brainspotting Sessions Last?

The length of a Brainspotting session is determined by each therapist. However, at Serenity Trauma Healing Center, Brainspotting therapy sessions are usually anywhere from three to five sessions a week, and each lasts roughly 60 minutes. A session can run up to 2 hours depending on the type of program the client is in. Since the purpose of Brainspotting sessions is to enable the patient to process through painful memories and difficult emotions that are usually rooted in a traumatic experience, the process is never rushed or forced and is instead gently led in a natural manner through the expert guidance of a certified Brainspotting therapist.

If I Require More Brainspotting Sessions than Anticipated, Is This the Best Treatment for My Anxiety?

Ultimately, the choice of therapy should be made in collaboration with a qualified mental health professional at Serenity who can assess your specific needs and preferences. While Brainspotting may offer unique benefits for anxiety treatment, it is important to consider other evidence-based approaches such as EMDR counseling, Somatic Experiencing, and Havening therapy.

Depending on the severity and nature of your anxiety, our therapists may recommend a custom amalgamation of two or more types of alternative therapies for PTSD and other anxiety disorders. A comprehensive assessment by a Serenity Trauma Healing Center Brainspotting professional will help determine the most suitable treatment approach to address your individual circumstances and goals.

Call Serenity Trauma to Book Your Brainspotting Consultation Today

According to research conducted by Kaiser Family Foundation, four in 10 American adults suffer from anxiety, which is roughly 39% of the adult population. In addition, more than 80% reported dismal results when seeking anxiety treatment through traditional talking-based therapy. Serenity Trauma Healing Center has a treatment success rate of more than 95% with Brainspotting being one of our primary types of alternative therapies used to treat people who suffer from a wide range of anxiety disorders.

If you’re looking for a transformative and effective therapeutic experience, booking a Brainspotting consultation at Serenity Trauma Healing Center can be the best investment you ever make in yourself. Brainspotting is a cutting-edge therapeutic approach that targets and unlocks deep-seated emotional and physiological trauma, leading to profound healing and growth. Here are just some of the top reasons why people located all over the U.S. book Brainspotting consultations with Serenity:

  • Targeted Approach – Brainspotting identifies and accesses the neurophysiological sources of trauma and distress in the brain. By directing attention to specific “brainspots” associated with the issue, the therapist can facilitate the processing and release of stored trauma, resulting in long-lasting change.
  • Versatility – Brainspotting can be utilized for a wide range of psychological challenges, including anxiety, depression, PTSD, phobias, addiction, and performance enhancement. Whether you’re struggling with a specific issue or seeking personal development, Brainspotting can help you navigate your unique journey.
  • Nonverbal Access – As previously mentioned, unlike traditional talk therapy, Brainspotting allows for deep exploration and healing without extensive verbal processing. It taps into the brain’s innate capacity to heal itself, bypassing the limitations of language and enabling access to deeper levels of the subconscious mind.
  • Client-Centered Approach – Brainspotting puts you in the driver’s seat of your healing process. The therapist serves as a supportive guide, creating a safe space for you to explore and process your experiences at your own pace, leading to a more empowering and transformative therapeutic experience.
  • Lasting Results – Brainspotting can lead to significant and lasting changes in your emotional, cognitive, and physiological well-being. By addressing trauma with the help of a Serenity Brainspotting therapist, and therefore releasing its grip on your system, you can experience greater emotional resilience, improved self-regulation, and enhanced overall functioning.

Now is the time to invest in your wellness and get to the root of your anxiety so that you can be successfully treated free to live an unfettered life of joy, confidence, and love. Call Serenity at 310-310-9249 today and book your Brainspotting consultation with one of our anxiety specialists to start a new and exciting chapter in your life free from the pangs of emotional distress.