Trauma Psychology

& PTSD

Are you or a loved one struggling with the impact of past and/or current trauma?

Overview

Trauma-informed care involves psychological treatment that recognizes the impact of trauma in an individual’s functioning in everyday life. Clinicians at CFIR provide a caring, compassionate, collaborative, and confidential space to facilitate this healing process. Clinicians providing trauma-informed care are also sensitive to your healing process in the aftermath of traumatic life events.

Traumatic experiences may leave an indelible imprint on our sense of self, others, and the world. Memories of such events and the re-activation of these memories in everyday life (i.e., triggering events) can create high levels of emotional distress and dysregulation, alter one’s sense of self, identity, reality, and relationships, and may have an impact on one’s daily functioning.

Whether a one-time incident (e.g.., being in or witnessing a car accident, a physical or sexual assault, being tortured or in war, etc.) or repeated exposure (e.g.., childhood emotional, physical, sexual abuse, or emotional and physical deprivation, bullying, to a trauma-inducing experience), clinicians at CFIR are well-trained to address the different types of trauma and use a variety of different kinds of treatment to support you in your recovery.

Clinicians at CFIR are also sensitive and in tune with the complexity of trauma when socio-cultural forms of oppression and trauma (i.e., race, gender, sexual orientation oppression) overlap with trauma experiences.

Complex Trauma

Childhood adverse experiences, such as emotional, physical, and sexual abuse (i.e., acts of commission) or emotional and physical neglect and deprivation (i.e., acts of commission), can severely impact our sense of self, identity, and relationships. Attachment figures in childhood (i.e., parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc.) are supposed to be sources of soothing, comfort, and protection to children as they grow. They are assumed to support the child in dealing with complexity and emotional distress and face everyday life challenges by providing supportive responses to help the child maintain a felt sense of safety and security. Attachment trauma occurs when a child’s attachment figure is unavailable and/or becomes a source of distress and danger (i.e., inappropriate emotional responding to the child’s emotions and needs, boundary intrusions and violations, physical and sexual abuse, emotional neglect and deprivation, etc.). These experiences impact the child’s emotional, social and psychological development that may have a serious impact on one’s sense of self (i.e., emotional and self-regulation), identity, and the capacity for interpersonal relationships. 

When expectations of support and care from an attachment figure are met with no or adverse responses to the child’s expression of emotional distress and need, the impact on relationships can be severe, including difficulties relying and depending on others. A parent’s abandonment of a child in a time of need or rejection of a child’s self-expression can lead to a lifetime of depression and anxiety. Unpredictable, uncertain, and chaotic environments in childhood can further alter a child’s sense of self.

Finally, children can also face systematic abuse and marginalization in childhood from siblings or other children, such as school peers (i.e., bullying). These types of social rejection by siblings and peers can also leave an indelible mark on one’s sense of self and other, and form the basis of high levels of social fears and depression.

Clinicians at CFIR provide integrated trauma-informed treatment to support individuals to move through the healing process of early childhood trauma. Various evidence-based treatments, including trauma-focused, psychodynamic, attachment-based, cognitive-behavioural, emotion-focussed, and EMDR, may be used to support you.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder 

The DSM-V defines PTSD as precipitated by an individuals exposure to: death, threatened death, actual or threatened serious injury, or actual or threatened sexual violence (whether by direct exposure, witnessing, learning of a close relative exposed to the trauma, or exposure to details in the line of professional work).  

Trauma in Everyday Life:  Daily, we encounter moments of risk and potential danger. In circumstances where an incident has profoundly impacted you, such as an assault or car accident, it is crucial to seek help to heal from the aftermath of a potentially traumatic stressor. Cognitive and emotional processing of such events can alleviate symptoms and offset the development of PTSD.

First Line Responders: Our heroic first-line responders face adversity daily. If you are a first-line responder and have witnessed a horrific scene in the line of duty, Clinicians at CFIR can provide specific treatments to support you to heal. 

Clinicians at CFIR provide integrated trauma-informed care that may involve the integration of evidence-based trauma treatments. We also offer a novel treatment for PTSD, known as Reconsolidation Therapy.

What’s Reconsolidation Therapy?

This treatment is highly recommended for individuals who have experienced a one-time traumatic incident that has created acute or traumatic stress. This treatment is provided by Dr. Genevieve Boudreault and her team of therapists in both Ottawa and Toronto. Click here to read a description of this treatment.

Help Is Available

If you or your loved one is struggling with the impact of past and/or current trauma, consider meeting with one of the highly trained mental health professionals in the Trauma Psychology & PTSD Treatment Service at CFIR. Our mental health professionals can support you to address your or your loved ones’ concerns, difficulties or struggles related to traumatic experiences.

Help is available right now for you and your loved ones. We also offer video-based appointments to fit our clients’ needs.

Find A Therapist

We have many mental health therapists at both our locations who offer this service. Please select a location below to see a list: