This practical workshop, led by Dr Felicity de Zulueta – one of UK’s leading experts on PTSD and complex PTSD – begins by discussing the latest diagnostic criteria for PTSD, and its dissociative manifestations, as they are presented in the new DSM V and in the current version of ICD-11. The workshop highlights how these diagnostic criteria ignore the existence of a wide range of presentations that arise in survivors of childhood abuse and emotional neglect as well as those who have suffered from chronic and severe exposure to traumatic events, a condition unofficially referred to as ‘developmental or complex PTSD’ and increasingly included within the domain of research on Adverse Childhood Experiences.
Such a state of affairs can leave therapists treating these clients / patients with little or no guidance in relation to the aetiology, diagnosis, assessment and treatment of their symptoms and makes research in the field very difficult. Dr Zulueta demonstrates how an understanding of these disorders from an attachment perspective, enables one to make sense of both the psychological and somatic symptoms clients / patients present with and the recent epigenetic findings relating to transmission of PTSD down the generations.
By integrating her clinical experience with Attachment research, Dr Zulueta outlines the process by which psychotherapeutically trained practitioners can assess and prepare traumatised clients for the ‘journey of therapy’ whilst bearing in mind their need for emotional regulation and a sense of security. The workshop discusses different therapeutic approaches to stabilisation & treatment of PTSD and the way severe traumatic attachments can lead to resistance to change. Viewing the assessment and treatment of PTSD through the lens of Attachment Theory, the workshop helps practitioners understand how a rupture in the neurobiological capacity to attune and the capacity to mentalise is fundamental to our understanding of traumatised individuals, while also providing practical new approaches to therapy for both complex and developmental PTSD. Utilising a series of video vignettes and clinical case examples, Dr Zulueta helps us comprehend the linkages between complex PTSD, so-called Borderline Personality Disorder, dissociative disorders and violent behaviour.
Continuing professional development through seminars, workshops and conferences for psychotherapists, counsellors and psychologists.