River Oaks Hospital


Trauma-Based Disorders Therapy

The Trauma Recovery and Crisis Stabilization Programs provide individual, group, and expressive therapies as a means of facilitating the focused expression of strong emotion. Psychoeducational modules address primary recovery skills, creating safety while decreasing crisis-generation and maladaptive thinking and behaviors.  Finally, trauma group allows clients to share their individualized treatment gains and struggles with peer and therapist support.

Trauma-Based Disorders: Crisis Stabilization

Many clients experience strong, impulsive, out-of-control or over-controlled emotions. Anger is externalized or self-directed in a harmful manner. Typically, the individual has difficulty dealing with interpersonal relationships and daily stressors. The result is often suicidal feelings, self-harm and/or other dangerous uncontrolled behavior. The initial goals of symptom relief include:

Trauma stabilization is achieved by utilizing cognitive-behavioral principles in teaching clients to:

Trauma-Based Disorders: Treatment Goals

Trauma-Based Disorders: Full Involvement

Referring therapists are encouraged to participate in treatment planning during the admissions process. The New Orleans Institute therapists then offer recommendations to mental health professionals to aid them in continued outpatient therapy with their clients post discharge.

Trauma-Based Disorders: Common Mental Issues

Uncontrollable recollections, images or spontaneous reliving of aspects of trauma (e.g., overwhelming thoughts or feelings, nightmares, outbreaks of anger, rapid mood swings, helplessness or irrational feelings) are the most common symptoms that cause the individual or family distress. Sometimes the impact of trauma surfaces in the form of extreme anxiety, cycles of depression, pervasive fear, self-blame and an inability to trust (self and others). The client may feel fragmented, separated or different from others. Frequently, there is a feeling of un-fillable emptiness inside, as if one is an impostor. Over time, individuals may find themselves participating in increasingly destructive behaviors to provide a connection and to break the numbness.

Maladaptive coping behaviors include:

Trauma-Based Disorders: Our Special Mental Health Programs

Trauma-Based Disorders: Mental Health Recovery

Our program focuses on enabling the client to break the trauma bond, which has controlled the client’s thoughts, feelings and behaviors. They process and face fears that can eventually result in relief of trauma-related symptoms, as well as integration of dissociated aspects of the experience and of self. For trauma victims, dissociation often results in memory disturbance. While dissociation is adaptive at the time of the trauma, it can later become maladaptive by causing an inability to recognize the underlying causes of current distress.

The individual becomes numb, stops thinking and feeling, and feels like an object. Bonding to others is disrupted, as are object relations, self-esteem and trust. Often the individual experiences chronic depression, repetitive self-destructive behaviors, and even apparent hallucinations. Many individuals are erroneously diagnosed as psychotic and typically they do not respond to treatment.

The program addresses the dissociative state by utilizing the grief model called “Reliving, Revising and Revisiting.” After forming a trusting, safe relationship with the primary therapist, the individual addresses core trauma issues. As they begin to feel the trauma, reassociating the cognition and the affect, information reprocessing techniques are utilized to restructure their sense of self in relation to “what was done to them.”