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Complex Trauma & Dissociation

Earn 12 Hour CPD Certificate:  Live Training

Strategies for working with Complex Trauma: 

An intermediate-Advanced level workshop focused on the most challenging aspects of Complex trauma. All workshops cover how to safely deliver therapy Remotely (as well as face-2-face) & the extra challenges posed by COVID19.
  • Dissociation
  • Somatic-body intrusions
  • Overwhelming affect & sensory Images
  • Re-experiencing 
  • Perceptual distortions (trauma related pseudo-hallucinations)
  • Shame & Self-Loathing

Grounded in the current neurological and clinical research, this is a Relational T-FCBT approach. We look at how therapy for Complex PTSD can differ from single event trauma, common myths of trauma-focused treatment, and how to avoid the common pitfalls therapy. Offering Compassionate, safe and effective ways forward.

Current theories of Complex-PTSD and dissociation, updates in neuroscience and the role of memory processes in the development of PTSD will be explored, along with case conceptualization, treatment planning and phase-orientated therapy.

This Complex Trauma Workshop has been specifically designed to build on and extend the work you completed in the PTSD Master Class. We will cover new, in-depth material about working effectively with dissociation, the freeze response, overwhelming affect and sensory images, shame and self-loathing, numbing and disconnection. Plus increase our understanding of developmental trauma from a neurobiological perspective (see below). 

With the help of a female professional actor (client with Complex PTSD, stemming from developmental trauma), we will work with high levels of dissociation and self-harm, dive into real work complexities and discuss therapy pitfalls & the need for difficult balanced decisions. Our aim is to offer credible case material that is realistic and relevant to the work that you do, rather than easy textbook examples. A fantastic opportunity to look inside the therapy process and extensive debrief into the decision making & intervention processes. 

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    • The areas of the brain most impacted by developmental trauma
    • Why age of trauma impacts development
    • How neglect may be more detrimental than abuse
    • Why understanding the neuroscience of complex-trauma can help our clients work with symptoms
      • Why interpersonal neurobiology matters
      • The hormonal effects of trauma
      • Inflammatory biomarkers, somatic & autonomic correlations with trauma
      • Medically unexplained symptoms correlated with trauma
      • Why flashbacks feel like present experience, not past memory
      • How the links in the brain become distorted during dissociation
    • Is dissociation a single concept or multiple phenomena?
    • Depersonalisation & Derealisation
    • The controversy over Dissociative Identity Disorder
    • Dissociation and memory fragmentation
    • The 2019 ICD-II diagnostic criteria for Complex-PTSD
    • Strategies that can help your clients build resilience
    • How trauma may transmit from one generation to the next (epigenetics)
    • The freeze response vs tonic immobility
    • Overwhelming affect and sensory images
    • Shame and self-loathing
    • Numbing and disconnection
    • Like all our workshops, the Complex Trauma & Dissociation workshop is highly skill based. What we do is take a practical approach with ample opportunity to see ‘TF-CBT therapy in action' with live therapy demos and skills practice. We use a professional actor as our “client” to map out the therapy process in the most realistic way possible. We try not to shy away from real work complexities, therapy pitfalls & tough decisions. This is a fantastic opportunity to look inside the therapy process, with extensive debrief into the decision making & intervention processes. Making the most recent empirical research relevant for clinical practice, we give you the know-how to identify what helps clients to make changes in therapy and the skills to use that information to facilitate valued change. 

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CPD Level of Competence Required:

This is an Intermediate-Advanced level workshop. Delegates should have attended prior trauma-focused training offered by ourselves (or similar level of training offered elsewhere). Due to the cumulative nature of training, this workshop will build on and extend prior training. It is suitable for trained mental health professionals who have had prior supervised experience with Trauma-Focused therapy.  Please contact us directly if you are unsure. We are always happy to discuss and advise.  

Delegates on this workshop who practice therapy are required to have a membership of a relevant Regulatory Body such as HPCP or equivalent. There may be occasional exceptions to this requirement (for example, individuals conducting research into trauma who are not practising with clients). Any exception has to be discussed with us in advance, so please don't hesitate to get in touch

Joining Information:

Zoom Training: 9.30am - 4.00pm. Joining info sent 2 days prior to session.

Face-2-Face Training: Most Masterclass workshops are run from our BPS London Office (30 Tabernacle Street, London EC2A 4UE). Times: 9.30am - 4.00pm (doors open from 9.00am).

Venues in Wider areas of UK:

We want to deliver workshops in other regions of the UK. If you see a demand for PTSD & Trauma workshops for professionals in your area please get in touch with us.

We also offer bespoke workshops offering content tailored to meet the needs of your organisation. Please contact us to find out further 


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Self Care:

Our own professional responsibility for self-care is emphasised throughout the trainings. The PTSD Master Class Workshop contains detailed discussion of clinical case material and simulated client work pertaining to (but not necessarily limited to) sexual assault, childhood sexual abuse, rape, accidents, war-trauma, hospital trauma, veteran trauma and interpersonal violence. If you are in doubt as to whether this CPD workshop is appropriate for you, please discuss with us in confidence.