It’s difficult to find the right treatment for post-traumatic stress after its diagnosed. Experiences and intensities vary from person to person, and everyone responds differently to treatment. Many Veterans have reported, at an alarming rate, about their reliance on prescription drugs to ease the symptoms of PTSD. Drug cocktails may not be the best option to treat a potentially life-long condition when there are several other alternative therapy options.
Luckily alternative treatments for PTSD are continually developed and refined. One that caught my attention is called Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. I won’t pretend to understand the method, but the Boston Globe describes it well:
The therapy typically requires the patient to focus on blinking lights or a practitioner’s finger moving back and forth, usually for a few minutes at a time, while recalling the disturbing memories. In some instances, alternating tones in the ears or electrical pulses in the palms are used instead of visual cues.
EMDR is among the top recommended treatments of PTSD by VA, which also include cognitive behavioral therapy and exposure therapy. Steve Girard, the Veteran in the story, had positive results with EMDR.
PTSD treatment isn’t one size fits all, so if you’re looking for a way to cope and don’t like the idea of medication, perhaps a few of these therapies will suit you better.