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Archive for the ‘Trauma’ Category

Read below to see the continuing great work our teams are doing in Rwanda.  This work and the 3 published studies from our work there are what contributed to TFT becoming recognized as Evidenced Based with SAMSHA and NREPP.  This work in Rwanda not only has treated over 20,000 individuals but facilitated the healing of a country while also helping us get TFT recognized here in the USA.  We desperately need your help with funds for the remaining months of the mourning period.  We need an additional $1500 to cover the rest of June and July.  Please help us with this important work.

TFT Kigali, team leaders and practitioners are working hard to help the masses of people who have been traumatized and retraumatized during the 2018 Annual Mourning Period throughout Rwanda, facilitating healing from the 1994 Genocide.

Our leader, Celestin Mitabu, says, “When TFT practitioners serve the community with psychologists from the public institutions, we are all equal in the way of doing things, that is why we hold Hospital badges, showing we are treating people that have been traumatized.”

They work in many regions around the country.  He said, “We are very pleased to share with you more pictures take during our tapping and healing programs at Rwabicuma Sector Nyanza District southern province.”

We also share some pictures showing the funeral of bodies exhumed in mass graves 24 years after the genocide.  This is very traumatic for family members and TFT is helping them to heal.

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For many veterans, the last battle is still being fought long after they retired their uniforms. In too many cases the final action ends by taking their own lives. Current statistics reflect that twenty veterans take their own lives each day of the year. My personal experience and encounters with other combat veterans lead me to believe that most carry some degree or piece of the last battle that has not been put to rest. Accumulated past or bad experience stressors may result in hyper-vigilance, anger or guilt brought on by a thought, smell or dream.

As a recipient and now a provider of TFT, I see the positive results of this modality on a daily basis. The following case study is only unique in that the administration of the treatment occurred from a distance of hundreds of miles between the provider and recipient. This review also provides the perspective of the treatment from the viewpoint of each participant.

Provider Statement: Provider is a licensed therapist and retired veteran who served as an Infantry Officer.  The therapist was previously diagnosed with PTSD and treated via the TFT modality more than six years ago. The provider later attended the Callahan Boot Camp Program in Nellysford, VA under the tutelage of Joanie Callahan. The provider is a contractor at a substance abuse clinic and incorporates TFT among the treatment modalities that are utilized in the clinic. The nature and profile of the clients he assists in treatment/counseling often present individuals that have suffered traumas not only from accidents but horrific physical and mental abuse.

The recipient of TFT is over the age of 60 and a retired veteran within the US military infantry specialty. The recipient is happily married and is a recognized and sought out professional within his civilian occupation.

Interview prior to Treatment: The recipient was interviewed via phone one week prior to the first therapy session. The recipient provided an honest and detailed description of his past military experiences and his own assessment of his strengths, weaknesses and emotional/behavioral reactions associated with combat stress.

The provider assessed that the recipient clearly fell under the perimeters of the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM-5) criteria for diagnoses of PTSD. The initial interview lasted approximately 60 minutes. Post interview assessment determined that the recipient possess anger issues, has carried long-term senses of grief/loss, and is hypersensitive to personal security for himself and others. It was initially assessed that the recipient required at least three sessions to address major treatment areas to include Grief, Anger and recurrent disturbing thoughts brought on by external triggers.

Due to the physical distance between the two veterans of over 600 miles, cell phone connection with video feed was established by installing the APP “WhatsApp.” Prior to the session, the recipient was provided by e-mail a TFT “Tapping Point Chart” via the Callahan Boot Camp Program.

First Session: After making visual adjustments of cell phones to enhance the viewing of the recipient/provider, a demonstration of tapping for both algorithm and blockage points was conducted. Based on prior discussion and diagnose, the treatment protocol algorithm Complex Trauma with Anger and Grief was selected (eb-e-a-c-tf-c-if-c) as the appropriate treatment regime.

Veteran’s Statement of Treatment: To begin the session Provider recited the following scripture from Jeremiah 29:11: “For I know the plans I have for you declared the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

My Thought Field was a recount of combat actions that occurred on July 3, 2007 conducted in Iraq. While acting as a gunner on our Humvee the patrol encountered the denotation of two enemy Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and small arms fire. A Bradley fighting vehicle in our group was fired upon with a Rocket Propelled Grenade (RPG) and I returned fire on a concrete building with our M2 (50 cal.) (heavy machinegun).

During this firefight which occurred less than 2 miles from base, we had been augmented with a patrol from another US Army unit which included Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) elements. After triggering 2 IEDs, one blast shielded my vehicle by the Bradley moving in the opposite direction from our vehicle. We then came under small arms fire requiring us to turn and head West.

I identified a small concrete building near a swampy area to our right that seemed to be the source of fire. I immediately engaged with heavy machine-gun the building completely demolishing it and causing the gunfire to cease. As we proceeded, my driver called out a possible target; a small red battered car with what appeared to be a gray/metallic tube sticking out of the trunk. The vehicle we spotted turned into the entrance road and it appeared it was trying to escape the area. We turned into the road in pursuit. My driver and Troop Commander (TC) were calling for me to fire on the vehicle. However, my internal sense did not feel right so I fired the M2 at the curbing on the right side of the vehicle to get it to stop; which it did.

Disregarding further calls from the TC to fire on the vehicle, we pulled alongside. As we got within 20 feet of the vehicle, I recognized the item in the trunk as a bird bath pedestal. We pulled alongside; two small children (about 3 and 5 years of age) stuck their heads up above the back seat. A slim woman dressed in black and white was in the front seat cradling a baby in her lap. The sight of the occupants caused me both immediate grief and relief. The grief was about what might have happened if I had fired on the car and relief that we did not harm this family.

Provider Statement: Commencing the algorithm sequence, it initially appeared that the veteran was having some difficulty in reducing his SUDs level and Provider quietly instructed the recipient to concentrate on his stressor event/ narrow focus. After, his first SUDs reduction the provider introduced the 9 Gamut sequence followed by a blocking point tapping via one of the following points during the treatment: “hand chop”, sore spot, chin and under the nose if a client is having difficulty lowering SUDs. After, the initial drop in SUDs, the recipient had a noticeable physical reduction of stress in his body and facial features on each following completion of the algorithm. At the last SUDs reduction, the recipient was asked “where are you? and he stated, “on the mountain/his interpretation of SUDs 1.” Recipient completed one more complete algorithm sequence, 9 Gamut, followed by the floor to ceiling sequence. The recipient was then instructed to rest back in his chair with eyes closed and to savor the peace for the next 1-2 minutes.

Provider Recount of Veteran’s Immediate Reaction to Session: At the completion of the session the veteran stated that he was amazed at how well and relieved he felt. He stated that the clarity of the event also surprised him. Further stated that he could physically feel his guilt fade away and realized that there was no reason for his guilt; that in effect he saved the lives of the three children and their mother. He actually refused an order to fire into the vehicle which was a courageous personal decision he made on his own volition. The veteran stated that he could even see in his mind with detail the color of the mother’s hair with the baby in her arms and the exact color of their car. I requested that the recipient call me in a week to tell me his current thoughts and emotions of that event.

Veteran’s Post Treatment Comments: Therapist advised that I should take a week to see what effects the session had and to call him on my personal assessment. Over the years I believe this incident has caused me great stress to the point of sometimes weeping when something triggers that event in my mind. My session with therapist allowed me to recall it with great clarity and the ability to recall small details. It also allowed me to put aside the grief and anger aspects and make me realize that I did the right thing and to be proud of that fact. It underscored that a higher power guided my hand that day and I am proud that I could recognize that guidance.

Session 2: 10/23/2017: Veteran’s Overall Thought Field (Anger) – Today’s session was to address anger issues mostly stemming from traffic problems arising during patrols of Mosul in 2007. On many of the patrols we did in and about the city and province, we would encounter inattentive or even some purposefully bad Iraqi drivers that would test the 100-meter rule. All our vehicles had signs printed in English and Arabic warning civilian drivers to remain 100 meters back or be fired upon if they encroached our vehicles. The primary reasons for distance separation are to be able to discourage traffic accidents and to identify potential VBIEDs (vehicle-borne improvised explosives) from terrorist.

As vehicle commander, I had the option of riding in the gun turret or the right seat of the vehicle. While in the gun mount I would be obligated to maintain the distance rule by the show of force by directing the M2 machine gun barrel in the direction of the oncoming vehicle. Those closing vehicle occurrences would usually enrage me.

For today’s session, I chose to concentrate my thoughts on an incident that took place in the convoy in Mosul and en route to base at Al Kindi. At approximately 14:30 near the center of the bridge, we were approached from the rear by a white civilian vehicle moving at a high rate of speed and obviously ignoring our warning sign.

We were the last vehicle of a 3-vehicle convoy and my responsibility was the rear sector. When I saw the vehicle, I waved palm outward to slow him down; he did not. I then raised my M4 (rifle) and fired into the pavement; no change. I then withdrew my M9 (pistol) figuring a 9 mm round would do the least damage and fired directly in front and underneath the vehicle. This action slowed the driver. My last resort would have been to fire the .50 cal. machine gun causing a devastating result.

This incident was representative of the many incidents that causes me great anger and hyper-vigilance to this day. I can still remember pedestrians, including women and children, walking on the bridge requiring me to use extreme care in firing and heightening my rage at having to use my weapons to slow this moron down.

Provider Statement: I initially began to treat the recipient via TFT algorithm for Complex trauma with anger (eb-e-a-c-tf-c). The client was slow to respond in dropping his SUDs levels, so I introduced two separate blocking point actions (hand chop and sore spot massage). The recipient was slow to show a positive drop in SUDs. Recalling the success during our last session, I reintroduced the (index finger (if) into the algorithm. The effect of adding the single tapping point (tf) reflected an immediate positive drop that was visibly noticeable on the recipient’s facial features. We continued the session and recipient quickly reached SUDs 1 followed by 9g and floor to ceiling procedure. The client was put to rest for a minute and presented his recount of the treatment.

Veteran’s Statement: Today’s session helped crystallize the details of the event and to lower my feelings about it. The proof will be how I react in a traffic situation from here on out.

Veteran’s Addendum 06/06/18: First, I’m amazed that 8 months have passed since our last session. I can say that I have had no recurrences of the “bird bath” episode. Our sessions have relieved me of the anxiety and feelings of guilt associated with that incident and quite frankly, I’ve not even thought of that event.

Second, although there are still intermittent flashes of temper, the frequency, duration, and intensity are extremely reduced. (Just ask my wife – who is a clinical psychiatric nurse practitioner). There are still some things that will trigger flashes of anger, but I find that the anger passes quickly and the issue is quickly forgotten. I have practiced the single point tapping on my own on rare occasions where I felt a bit stressed by something that triggered my anger resulting in relief (Explosive Anger – side of eye and Collarbone).

Third, and probably most importantly, I have been trying to get my son to commit to doing these sessions with the provider. He is a two-tour veteran of Afghanistan and I think he would benefit immensely from these sessions.

Author’s note: I thank my friend and brother in arms who graciously shared his combat experience, fears, and courage in order to help others who have been exposed to life threating events, horrific sights, and loss. The majority of veterans and those still serving that I know savior the experience of their service to our country for its unity, bonding, and pride they receive from their accomplishments.

I have now been practicing TFT within a clinical setting and pro-bona work with others for approximately 20 months. I currently assist clients/patients that are addicted to opiates. Our country is truly experiencing an opiate epidemic that impacts every segment of our society from the poor to the wealthiest of families. Unfortunately, addiction in too many incidences leads to abuse, depression, assaults, disease, loss of wealth, imprisonment or death. Each of those items is the birthing grounds for traumas, phobias, mental illness, and anxiety. TFT has proven to be as successful in treating trauma in the civilian population as it can for military veterans.

Scott G. Duke,
Lt Col USMC (Ret), LMSW

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PTSD mentions of TFT

Two recent meta-analyses reviewing efficacious treatments for PTSD include mentions of TFT

The first, a meta-analysis and systematic review, reviewed 36 psycho-social interventions for treating disaster trauma in children and adolescents. This review included a research study by Sakai, Connolly and Oas (2010) treating PTSD in child genocide survivors in Rwanda using Thought Field Therapy. Of the different interventions, the TFT study reported the largest pre- to post-treatment effect size. It was published in Psychological Medicine.

The second meta-analysis by Morina et al, reviewed research by Connolly and Sakai (2012) with genocide survivors in Rwanda. It was published in Depression and Anxiety.

​​​​​​​Thanks to ACEP member John Freedom for sharing this!

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We are sharing this on behalf of one of our newest Algorithm Practitioners in the Middle East, Zena Nabil Hammami.  It is her first case study after completing her online algorithm certification course. 

Just think what a difference it could make in the lives of children everywhere, and especially those living in the war-torn areas around our planet. 

  • Client identifier: SH

A friend of mine came to me to help her little son, he was 6 years and he was having a daily “Enuresis”, actually his mother used to put a baby diaper for him every night, she said that she took him to the doctor and after doing the medical tests, there seemed to be no clinical reason, his urinary system was ok!

I knew previously that the boy was having difficult times in the war here in Syria especially in his city, so I started to talk to the boy in  a lovely and kind way, I asked him about his most fears, and I understand that he was afraid to lose his mother as he lost his father (his father is a prisoner for years)  in the war, so his body is reacting in this way so he can gain more attention from his mother like a baby! So I started to begin the process with the: Algorithm of Fears “ simple phobias”.

First I told him that I’m going to play a game with you, I want you to remember the most difficult time that makes you afraid and you left your father then we are going to tap our body to free them like bubbles, he closed his eyes and said ok, then I told him how big is your fear, is it like this ( I opened my hands wide ) he said yes, then I started tapping the points of Algorithm on my face and told him to imitate me as if we are playing! (e – a – c) then next the SUD becomes lower directly (he demonstrated the level of SUD with a narrow space of hands, then I continued the sq + 9g + sq until his fears disappeared and finally we used the eye roll (floor to ceiling).

The boy showed no reversals and he responded directly. Now the most important thing is that I knew the next day from his mother that the “ Enuresis” disappeared !! J and I followed with him daily, the problem has totally resolved .. he was healed.

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Jim Mc Aninch, TFT-ADV, TFT-RCT and Tom Greenhalgh made a presentation about clearing issues which troubled Veterans, Public Safety and Addicts in their struggles with recovery, entitled “They don’t Talk, Trust or Feel”. 

911 dispatchers are a unique group, for they are the first responders. They are the first ones to connect with the individuals or groups with an emergency need. They must take the information, figure out the need and then relay that information to the proper responders with the correct location in seconds.  There is no room for error for they are dealing with life and death situations. Like the military and their special operation individuals; they are a challenging group to gain entry into.

With the development of CISM procedure and CISM teams working with the various responder groups, the value of this to the members was being recognized. Unfortunately the dispatchers we’re not included in these groups because they were not at the scene of the incident and it was felt that they were not affected by the event.

A number of years ago, I was called in to help with a crisis that had occurred within the northern zone of the Pittsburgh call center. On the northern zone’s weekend off, the team’s group leader/mentor was along with his wife killed in a tragic car crash. The crew members were unaware of the incident until reporting to work. The whole crew was impacted by the event and unable to safely work on the screens. The Chief Administrative Officer for Allegheny County requested immediate help from Pittsburgh’s CISM team. I was available and I went in to assess the need and give them what I was trained in regarding crisis intervention. I was able to educate them with regard to the possible effects of a critical incident but I also became aware that more was needed, to possibly find immediate relief.  I made the choice to integrate TFT into the crisis intervention work. I was able to stabilize thirteen dispatchers through one on ones and combinations in four hours which permitted them to safely return to work supporting the city of Pittsburgh. I immediately became the Chief’s designated 911 Center CISM representative ever since.

Over the years we were seeing positive results of what was being done to help the dispatchers; the Shift Commanders and the EMS manager would call me in to help with the top critical incidents affecting the call center.   Not only was the technique I had developed effective, it was trusted by the dispatchers in the call center. I became the CISM man and was now working with Westmoreland County Call Center along with Allegheny County Call Center.  I would only go in when the call center needing help would called the Stat Command Center requesting help from the CISM team.

This past year I had been called into work with four major critical incidents the –worst of the worst–. Two calls occurring in Westmoreland County were the Line Duty Deaths of a Police officer, where the wife of one of the fallen officers worked in the call center as a dispatcher. The two calls in Allegheny County also were the– worst of the worst– with the suicide of a call center dispatcher which was heard over the 911 call, and the sudden death of a twenty year trainer who had impacted so many dispatchers in their journey.

I worked successfully with over forty seven dispatchers on a one on one basis at the scene as the event was going on, generally within an hour of the critical incident. I realized that the crisis intervention procedure that I had developed which is integrated with TFT is quick, effective and repeatable. These individuals came to see me affected by the critical incident but other things unique and unexplainable to them was coming up, they we’re not ready to talk about it, let alone ready to tap on it.

I generally saw the individual who was visibly impacted by the event first. If they we’re able to find some relief and if they were comfortable and trusted me another would come to see me. All my work is done on a voluntary basis and no one is forced to talk with me. I generally spent anywhere from fifteen minutes to an hour with the individuals when I spoke with them; and I had no previous information about them prior to our meeting. I am usually located in an area where they can come in to see me with privacy. As one individual would go back to the call center another would come in to see me. With a major event I am usually there eight to sixteen hours. I will then come back in eight to twelve hours to see if I missed anyone or if they wanted to meet with me again.

How I know that this technique is working is a couple of ways. The dispatchers are seeking me out because of word of mouth from the experience of other dispatchers, they trust me. I have been having the individuals at the upper management positions acknowledging and writing about the positive effects and the effectiveness in the call centers while going through the worst crisis. A seasoned and senior Shift Commander put it this way “I am watching the dispatchers walking in to see you being very distraught and beaten but when they come back they are visibly relieved and are able to go back on the screens.”

I am currently on a state wide task force to deal with the increasing problem of suicide with public safety individuals and I am one person’s approval away from putting in a pilot program with one of the largest drug and alcohol treatment programs in the country using these techniques.

For the readers who don’t know me I am neither a public safety first responder nor am I a licensed mental health therapist. I am a veteran and a trained peer with Pittsburgh’s CISM team for over twenty years, I have close to thirty years in recovery and I am a person who cares and is willing to do the work necessary to make a difference.

Jim Mc Aninch, TFT-ADV, TFT-RCT
Crisis Wellness LLC
www.crisiswellness.com
Jim@crisiswellness.com

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Listen to what the Rwandans are saying and doing to help heal their country from the devastation of genocide.  Fr. Augustin sent us this brief video.  Learn what they are doing to make sure it never happens again.  Take just a quick minute to see what they are doing and how you can help us continue this work.

We need your help to continue.  You can contribute from the foundation’s website:  www.TFTFoundation.org

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Sponsored by the TFT Foundation and supported by the Nalaniikaleomana Foundation in Hawaii, Dr. Caroline Sakai and Cyndie and Gary Quinn went to Rwanda in September to help give more TFT trainings–and to support, however they could, the TFT IZERE Center, Byumba, and TFT Kigali. This included TFT trainings for the Rwandan Correctional System, part of the TFT Foundation’s new Rwandan Prison Project.

In order to expand TFT to all the prisons of Rwanda, which has been requested by the Rwandan General Commissioner of Corrections, funds are greatly needed. For more information about these efforts–and to help the foundation heal the hearts of Rwanda’s prisoners, their families, and prison staff–click on this link. Such a powerful way to contribute to World Peace.

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