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  • Writer's pictureAgnes wohl

Why EMDR and Somatic Therapies work so well for PTSD

Researchers from Yale University and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai conducted brain scans on 28 people with PTSD, revealing distinct differences in the processing of traumatic memories compared to neutral or sad ones. While sad memories engaged the hippocampus, the brain's memory organizer, traumatic memories did not involve this region. Instead, they activated the posterior cingulate cortex (P.C.C.), associated with introspection. The study suggests that traumatic memories are experienced differently, as "fragments of prior events" being experienced during the present moment. The findings challenge traditional PTSD treatments and support the idea that revisiting traumatic memories is crucial for therapy. Transforming such memories into organized narratives may aid in their memory formation in the hippocampus, making them resemble ordinary sad memories. This insight into distinct pathways for traumatic memories is considered groundbreaking in PTSD research.

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