Trauma Related Books

Trauma Books: Our Top Five

by Isabella Coronel
Published: Updated:

Resources and Reading Materials for Trauma Recovery

Do you have trauma? Almost everyone does. Not dealing with your trauma can stop you from performing well in your life, and can make it difficult to function.

In this article, we look at five of our favorite books that can help you with the healing process from trauma. Remember that these trauma books are not a replacement for the help of professionals when it comes to healing trauma.

Keep reading to understand more about trauma, and whether Catalina Behavioral Health and our treatment programs might be a good fit to help you find lasting recovery from trauma!

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5 Powerful Books On Trauma Treatment

These books are considered the best books you can read to help you understand and treat your trauma, whether your trauma was caused by emotionally immature parents, emotional abuse, or by violence.

1) The Body Keeps The Score

The Body Keeps The Score - Bessel Van Der Kolk

The Body Keeps the Score is a book by psychiatrist and researcher Bessel van der Kolk. It provides us with an understanding of how trauma affects our bodies, minds, and communities. The book focuses on van der Kolk’s research into the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in both adults and children, as well as providing practical advice on how to create a comprehensive understanding of traumatic experiences and develop strategies for dealing with them.

The book begins by exploring the history of trauma and its effects on individuals and society. Van der Kolk then delves into his own research and clinical experience in treating PTSD. He discusses both physiological and psychological symptoms of trauma and how they often manifest in people’s lives. He also provides the reader with an in-depth look at the neurobiology of trauma, explaining why it is so hard to overcome its effects and providing a framework for understanding it on a deeper level.

The book also looks at treatment strategies for trauma survivors dealing with trauma. Van der Kolk proposes a holistic approach to treating trauma that involves understanding the underlying causes of traumatic experiences and developing healthy coping strategies. He also discusses approaches such as psychotherapy, medication, and creative therapies for those dealing with PTSD.

An Overview of the Many Impacts of Trauma

Van der Kolk discusses how traumatic experiences can impact entire communities as systemic trauma. He discusses the importance of creating safe environments for those who have experienced trauma and how understanding these experiences can help to create more compassionate societies.

The Body Keeps the Score is an essential read for anyone wanting to learn more about traumatic experiences and treating trauma. It provides invaluable information on recognizing signs of trauma, developing effective treatments, and understanding how it can affect our lives and the people around us. It is an important resource for anyone trying to deal with a traumatic experience, or for those wanting to help others work through their own trauma.

2) The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog

The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog

The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog and Other Stories From a Child Psychiatrist’s Notebook is an incredible book written by Bruce D. Perry, M.D., Ph.D., and Maia Szalavitz that takes readers into the world of child psychiatry and developmental trauma and provides valuable insight into how children’s minds work. Throughout the book, Dr. Perry and Ms. Szalavitz share their own experiences as well as case studies from which readers can gain insight into how children process trauma, fear, and other emotions in various ways.

Dr. Perry and Ms. Szalavitz discuss how trauma can affect a child’s psychological development, how it is diagnosed, and how professionals can help when a child experiences traumatic events. In the second part of the book, they delve deeper into different techniques for working with traumatized children, such as play therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy.

Dr. Perry and Ms. Szalavitz’s also give insights into their own experiences with young patients over their careers in psychiatry. In this section, readers are given examples from case studies of how Dr. Perry and Ms. Szalavitz have helped children cope with traumatic stress, as well as how they’ve seen the effects of trauma on a child’s development over time.

The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog is an incredibly informative book that serves not only to provide information about the effects of trauma on a child’s development but also to offer hope and guidance on how to help children who have experienced developmental trauma. It is an essential read for anyone interested in learning more about childhood psychology or working with traumatized children.

3) Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma

Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma, by Peter Levine, is a landmark book in the field of trauma therapy. In it, Levine examines and explains the often misunderstood effects of trauma on our bodies and minds. He argues that while many people experience troubling physical symptoms like tension and pain after suffering an overwhelming event or shock, they are often unaware of the psychological and emotional components of trauma.

To help readers understand how to treat trauma, Levine introduces them to his Somatic Experiencing (SE) method. SE is an innovative approach that uses physical sensations to access stored traumatic memories and process them in a safe, controlled environment.

In Waking the Tiger, Levine chronicles his journey to discovering and refining the SE method, which he first developed while working with survivors of war in Vietnam. He describes how the body’s natural healing energies can be released when traumatic memories are allowed to emerge and be processed on a neurological level. This process helps people regain control of their bodies and minds, enabling them to cope more effectively with trauma-related symptoms.

The Path to Getting Out of Trauma Response Patterns

The book also explores how our culture’s inability to meaningfully address and process traumatic events has caused many of us to become stuck in fight, flight, or freeze reactions. Levine argues that the only way to move beyond these responses is by learning to recognize and honor our instinctive sensations when they arise. This requires us to practice being present with our bodies, respecting and listening to the sensations they offer. By doing this, we can gradually release the stored tensions of trauma and begin to heal on a deeper level.

A central theme of Waking the Tiger is that we each have an innate ability to recover from traumatic events. Levine argues that while it may take effort and time, anyone is capable of healing from trauma when they use a body-oriented approach. To support this belief, Levine provides readers with numerous examples of how his Somatic Experiencing method has helped people restore balance to their lives after enduring traumatic experiences.

4) The Myth of Normal

The Myth of Normal, by Gabor Mate, is a powerful and thought-provoking book that examines our current mental health crisis. Mate’s analysis of the state of modern mental health challenges readers to think about their own understanding and experience of mental illness. Through his exploration of the history of psychiatry, psychology, pharmacology, and more, he reveals the ways in which our society has failed to create a clear understanding of mental health and how it is affected by social forces.

Mate brings together various theories, research, and anecdotes to support his argument that we have reached a state where most people are struggling to cope with their mental health issues, yet there is still no unified approach to treating them. He is critical of the traditional medical model for diagnosing and treating mental illness, which he believes fails to recognize the complexity of mental health and its many contributing factors. Instead, Mate proposes a more holistic approach that takes into account social and environmental influences, as well as neurobiological aspects.

Mate’s examination of modern psychiatry is eye-opening and thought-provoking. He explains how the system of treating mental illness has been built on outdated ideas, such as the idea that a person’s psychological problems are rooted in their personal failings or weaknesses. This viewpoint ignores the potential benefits of recognizing underlying social issues, like poverty and trauma, which can contribute to mental health struggles.

5) Getting Past Your Past

Getting Past Your Past

The book Getting Past Your Past by Francine Shapiro is a groundbreaking self-help book that uses cutting-edge therapy techniques from Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) to help readers take control of their lives. In this book, Dr. Shapiro discusses how our minds store the memories of our past experiences, and how those memories can affect our present and future. She introduces the concept of EMDR therapy and explains how it can be used to help people heal from psychological trauma.

Dr. Shapiro provides readers with a comprehensive overview of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing therapy, including its history, development, clinical applications, and the research that supports its effectiveness. In addition, she includes step-by-step instructions on how to use the various techniques associated with EMDR and provides a variety of case studies to demonstrate their efficacy. While some readers may be intimidated by the scientific language used throughout the book, Dr. Shapiro’s clear explanations make it accessible to all readers regardless of their background knowledge of this topic.

The book is a valuable resource for anyone looking to understand and work through past traumas, as well as for mental health providers who are interested in using EMDR for complex trauma with their clients. Dr. Shapiro’s thoughtful explanations and step-by-step guidance make it easy for readers to get started on their journey of healing. In addition, she discusses the importance of finding a qualified EMDR therapist and offers tips on how to find one.

Using These Books In Your Own Life

Reading Trauma Related Books

Taking the time to read and incorporate the messages from these books can help you with healing trauma, including generational trauma. But remember, there is no replacement for the help of trained professionals when it comes to trauma and PTSD treatment.

If you are struggling with patterns of trauma or complex trauma, Catalina Behavioral Health is proud and honored to be a top choice for trauma among Arizona treatment providers and throughout the Southwest.

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Effective Programs for PTSD and Complex Trauma Treatment

Reading the books outlined in this article will give you a solid insight into what trauma is, and may help you to address your own trauma. If you have experienced serious trauma, though, you are unlikely to be able to heal by reading these books alone. Do not despair, however, as you have found the right place to turn!

Speak with our compassionate team at Catalina Behavioral Health now to get options for recovery from trauma, PTSD, and the memories that can run roughshod over your life. All calls are completely confidential, so please reach out now for assistance and advice!

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