Bessel van der Kolk wrote the book “The Body Keeps the Score”. The book is about trauma and its effects on the human body and mind. The book comprehensively overviews how its affects the brain, body, and behavior. It also tell insights into the latest research and treatment methods for trauma.
Van der Kolk explains how traumatic experiences can disrupt the brain’s normal functioning and can lead to a wide range of symptoms, such as anxiety, depression, addiction, and physical illnesses. He also describes how trauma affects the body’s autonomic nervous system, which is responsible for regulating physiological responses to stress and danger.
The book also explores the various treatment methods that have been developed to help individuals recover from trauma. Van der Kolk advocates for a holistic approach to treatment that includes a combination of talk therapy, medication, and alternative therapies like yoga, meditation, and neurofeedback.
There are three main parts and main three lessons from this book. Here are the three parts included in this book.
Part 1: The Beginning
The author explains how Janet and others in the late 1800s discovered knowledge about trauma and mental health. Van der Kolk’s early research on veterans’ distorted perceptions, which he found in Rorschach tests, helped him develop a trauma lens when he started working with survivors of incest.
Part 2: Brain and Trauma
The author explains how the brain’s adaptive response to stress leads to action, and how trauma can overwhelm this healthy adaptive response. The author emphasizes the importance of taking action to heal trauma and how top-down regulation strengthened with activities such as mindfulness meditation and yoga.
Part 3: Childhood is Important
He also covers the impact of adverse childhood experiences, notably child abuse, and neglect, on the developing brain. One can learn self-regulation from early caregivers, and early trauma changes the way the brain is wired.
After talking about the main parts here are the three lessons that you can take from our summary book.
Lesson 1: Important of EMDR
EMDR is an effective technique to help trauma patients recover by healing them to integrate their traumatic memories. By following a finger and audio cues from a medical professional, victims can make new associations and re-imagine memories in a helpful way. EMDR helps them add these events to a memory bank instead of thinking they’re real.
Lesson 2: Yoga and Trauma
Trauma victims can benefit from yoga to connect their minds and body. Yoga helps them understand their emotions and how their body handles them, allowing them to explore and accept difficult feelings. This helps them deal with their emotions instead of trying to bury them. It only puts a bandage on the issue.
Lesson 3: Mindfulness and Surrounding People
Mindfulness and a supportive network of family and friends are essential for healing. Mindfulness helps trauma victims confront their demons and calm the impacts of its on their minds and body. Relationships with family, friends and medical professionals provide a support system that victims can turn to for help. Local AA meetings, religious groups, and veterans’ organizations can also provide helpful connections.