trauma therapy types

5 Transformative Trauma Therapy Types for Healing: A Guide to Overcoming Pain

In a world where healing is crucial, understanding trauma therapy types becomes paramount. Unravel the transformative power they hold in the journey to recovery.

5 Transformative Trauma Therapy Types for Healing

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy 

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a therapeutic approach focused on embracing distressing thoughts and feelings rather than avoiding them. This mindfulness-based technique encourages individuals to commit to actions aligned with their values, fostering psychological flexibility. By acknowledging pain and committing to meaningful actions, individuals learn to navigate trauma with resilience.

The benefits of ACT are manifold. This therapy cultivates mindfulness, enhancing emotional regulation and reducing avoidance behaviors. By promoting acceptance, it empowers individuals to break free from the shackles of trauma and lead a purpose-driven life.

Acceptance & Commitment Therapy on Substance Abuse Disorders

This study focuses on the effectiveness of Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT), a “third-wave” behavioral treatment for substance use disorders (SUDs). The term “third-wave” distinguishes it from traditional cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). The study conducted a meta-analysis of 10 randomized controlled trials involving 1386 participants with SUDs.

ACT aims to transition individuals from psychological inflexibility to flexibility, emphasizing values-based actions. The meta-analysis revealed a small benefit post-treatment and a medium benefit at follow-up. Approximately 61% of the ACT group had above-average outcomes compared to other treatments post-treatment, increasing to 67% at follow-up.

In a detailed study by Luoma et al., adding ACT to residential SUD treatment produced better outcomes, including increased abstinence rates and engagement in continuing care. The meta-analysis also highlighted similar effects between ACT and intensive 12-step facilitation in methadone-maintenance treatment and improved 18-month abstinence rates compared to CBT in female prisoners.

Here are the fundamental processes of Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT):


Rather than resisting or attempting to control unwanted emotions, acceptance involves willingly recognizing and being aware of these feelings without trying to alter or ignore them.

Cognitive Defusion

Defusion techniques, like repeating the name of a feared object until it loses its intimidation, focus on changing the interaction with specific thoughts. 

Being Present

This core process emphasizes voluntarily embracing internal and external factors, fostering heightened awareness of the present moment.

Self as Context

This concept aims to help individuals detach from rigid self-beliefs, fostering a more flexible self-view. 


Different from goals, values represent the meaningful and purposeful principles or beliefs in a person’s life. In ACT, values offer behavioral direction and motivation. 

Committed Action

This final process involves making behavioral changes that support a person’s chosen values through goal-setting and pattern-building. 

Cognitive Behavior Therapy 

Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) aims to identify and modify negative thought patterns that contribute to emotional distress and maladaptive behaviors. By challenging and restructuring these thoughts, individuals can change their emotional responses and behaviors. CBT equips individuals with practical coping strategies to manage trauma-related challenges.

CBT’s benefits extend beyond symptom relief. It empowers individuals with lifelong skills to navigate future stressors, promoting lasting recovery. The cognitive restructuring inherent in CBT fosters a positive mindset, enabling individuals to face traumatic experiences with resilience and adaptive coping mechanisms.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy 

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) combines cognitive-behavioral techniques with mindfulness strategies. Originally developed for individuals with borderline personality disorder, DBT has proven effective in treating various mental health conditions, including trauma. DBT focuses on developing skills in distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness.

The benefits of DBT extend to improved emotional regulation and enhanced interpersonal relationships. By learning to tolerate distress and manage intense emotions, individuals undergoing trauma therapy find a path to stability and a more balanced life.

Dual Diagnosis Treatment

Dual Diagnosis Treatment addresses individuals dealing with both substance abuse and mental health disorders simultaneously. Recognizing the interconnected nature of these challenges, this integrated approach combines therapeutic interventions with substance abuse treatment. By addressing both aspects concurrently, individuals receive comprehensive care tailored to their unique needs.

The benefits of dual diagnosis treatment are profound. It not only breaks the cycle of substance abuse but also addresses the underlying mental health issues contributing to trauma. This holistic approach promotes sustained recovery, offering individuals a chance to rebuild their lives.

Adjustment Disorder Treatment

Adjustment Disorder Treatment focuses on helping individuals cope with significant life changes and the emotional distress that follows. This type of therapy aims to enhance coping mechanisms and resilience, enabling individuals to adapt to challenging situations more effectively.

The benefits of adjustment disorder treatment lie in fostering adaptive coping strategies and preventing chronic mental health issues. By providing support during transitional periods, this therapy empowers individuals to navigate change, promoting mental well-being and preventing the escalation of trauma-related symptoms.


These trauma therapy types explore transformative methods to overcome pain and build resilience. The path to recovery begins with understanding and embracing these diverse therapeutic approaches.

Connect with Renewed Hope at COPE Psychological Center 

Take the first step toward healing. Contact COPE Psychological Center for compassionate trauma therapy tailored to your needs.

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