Increasingly horses are becoming trauma healers through the fast growing profession of equine assisted therapy. Trauma responses are the human mind’s attempt to cope with the unimaginable. In some survivors, trauma can produce post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with symptoms ranging from depression, anxiety, and drug and alcohol abuse to rage, dissociation and thoughts of suicide. These occur because the stress accompanying traumatic events demands coping strategies of the individual that far exceed their capabilities. Equine assisted therapy offers hope and encouragement for trauma survivors.
Equine assisted therapy is an emerging form of therapeutic intervention in which horses are used as tools for clients to gain self-understanding and emotional growth. Equine assisted therapy is a type of animal assisted therapy, a field of mental health that recognizes the importance of the bond between animals and humans and the potential for emotional healing that can occur when a relationship is formed between the two species.
Equine assisted therapy pairs horses with people to overcome emotional issues, conditions, & physical trauma – similar to traditional psychological counseling. Horses are perfect for this work because they are teachers of self-awareness. Horses give us immediate and honest feedback about ourselves by reading our verbal and non-verbal communication. They often “mirror” back to us our feelings of anxiety, sadness, happiness, trust and a variety of other feelings. For many clients, working with horses can help them to discover and overcome unhealthy patterns and behaviors.
Horses offer hope and encouragement to those who interact with them. The benefits of using equine assisted therapy in combination with other therapies give the clients the opportunity to actively process, learn and practice the necessary tools so they are able to work through issues, break free from destructive life patterns and build a strong foundation of emotional and physical sobriety.
Whether your trauma stems from past or present experiences, one-time or prolonged events, you shouldn’t have to face your trauma alone. You are a survivor. Now let us help you learn how to thrive. Contact us now to learn more about how Creative Care helps trauma survivors reclaim their lives.