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5 grounding techniques to ease symptoms of trauma

Updated: Jan 15, 2023

In the previous blog post, we looked at how we respond to trauma, how we process it afterwards and why some of us continue to experience trauma response long after the difficult experience has passed. As hard as we try, sometimes we cannot avoid triggers all together. Here are some techniques to alleviate symptoms.

1. Change of body temperature

A change in body temperature can help us to be more aware of our present sensory experience and bring us back when flashbacks occur. This can be achieve through a hot shower or having an icy drink.

2. Strong scents & tastes

Similar to a change of body temperature, strong scents and tastes can help us ground ourselves. It may be helpful to keep scent bags, like lavender or mint at hands, or lemon drops.

3. Breathing exercises

Breathing exercises or body scans help us slow down our hearth rate, reduce blood pressure and allow us to pause so we can be more aware of our bodily sensation. You can engage in a simple breathing excises by tracing your fingers. As you trace from your hand to your finger tip, breath in, as you trace down from your finger tip, breath out.

4. 12345 grounding exercise

Take time to observe your sensations. name 1 thing you can taste, 2 things you can smell, 3 things you can hear, 4 things you can see and 5 things you can feel at the moment. This exercise aims at helping you to be aware of your 5 senses and your environment.

5. Creating a playlist for yourself

Music has the power to put us at a different frame of mind. Having a thoughtful playlist specifically curated for when you need a change of mood, as opposed to having more generic playlist of all of your favourite songs, can be a great self-care project!

When you are ready to process your trauma, your EMDR therapist will equip you with more grounding techniques to support you through your trauma processing journey. To learn more about EMDR, click here!

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