Psychological Trauma Program


Lakeside Behavioral Health System provides specialized treatment for patients who are suffering from psychological trauma. The program is offered to adults and adolescents whose symptoms are related to having experienced traumatic events in their lives. Symptoms may include nightmares, flashbacks, panic attacks, mood swings, startle reflex, hypervigilence, depression, phobias, anxiety, isolative behavior, sleep disorders, psychic numbing, and other symptoms common in the aftermath of trauma.


  • Survivors of childhood physical, sexual, and emotional abuse
  • Victims of crime such as rape or robbery
  • Individuals who have experienced catastrophic loss, death or abandonment
  • Survivors of car accidents and man-made disasters
  • Persons with high-risk jobs including fire, police, and emergency and rescue workers
  • Survivors of natural disasters
  • Survivors of suicide attempts and/or suicide attempt of family member
  • Witnesses to traumatic events
  • Victims of domestic violence


The trauma treatment program includes didactic, cognitive-behavioral, and emotional integration modalities including Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). EMDR therapy focuses on memory (s) associated with traumatic events, neutralizing the memory and reducing the related symptoms. For further explanation of the origins and healing potential of EMDR, see via the internet or obtain the book Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing by Dr. Francine Shapiro, available at your local bookstore.

The program is offered for adult and adolescent patients in inpatient hospitalization, residential treatment and partial hospitalization. Treatment includes an educational component, assistance in identifying key life experiences, which have resulted in negative beliefs and self-defeating behaviors, and assistance in processing and resolving these issues in a safe, supportive environment. Patients are referred to the trauma program by their attending psychiatrist. Unique to the Child and Adolescent Program is the one-on-one EMDR and trauma-focused groups.


In a research initiative at Lakeside conducted in 2002, it was determined that out of 186 patients who completed EMDR in the Lakeside program, 148 (or 80%) reported a complete resolution and neutralization of the traumatic symptoms as well as a more positive cognitive reframing and perspective of the traumatic event.