This workshop will focus on a new, evidence-based model for treating youth trauma and trauma-related issues and concurrent substance use provides a positive, present-focused approach that differs from traditional addictions models. Youth and young adults who are accessing services for PTSD, ADHD, anxiety or depression may be using substances as a coping strategy, particularly if they have experienced trauma, abuse or neglect. Addiction and trauma may not be identified in the initial screening, and this jeopardizes the achievement of treatment goals.
This workshop will explore the intersection of trauma, trauma-related disorder and substance use among adolescents and young adults. It will provide an introduction to the Seeking Safety model (Najavits, 2002), explore its treatment principles and demonstrate the application of some of the 25 different modules in work with youth and young adults in clinical settings.
Participants are encouraged to bring a clinical case, without identifying information, in order to demonstrate how Seeking Safety can be integrated into a trauma informed treatment plan.
- Explore the role of substance use to manage intrusive images, hyperarousal and hypervigilance, dissociation, anxiety, relationship challenges, impulsivity, rage, shame and mood.
- Incorporate substance-specific (alcohol, cannabis, non-medical over the counter and prescribed medication use) information into the clinical decision-making process.
- Determine when to integrate Seeking Safety into the treatment plan and learn how to present this to the client.
- Practice applying one of the three frequently used modules to clinical practice.
This workshop is suitable for mental health service providers in Ontario working with young people from diverse populations: urban, suburban, rural, remote, Anglo and Franco-Ontarians, military families, newcomers to Canada, first generation Canadians, Metis and First Nations.