WHAT IS TRAUMA DEBRIEFING?
Trauma debriefing can be described as early interventions (as soon as possible after a traumatic event took place) or non-clinical forms of secondary prevention for traumatised people. There are a variety of different approaches used, including information and advice (e.g. psycho-education), self help groups, concrete and direct help (e.g. housing, financial assistance), psychological debriefing, crisis intervention, structured trauma counselling and brief psychotherapy to name just some.
The debriefing process is designed to enable the victim to re-experience the incident in a controlled and safe environment in order to make sense of and become reconciled to the traumatic incident.
IS TRAUMA DEBRIEFING DIFFERENT FROM COUNSELLING?
Yes, there is a difference. Debriefing is not counselling or therapy nor is it a substitute for counselling or therapy. Whilst using some of the basic communication skills used in counselling, it is very different both in content and style from counselling. Firstly, the debriefing is highly structured with the debriefer guiding you through a series of stages, looking at the traumatic event from different perspectives.
Debriefing usually stands alone as a single psychological crisis intervention and is not part of ongoing therapy. Where deemed necessary or appropriate, follow-up sessions may be suggested by your trauma debriefer.
HEALING EFFECTS OF TRAUMA DEBRIEFING?
- Re-establish hope
- Victims realise that their feelings are normal and temporary
- Establish universality
- Provides ventilation and catharsis
- Group cohesion is healing
- Provides information to improve the healing process