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Recovery Plus 68 Feb 2016 Society, noticed that while using alphamusic during therapy sessions her clients reported feeling more relaxed and “in the moment”. She stated that “clients remained focused and calmer, even when talking of quite traumatic events”, and while not being re-traumatised. In 2012, I met Richard Scanlan, a senior specialist therapist at Castle Craig Hospital who had been using alphamusic to great effect with his clients, in particular when used in conjunction with EMDR, eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing. Afterwards, he decided to utilise alphamusic in a group therapy setting, to see what further effect it might have in complement to his treatment of addiction and trauma clients. THE THERAPIST’S CASE HISTORY. Below, Richard Scanlan describes the effects of alphamusic on patients in a trauma group... “For five years, I had facilitated a trauma group at Castle Craig Hospital. The group addresses the complex issues of treating traumatic stress and addiction simultaneously in a 12-step rehab. Our members included combat veterans, survivors of sexual assault and physical violence. “The aim of the group was to learn skills to cope with the ‘here and now’ and problems associated with traumatic experience. Individual members receive cognitive behavioural therapy and EMDR outside the group setting. The group is seen as a sanctuary or a safe place to tolerate the effects of the past, not revisit them. Soon after setting up the group I discovered alphamusic. I had previously used ambient music to create a calm atmosphere at appropriate stages of the group as there is a strong psycho-education component in learning about the body’s reaction to stress and teaching mindfulness or self soothing strategies. I replaced Brian Eno’s ambient music with an alphamusic recording during one session and found a profound change in the patients’ response. I was intrigued. “A US soldier described it as ‘the education made more sense... I felt calmer… and was able to visualise a more positive future’. Other members reported similar findings. “I had been working with this patient individually and was aware of his deep complex trauma and diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder. He had received EMDR and it was not unheard-of for patients to have such moments of clarity. He stated that the music had a direct influence on him. I continued to use alphamusic and heard this consistently reiterated by other members. “I tried ambient music with the same group and they reported calmness but not the same profound sense they got from the alphamusic. So this is now integrated into the group work. We need more scientifically validated studies on the music...” Example of exhibitor at Recovery Plus: John will be ‘meeting and greeting’ and showing samples of his work at Recovery Plus in the Hilton, London on 20 May. For practitioners wishing to learn more about the application of alphamusic to help alleviate stress and related health issues, visit his website www.silenceofmusic. com or email info@ silenceofmusic.com


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