262 Commercial Street, North Sydney, NS B2A 1B8

East Coast Psychotherapy & Trauma Clinic

How We Help

The team at East Coast Psychotherapy & Trauma Clinic is trained in a variety of therapeutic modalities to help you achieve your therapeutic goals. We specialize in Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR), Gottman Method, Exposure Therapy, and Cognitive Processing Theory.

Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR)

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a type of therapy intended to help people who have had traumatic experiences in their lifetime. During EMDR, a therapist will take you through guided eye movements and other forms of bilateral stimulation (e.g., tapping or tones) while you recall the traumatic event or negative thoughts you are seeking support for. Recalling the events or emotions this way can help reduce the distress associated with them. It is used for a variety of mental health concerns, including PTSD, other traumas, anxiety and depression. The goals of EMDR include reducing the intensity of symptoms, improved emotional regulation, and increased self-esteem.

Interested in learning more about EMDR therapy?

Exposure Therapy

Exposure therapy is a type of cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) intended to help overcome fears and anxieties. To do this, you are gradually exposed to the feared object or situations in a safe and controlled environment. Together with the therapist, you will determine a gradual hierarchy of the feared situations or objects that you work through over time. It is commonly used for anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and PTSD. However, it may be used in other situations. Exposure therapy can help reduce the intensity of anxiety, improve emotional regulation, and ultimately lead to greater self-esteem.

Somatic Experiencing

Somatic Experiencing (SE) is a body-oriented therapy for healing trauma and other stress disorders.The SE approach releases traumatic shock, which is key to transforming PTSD and the wounds of emotional and early developmental attachment trauma. It offers a framework to assess where a person is “stuck” in the fight, flight or freeze responses and provides clinical tools to resolve these fixated physiological states. To learn more about SE, click here.

Trauma-Informed Stabilization Treatment

TIST or Trauma-Informed Stabilization Treatment was developed to provide a trauma-informed approach to the challenges of treating self-destructive behaviour. Based on theoretical principles drawn from the neuroscience research on trauma and structural dissociation theory, TIST offers a treatment approach that integrates mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, ego state techniques, and Internal Family Systems. It has been used successfully to address the challenges of treating individuals with diagnoses of complex PTSD, borderline personality disorder, bipolar disorder, addictive and eating disorders, and dissociative disorders. Because it contextualizes self-destructive behaviour as trauma-related, patients feel less pathologized, increasing their motivation to overcome self-destructive impulses as a step toward overcoming trauma.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a form of psychotherapy that is focused on helping individuals identify and manage the underlying causes of their mental and emotional struggles. CBT is a highly effective treatment method used to reduce symptoms associated with a range of mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, panic attacks, phobias, eating disorders, and substance abuse. By examining the relationship between thoughts, feelings, and behaviours, CBT can help individuals gain insight into how their thoughts create their feelings and behaviours, thereby empowering them to make lasting changes in their lives.

Emotion Focused Therapy

Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT) is a powerful, evidence-based approach to counselling, focused on helping individuals recognize and process their emotions. By exploring underlying patterns of emotion, clients gain insight into their behaviour and the connections between their thoughts, feelings, and actions. EFT is especially beneficial for those struggling with depression, anxiety, trauma, and relationship issues. Through this therapy, clients can learn to express and manage their emotions in a healthy way, resulting in improved mental health and overall wellbeing.

Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT)

Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) is a type of cognitive-behavioural therapy commonly used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety, and other trauma. CPT works by focusing on changing thoughts and beliefs related to the distressing traumatic experience or event. When working with a therapist, you’ll identify and challenge negative thought patterns and work to replace them with more balanced thoughts. Oftentimes, you’ll write about the event so that you can process and make sense of the traumatic experience. As a result of CPT, you may experience improved emotional regulation, increased self-esteem, and greater control over your emotions.

Mindfulness-Based Therapy

Mindfulness-based therapy is a therapeutic approach that integrates mindfulness and cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT). It aims to help individuals cultivate awareness and acceptance of their thoughts, emotions, and experiences. The goal of mindfulness-based therapy is to reduce the distress caused by thoughts, emotions and experiences to improve overall well-being. The exact approach will depend on your needs and therapist. However, you will be encouraged to engage in meditation and/or mindfulness practices. This may include breathing exercises, mindful movement, and body scans. As part of mindfulness-based therapy, you may be asked to work towards identifying and challenging negative thought patterns so you can develop positive coping skills. This modality is used for a variety of mental health concerns, including anxiety, stress, depression, and chronic pain. By creating an increased sense of connection to the self and others, you can experience a greater sense of purpose in life.

Narrative Therapy

With narrative therapy, you will focus in on the stories you create about yourself, your experiences, and others. To create change, you will work towards rewriting these stories to be more empowering and positive. This can ultimately impact your overall quality of life and the strength of relationships you have with others. With a therapist, you will explore your life experiences to uncover how they have shaped both your beliefs and identity. Narrative therapy is often used for anxiety, depression, and trauma but may be used for a variety of other mental health concerns. As a result of narrative therapy, you may feel a greater sense of control of your life and have a new perspective on past experiences.

Gottman Method

Some of our therapists are trained in the Gottman Method. This method is used in couples therapy with the focus being on building trust, enhancing intimacy, and developing better communication. With the help of a therapist, you will work together to identify and address patterns of negative communication and behaviours contributing to challenges in the relationship. The specific experience will vary depending on the therapist and your needs, however, may include role-playing and guided conversations. By going through these scenarios, you can start to improve communication and conflict resolution skills. The Gottman Method is used for a variety of relationship challenges, including conflict related to sex and intimacy, parenting and family dynamics, and communication challenges.

Exposure & Response Prevention Therapy

Exposure & Response Prevention (ERP) therapy is a type of cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT). It is often used to help individuals with OCD and related conditions. With ERP therapy, you are exposed to situations or objects that cause a trigger and work towards reducing resulting compulsive or ritualistic behaviours. Similar to exposure therapy, you work with a therapist to identify a hierarchy of situations you can be exposed to over time. You start with the least anxiety-provoking situation and work towards exposure to the highest anxiety-provoking situation. When you are exposed to these experiences, you aim to reduce compulsive and ritualistic behaviours and gradually learn to tolerate the discomfort associated with exposure to the feared stimuli.

WPATH Trained Clinicians

Some of our team is World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) trained. WPATH is an international organization that promotes evidence-based care, education, research, and advocacy for transgender and gender-diverse individuals. This training is meant to ensure that healthcare professionals understand the specific needs and experiences of transgender and gender-diverse individuals. Our team members have undergone training on how to provide gender-affirming care including areas such as gender-affirming therapy, gender-confirmation surgeries, and other mental health supports.

Meet Our Team

Beth Toomey with her dogs. East Coast Psychotherapy & Trauma Clinic is a dog-friendly clinic

We Are A Dog Friendly Clinic

Dogs are a human’s best friend. If you have a furry family member you’d like to accompany you during your in-person therapy appointment, let us know!

Questions? Send Us A Message.