Polyvagal Theory & Polyvagal-Informed Therapy
Polyvagal theory was developed by Stephen Porges, a clinical psychologist and neuropsychology researcher, who proposed that the autonomic nervous system (vagus nerve) plays a significant role in regulating emotional and social behaviors, particularly in response to threat or safety.
Deb Dana is credited with developing the application of polyvagal theory in therapy, specifically in the form of "Polyvagal-Informed Therapy" or "Polyvagal-Guided Therapy". She was the first to develop a model for how to use Porges' theory in therapy. Dr. Porges has been an advisor and collaborator with Dana in her work.
In the context of DID, polyvagal therapy aims to help individuals with DID regulate their nervous system and improve their ability to process traumatic memories, regulate emotions, and improve social interactions.
Therapists trained in polyvagal therapy work with clients to identify and change patterns of physiological arousal that are associated with dissociation and traumatic memories. Techniques such as diaphragmatic breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, and yoga are often used to help clients regulate their nervous system. Additionally, therapists may also focus on building a sense of safety and trust in the therapeutic relationship as a way of helping clients feel more secure and better able to process traumatic experiences.
Polyvagal-informed therapy is a relatively new approach to treating DID and its effectiveness has not been widely studied. However, some practitioners have reported positive results using this approach, particularly in terms of reducing symptoms such as dissociation, anxiety, and trauma-related symptoms.
--This article written with a big boost by ChatGPT.