A Handbook for Understanding and Treating Those Traumatized as Children

Over the past decade, the human brain has become our new landscape for exploration. The advent of new imaging tools enables us to learn more about how the brain actually grows and functions under various conditions, both healthy and traumatic. Based upon research and clinical experience, Dr. Ziegler describes the impact of trauma on the developing brain, and implications for treatment. The research suggests that severe trauma affects how children perceive the world and how they respond to potential threats. These effects can be serious and lifelong; however, the message of this book is hopeful. Traumatized children can learn to control their responses to threat, and thus heal when provided with optimal structure, nurturing and appropriate therapy.

Dr. Dave Ziegler has seen, first hand, the effects on the brain of traumatic experiences during infancy and early childhood. As a result of his research and extensive experience with traumatized children, he describes in understandable terms the complex neural functioning of a very young brain. His work with trauma victims has exposed the formation of developmental psychopathology and the emotional triggers that are so resistant to change. His career is focused on ways to help traumatized individuals, and professionals who help them, learn new methods of healing deeply ingrained trauma.


Chapter 1: The Blueprint of the Human Brain
Chapter 2: The Role of the Brain in Adaptation
Chapter 3: Trauma and the Brain
Chapter 4: The Effects of Trauma on Perception and Internal Experience
Chapter 5: Trauma and Self-Perception
Chapter 6: How Traumatized Children Perceive Others
Chapter 7: The World View of traumatized Children
Chapter 8: From Neural Templates to Inner Working Models
Chapter 9: Four Case Examples–Understanding and Intervening
Chapter 10: The Primary Ingredients of Trauma Therapy