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Dr. Paula Jo Hruby and Suzanne Peroutka of Labyrinth Counseling and Consulting Center to be Featured on CUTV News Radio

Dr. Paula Jo Hruby

Suzanne Peroutka

NAPERVILLE, ILLINOIS, UNITED STATES, August 13, 2019 / -- Trauma occurs with an overwhelming event. It can be a car accident, natural catastrophe, adverse childhood event(s), interpersonal violence or abuse, bullying at school/work, or military combat, to name a few.

When these intense experiences happen and continue to interfere in a person’s life, a mental health condition known as post-traumatic stress disorder, PTSD, can develop. With PTSD, individuals suffer from a variety of anxious and depressive symptoms such as hyper-vigilance, insomnia, intrusive thoughts, flashbacks, or nightmares, others can't get out of bed, struggle with chronic pain, fatigue, lack of motivation, dread, or depression.

PTSD is related to a dysregulation in the nervous system. It's about the nervous system, not the event. In other words, the individual’s nervous system is overwhelmed and so highly activated that it cannot repair itself. Using the metaphor of a computer, this is a software problem, not a hardware problem. When regulation is restored, the software program is debugged. Then, the nervous system can bounce back, usually, with a higher level of resilience. This is posttraumatic growth.

Navigating PTSD requires the guidance of experienced trauma specialists. Dr. Paula Jo Hruby and Suzanne Peroutka are the co-founders of Labyrinth Counseling and Consulting Center, where they specialize in providing experiential therapies to treat individuals suffering from PTSD.

“We work from a strength-based perspective, not from a pathology perspective,” says Peroutka. “Within every trauma are pockets of resiliency, strength, and movement. We look for those places. We ask: ‘What has this person done right to survive?’ Curiosity and fear cannot coexist in the same moment, so we keep encouraging curiosity.”

“We chose a labyrinth as the symbol for our counseling center because there's only one path in and one path out, unlike a maze,” says Dr. Hruby. “Even though it may feel like you're lost, you're still moving toward the center of the issue to resolve the overwhelm and dysregulation.”

Dr. Hruby and Peroutka are both trauma specialists, having first met working at a shelter for abused women. Today, they focus on helping people with traumatic overwhelm through numerous options for therapy.

“The hard cases come to us--where the clients are stuck and nothing seems to be changing. We can help because we go beyond sitting and talking with the client,” says Dr. Hruby. “With PTSD, the nervous system can’t recover by itself. Experiential therapies help the body regulate the nervous system, instead of just working cognitively and hoping the nervous system will settle down.” We have found that it is necessary to go beyond talking because the difficult memories are held in the amygdala--the primitive part of the brain, which responds better to experiential therapies. This works more from the bottom up than the top down.

Labyrinth Counseling & Consulting Center incorporates EMDR, Somatic Experiencing, art therapy, play therapy, guided imagery, Heart-Centered Hypnotherapy, and yoga therapy into the therapeutic work. These experiential modalities allow Dr. Hruby and Peroutka to access the part of the brain where the trauma is stored, the primitive brain of the amygdala.

“You need to titrate the traumatic information or else you can re-traumatize the client,” says Peroutka. “With experiential therapies like art, hypnosis, Somatic Experiencing, or EMDR, you don't overwhelm the nervous system. It's a gentler way of helping someone move through trauma.”

CUTV News Radio will feature Dr. Paula Jo Hruby and Suzanne Peroutka in an interview with Doug Llewelyn on August 15th at 4pm EDT

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If you have any questions for our guest, please call (347) 996-3389

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Lou Ceparano
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