Derealization Therapy Toronto

At times of extreme distress or anxiety we can sometimes feel out of touch with reality. This phenomenon is called derealization and depersonalization and is a form of dissociation. During an episode of derealization or depersonalization you may feel disconnected with yourself, your body, your environment and the objects around you may not feel real. Such episodes can be extremely disturbing and distressing for the individuals who experience them. Part of the distress stems from the fact that such people do not lose touch with reality, but rather are fully aware of how strange their perceptions are at the moment. Often they feel helpless and out of control of their body during such episodes. While the root cause of why these episodes happen is unknown, it is usually a combination of environmental and biological causes such as growing up in a traumatic environment with a genetic predisposition to mental illness or other dissociative disorders. Different forms of psychotherapy have all been shown to be effective in treating derealization/ depersonalization including but not limited to CBT, DBT, art therapy, music therapy, family therapy and EMDR or other trauma focused therapies. Oftentimes these therapies aim to help the individual ground back to reality and identify triggers which cause the dissociation. 

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