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Body memories or somatic memories



What is a body memory?

http://www.sidran.org/ See: Resources / glossary

According to SIDRAN "a person who was raped may later experience pelvic pain similar to that experienced at the time of the event. This type of bodily sensation may occur in any sensory mode: tactile, taste, smell, kinesthetic, or sight. Body memories may be diagnosed as somatoform disorder. See also somatic memory."



Handbook on Sensitive Practice for Health Professionals: Lessons from Women Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse

"Research on traumatic memory supports the concept of “somatic” or “body memory.” Traumatic memories may be encoded as part of the non-verbal “non-declarative” memory, independent of normal language-based memory. Such traumatic memories can be triggered by stress in the present that reminds the person of past trauma, and can be experienced as “somatic” or “body memory."


Body memories and survivors of childhood abuse



Body memories




Retreived from :What Your Child Remembers -- New discoveries about early memory and how it affects us
By Robin Grille
Source: Sydney’s Child, Volume 14, No 4 (May, 2003)

Damasio, Antonio (2000) ‘The Feeling of What Happens – Body, Emotion, and the Making of Consciousness’. Vintage.

De Bellis M, et al (1999) ‘Developmental Traumatology Part II’. Biological Psychiatry Vol 45, pp. 1271-1284.

Patten-Hitt, Emma (2000) ‘Childhood Abuse Changes the Developing Brain’. Cerebrum, Fall 2000, pp. 50-67.

Perry B.D., Pollard R.A., Blakley T.L., Baker W.L. and Vigilante D., (1995) ‘Childhood Trauma, the Neurobiology of Adaptation, and Use-Dependent Development of the Brain: How States Become Traits’. Infant Mental Health Journal Vol 16(4), pp. 271-291.

Perry, B. D. (1997) ‘Incubated in Terror: Neurodevelopmental Factors in the Cycle of Violence’. In: Osofsky JD ‘Children in a Violent Society’. The Guilford Press.

Perry, B. D. (1999) ‘Memories of Fear: How the Brain Stores and Retrieves Physiologic States’. In: Goodwin J. and Attias R., ‘Splintered Reflections: Images of the Body in Trauma’. Basic Books.

Rothschild, Babette (2000) ‘The Body Remembers – The Psychophysiology of Trauma and Trauma Treatment’. WW Norton & Co.

Schore, Allan (1994) ‘Affect Regulation and the Origin of the Self: The Neurobiology of Emotional Development’. Lawrence Erlbaum Assoc. NJ.

Teicher, Martin H (2002) ‘The Neurobiology of Child Abuse’. Scientific American, March 2002, pp. 68-75.

Van der Kolk, Bessel (1994) ‘The Body Keeps the Score: Memory and the Evolving Psychobiology of Posttraumatic Stress’. Harvard Review of Psychiatry, Vol 1, pp. 253-265.




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