Developed by Dr. Stephen Porges, the Safe and Sound Protocol (SSP) is a research-based therapy designed to reduce stress and auditory sensitivity while enhancing social engagement.

The SSP auditory intervention calms the physiological and emotional state, allowing for improved communication and more successful therapy.

  • Social and emotional difficulties
  • Auditory sensitivities
  • Anxiety and trauma
  • Inattention
  • Stressors that impact social engagement
  • Insomnia

Therapeutically Guided SSP Treatment

Interview and Assessment, 50 minutes

In our initial interview we will assess your autonomic nervous system (ANS) health, body awareness, and the impact of any trauma that may be impacting your current functioning. We will also discuss possible physical and emotional reactions you may experience during the SSP treatment. The assessment allows me to personalize your Safe Sound Protocol (SSP) treatment plan and prepare for our work.

SSP Treatment, 5 sessions

During these 30-60 minute sessions, I will be with you to provide safety and support for any physical and emotional responses experienced with the SSP. My presence allows your body and mind to create new ways of responding to past experiences. Together we will give your system cues of safety and capability as your body reacts to and expresses old memories of threat and replaces them with a new memory of safety.

Your child may show various physical and emotional responses during treatment, such as discomfort with the earphones and becoming instantly bored, or feeling happy and excited or more relaxed. My role is to recognize and be responsive to these signals in ways that support their need for cues of relational and emotional safety. Many children have an immediate positive response to the treatment, and there is also a period of adjustment and change. Sometimes more positive behaviors do not emerge immediately and there can even be a temporary increase in the problematic behaviors and emotional distress while the child’s nervous system adapts to the changes. Each child is different, and some children require shorter doses of the sound treatment over a longer period of time, for example 10 days rather than 5.

This process also supports memory reconsolidation, making it a supportive pair with trauma-informed clinical hypnotherapy.

Follow Up Session – 50 minutes

While many people have an immediate response to the SSP treatment, the effects also build over time, especially during the first 4-6 weeks. The follow-up session allows you to ask more questions about what you are experiencing, and what kinds of therapies and activities will continue to support your system.

The Safe & Sound Protocol treatment helps you to be more receptive to other ways you are engaging in healing, such as psychotherapy, somatic experiencing therapy, body therapies, singing or engaging in music, and more.

Possible Positive Outcomes

  • More spontaneous
  • Better sleep
  • Greater focus
  • More likely to reach out for physical touch and comfort
  • Ability to relax and just be
  • Greater tolerance for conversations with others
  • Greater tolerance for emotional vulnerability
  • Increased desire for intimacy
  • Better able to recognize state changes in the body and respond in helpful ways

email: amy@wildchildcounseling.com

What kinds of changes might we see in our child?

  • More eye contact
  • Increased singing and laughter
  • Better sleep
  • Greater awareness of hunger and satiety
  • Greater attention
  • More likely to seek physical touch and comfort
  • Greater emotional regulation
  • Less dependence on proprioception for self regulation (jumping on furniture, shoving into others, banging body against things, flopping around without body awareness)
  • More likely to express feelings
  • Better able to engage in play with others
  • Greater emotional tolerance
  • Less audio sensitivity