PTSD Retreats (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)

Post traumatic stress disorder, commonly referred to as PTSD, is a disorder that can develop when someone has seen or experienced a shocking, dangerous or frightening event. This trauma may come from a single experience or multiple traumatic events, such as childhood abuse, physical or sexual assault, a serious accident, war or military combat, terrorist attacks or a natural disaster.

It is normal to feel frightened by a traumatic experience, and for most people the fight, flight, or freeze response will settle after time. For some, the feelings of fear do not go away and this can lead to PTSD. Symptoms of PTSD may occur soon after the event, or appear years later.

Many people struggle through post-trauma symptoms, attempting to “tough it out” or distract from the anxiety, flashbacks, and other symptoms that can interfere with the ability to function in a healthy way. However, if left untreated, PTSD may cause other mental health issues and personal challenges including interruptions to daily functioning, work, health, and relationship breakdowns. Professional treatment for PTSD works to unravel the effects of the trauma and treat its source.

Due to the pervasive nature of the symptoms of PTSD, the opportunity to immerse yourself in a one-to-one healing retreat, provides the greatest opportunity for resolution of the trauma and its effects. Trauma therapy is our particular area of expertise at The Bay; we offer the most current, evidence-based therapeutic practice available, in a nurturing and peaceful environment.

12a PTSD

An Atmosphere of Support, Understanding and Compassion

When you are living with PTSD, it is easy to feel overwhelmed; it is common to experience anger, shame, guilt, depression, anxiety, or just feel numb. You may startle at loud noises or avoid going to certain places that trigger uncomfortable feelings. Your sleep may be interrupted and you may experience flashbacks to the traumatic incident.

A trauma-informed model of care is at the heart of all therapeutic retreats at The Bay. All of your therapists, doctors, practitioners, and care team are trained to be sensitive to underlying traumas and provide compassionate, informed care to those who are affected by trauma.

Returning to a Sense of Safety

Feeling safe, having a sense of well-being and a capacity to engage in healthy relationships with others, as well as a general ability to enjoy life, are all outcomes of successfully resolved trauma. Repairing and integrating a traumatised nervous system creates such an outcome.

Experience can change the brain in negative and positive ways. Just as damaging experiences change the brain in ways that are negative for us, new and positive experiences also change the brain in ways that help us to heal and grow.

At The Bay, we create a safe and held retreat environment, with expert care, that allows you to gently develop a sense of trust and well-being in yourself and engage in healthy relationships with others. This comfortable environment is one in which you can discuss and explore your feelings without fear.

A Customised Trauma Treatment Program for Your Individual Needs

Everybody is different. That means every case of trauma is individual, so it is important to us that we treat your case uniquely and provide the correct treatment program to fit your needs.

The neuroplasticity of the brain (the fact that the brain is malleable rather than fixed), means that healing the brain’s neural (nervous system) pathways is possible. When healthy integration happens in these neural networks trauma can be resolved. Trauma therapy needs to incorporate this integration in the nervous system to be effective.

Understanding and making meaning of the traumatic experience can be helpful in the resolution of the trauma, however, it is usually not enough. 

We use a body-oriented approach in dealing with trauma that addresses the body’s physical processes and states. Past experience tends to be unconsciously embodied in our present physicality. We need to have a felt experience of our sensations in the present moment to allow the emotional, physical and physiological effects of PTSD and other traumas to resolve.

Aspects of different therapeutic modalities such as psychotherapy, EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), Somatic Experiencing and cognitive behavioural therapy provide you with the tools to change the way you think and feel about your past experiences and the way these experiences will continue to shape you.

The combination of these therapies, with holistic modalities such as yoga, tai chi and chi kung, meditation, art therapy, acupuncture and massage, make for a deep, gentle and effective healing process.

Comfort and Luxury in Your Own Living Space

The Bay Retreats is a Single-Client Rehab. While in retreat with us you can relax and heal, rehabilitating in the peaceful environment of your own luxurious and comfortable residence. All practitioners and care staff will come to you on a pre-arranged schedule, with a cutting-edge therapeutic program that is designed to meet your specific needs and preferences.

Immersed in this dedicated healing environment, in the stunning natural surrounds of Byron Bay, you can slowly unwind and allow the expert therapeutic care and holistic treatments to ease your body, mind, and soul; finding the resilience and somatic integration you need, to create meaning from your experiences, and move forward in a healthy and satisfying life.


If you would like to know more about our customised retreats for PTSD treatment, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call +61 2 6684 4240 (Australia) or +1 310 220 0352 (USA).



  • American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders: DSM-5. Washington, D.C: American Psychiatric Association.
  • Burki, T. (2010). ‘Healing the scars of combat.’ The Lancet Psychiatry, 376(9754): 1727-28. Accessed 20/5/2016. (re:post-traumatic growth)
  • Kelly, A. & Garland, E.L. (2016). ‘Trauma-informed mindfulness-based stress reduction for female survivors of interpersonal violence: results from a stage 1 RCT.’ Journal of Clinical Psychology, 72(4):311-28. Accessed 25/05/2016. doi: 10.1002/jclp.22273.