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My experience with SSP

Posted by Hugh on June 20, 2022, at 12:29:23

Four months ago, I tried a treatment that targets the vagus nerve, which runs throughout the brain and all the way down to the intestines, impacting the auditory, facial, respiratory, cardiac, and digestive systems. The treatment is called SSP (Safe and Sound Protocol). This is auricular vagal nerve stimulation. SSP was developed by Stephen Porges, a psychiatry professor at Indiana University and at the University of North Carolina.

SSP is used to treat anxiety, depression, PTSD, ADHD, autism, insomnia, inflammatory conditions, chronic pain, autoimmune disorders. Over-ear headphones are used to listen to specially filtered and modulated vocal music, which stimulates and strengthens the muscles of the inner ear, which stimulates the vagus nerve.

I listened to five hours of filtered music -- one hour per day, Monday through Friday. Some people prefer to go at a slower pace. The music can be listened to in a therapist's office or at home.

I found listening to filtered music to be surprisingly tiring. I felt drowsy during each session, and started to nod off from time to time, but never fell asleep. I felt irritable for a few hours after a couple of the sessions. I told my therapist about this, and she said this wasn't anything to worry about -- that the training can temporarily make the brain tired and cranky. Since doing the training, I've made modest improvements in the following:

Better sleep
Better mood
More relaxed
Better digestion

I might go in for some booster sessions in a few months.

A detailed explanation of how the Safe and Sound Protocol works:

SSP testimonial for complex trauma and anxiety:

This is an introductory video about SSP:

Frequently asked questions about SSP:

There are SSP therapists in over 50 countries. To find one near you, submit this form. You'll be emailed a provider map and a password to access it.

You might not even have to meet in person with a therapist. Some SSP therapists do the initial assessment and follow-up over the phone or on Zoom, and email an audio file to download.




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