Black Dog Institute Statistics:

  • The most common mental illnesses are depression and anxiety, along with substance abuse.

·      Australia has the 2nd highest rate of depression per capita in the world and the 2nd highest medicated country per capita for anxiety in the world. 

·      One in five Australians aged 16-85 experience a mental illness.  

·      One in seven Australians will experience depression in their lifetime. The World Health Organisation estimates that depression will be the number one health concern by 2030.

·      Almost half the population will experience a mental illness in their lifetime. The onset of mental illness is typically around mid-to-late adolescence and those aged 18-24 years have the highest prevalence of mental illness than any other age group.

·      It should also be noted over half of the people diagnosed with a mental health disorder do not actively seek appropriate treatment.

·      Every day, at least six Australians die from suicide and a further thirty people will attempt to take their own life.

·      Suicide is the leading cause of death of Australians aged 25-44 and second leading cause of death of those aged 15-24. Australians are more likely to die from suicide than skin cancer.

·         Statistics indicate that over 65,000 Australians each year are known to attempt suicide with the majority of them being women. Men are the most likely to commit suicide, yet the least likely to seek help."

-Black Dog Institute                


The History and Development of the Kiloby Inquiries (KI) can be found at You can hear Scott explain the Kiloby Inquiries at
You can watch me introduce Scott Kiloby and explain the Kiloby Inquiries here:



Feeling Sensations, Including Ones Connected to Sadness, Key to Depression Recovery. Farb, N.A.S., Desormeau, P., Anderson, A.K. and Segal, Z.V. (2022). Static and treatment-responsive brain biomarkers of depression relapse vulnerability following prophylactic psychotherapy: Evidence from a randomized control trial. NeuroImage: Clinical, 34, p.102969. doi:


News, N. (2023). People With Autism Experience Pain at a Higher Intensity. [online] Neuroscience News. Available at:

Bessel A. van der Kolk and Onno van der Hart (1989) explain that a failure to arrange memories linguistically leaves it to be organized on a somatosensory or iconic level: as somatic sensations, behavioral re-enactments, nightmares, or flashbacks. Bessel A. van der Kolk,M.D., & Onno van der Hart, Ph.D., December 1989, ‘Pierre Janet & the Breakdown of Adaptation in Psychological Trauma’, American Journal of Psychiatry, 146 (12), 1530-1540, page 6. For further reading, read Van der Kolk BA, Ducey CR: The psychological processing of traumatic experience: Rorschach patterns in PTSD. J Traumatic Stress 1989; 2:259-274

We behave as if the traumatic experience is still happening: “So we shall view memories as entities that predispose the mind to deal with new situations in old, remembered ways specifically, as entities that reset the states of parts of the nervous system. Then they can cause that nervous system to be predisposed to behave as though it remembers.” Minsky M: K-lines: a theory of memory. Cognitive Science 1980; 4:117-133.



(Traumatic) experiences then may be encoded on a sensori-motor level without proper localization in space and time. They therefore cannot be easily translated into the symbolic language necessary for linguistic retrieval. Pierre Janet &
the Breakdown of Adaptation in Psychological Trauma Bessel A. van der Kolk, M.D., & Onno van der Hart, Ph.D. American Journal of Psychiatry, 146 (12), December 1989, 1530-1540.


Ever since people's responses to overwhelming experiences have been systematically explored, researchers have noted that a trauma is stored in somatic memory and expressed as changes in the biological stress response. Intense emotions at the time of the trauma initiate the long-term conditional responses to reminders of the event, which are associated both with chronic alterations in the physiological stress response and with the amnesias and hypermnesias characteristic of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Continued physiological hyperarousal and altered stress hormone secretion affect the ongoing evaluation of sensory stimuli as well. Although memory is ordinarily an active and constructive process, in PTSD failure of declarative memory may lead to organization of the trauma on a somatosensory level (as visual images or physical sensations) that is relatively impervious to change. The inability of people with PTSD to integrate traumatic experiences and their tendency, instead, to continuously relive the past are mirrored physiologically and hormonally in the misinterpretation of innocuous stimuli as potential threats. Animal research suggests that intense emotional memories are processed outside of the hippo-campally mediated memory system and are difficult to extinguish. Cortical activity can inhibit the expression of these subcortically based emotional memories. The effectiveness of this inhibition depends, in part, on physiological arousal and neurohormonal activity. These formulations have implications for both the psychotherapy and the pharmacotherapy of PTSD.

- Bessel A. van der Kolk (1994) The Body Keeps the Score: Memory and the Evolving Psychobiology of Posttraumatic Stress, Harvard Review of Psychiatry, 1:5, 253-265, DOI: 10.3109/10673229409017088


The body-oriented therapeutic approach Somatic Experiencing® (SE) treats post-traumatic symptoms by changing the interoceptive and proprioceptive sensations associated with the traumatic experience. Filling a gap in the landscape of trauma treatments, SE has attracted growing interest in research and therapeutic practice, recently. The results concerning effectiveness and method-specific key factors of SE are promising; yet, require more support from unbiased RCT-research. Future research should focus on filling this gap.

- Marie Kuhfuß, Tobias Maldei, Andreas Hetmanek & Nicola Baumann (2021) Somatic experiencing – effectiveness and key factors of a body-oriented trauma therapy: a scoping literature review, European Journal of Psychotraumatology, 12:1, DOI: 10.1080/20008198.2021.1929023


We have tended, in the post-Cartesian view of the world, to identify so much with the rational mind that the wider role
of instinctive, bodily responses in orchestrating and propelling behavior and consciousness has been all but
ignored. Where escape is possible, the organism responds with an active pattern of coping. There is the continuous experience of danger, running, and escape. When, in an activated state, escape is successfully completed, anxiety does not occur. Rather a fluid (felt) sense of “biological competency” is experienced. Where defensive behaviors are unsuccessful in actively resolving severe threat, anxiety is generated. It is where active forms of defensive response are aborted and incomplete
that anxiety states ensue. Beneath the Monolithic label of anxiety are ‘camouflaged’ a wealth of incomplete and
identifiable somatic responses, sensations, and bodily feelings.

- Levine, P. A. (2003). Panic, biology and reason: giving the body its due. US Assoc. Body Psychother. J. 2, 5–21.


Van der Kolk, B. A. (1994). The body keeps the score: Memory and the evolving psychobiology of posttraumatic stress. Harvard Review Psychiatry , 1, 253-265.

Van der Kolk, B. A., & Fisler, R. (1995). Dissociation and the fragmentary nature of traumatic memories: Overview and exploratory study. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 8, 505-525.


Interoception in the classroom [Accessed 03 August



YouTube. 2021. When a Client Is Stuck in the Freeze Response with Peter Levine, PhD - YouTube. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 28 July 2021].



PART III – How Trauma Affects Memory and Recall - The Impact of Trauma on Adult Sexual Assault Victims. 2021. PART III – How
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YouTube. 2021. Deb Dana describes the Polyvagal Theory. - YouTube. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 08 September 2021]. 2021. Limbic System Reverse Trauma’s Physiological Imprint. [ONLINE] Available at:’s+Physiological+Imprint+Main+Session.pdf.
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The Weekend University, 2020, Polyvagal Theory and Trauma – Deb Dana, Available at:, Accessed 22/7/21
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Nerd Nite (2017) The Polyvagal Theory: The New Science of Safety and Trauma. 4th November 2017 Available at https://www. 19:06 Accessed: 21 July 2021



Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2021 Deaths by Suicide over Time, Australian Government, viewed 22/7/21, https://www. 2021. No page title. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 28 July 2021].



Pierre Janet & the Breakdown of Adaptation in Psychological Trauma Bessel A. van der Kolk, M.D., & Onno van der Hart, Ph.D.
American Journal of Psychiatry, 146 (12), December 1989, 1530-1540. Corresponding authors: Bessel van der Kolk, Psychiatry Department, Boston University Medical School, and Trauma Center at HRI Hospital, Brookline, Massachusetts, USA. Email: Onno van der Hart, Department of Clinical Psychology, Utrecht University, Heidelberg 1, 3584 CS Utrecht, The
Netherlands. Phone: +31(30)253-1785; fax +31(30)253-4718; Email:



Better Health Channel, 2021, Dissociation and dissociative disorders, Victorian Government, Available at: https://www.betterhealth. (Accessed: 22/7/2021).



YouTube. 2021. TELUS Talks | Your body and mind are connected, with Dr. Gabor Maté - YouTube. [ONLINE] Available at: https:// [Accessed 07 August 2021].



The Weekend University, 2020, Polyvagal Theory and Trauma – Deb Dana, Available at:, Accessed 22/7/21



Health and wellbeing. 2021. What is mindfulness? - Health and wellbeing. [ONLINE] Available at:
mindfulness/what-is-mindfulness. [Accessed 28 July 2021].



YouTube. 2021. Polyvagal Theory and Trauma â Deb Dana - YouTube. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 07 August 2021]., 43:33


Chapter 4 from Porges SW & Dana D (2018). Clinical Applications of the Polyvagal Theory: The Emergence of Polyvagal-Informed Therapies. New York: WW Norton.YouTube. 2021. Polyvagal Theory and Trauma, Deb Dana - YouTube. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 28 July 2021].



NICABM. 2021. Welcome to: Treating Trauma Master Series - NICABM. [ONLINE] Available at:
treating-trauma-master-2/. [Accessed 28 July 2021].



NICABM 2021. Treating Trauma Master Series Module 1 Main Session Neurobiology Trauma. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 07 August 2021]. 2021. No page title. [ONLINE] Available at:
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YouTube. 2021. 5 Types Of Unhealed Trauma - YouTube. [ONLINE] Available at:
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YouTube. 2021. Gabor Mate - Trauma Is Not What Happens to You, It Is What Happens Inside You - YouTube. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 28 July 2021]. 2021. No page title. [ONLINE] Available at:
[Accessed 05 August 2021].



A., B., 2015. The Body Keeps the Score. Penguin Books.



Mate, G. and Mate, D. (2022). The Myth of Normal : Trauma, Illness & Healing in a Toxic Culture. London, Uk: Vermilion.