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Join Lisa as she Keynotes 2-days at the 2024 Louisiana Play Therapy Association Conference. On day 1, the topic will be Healing Medical Trauma in Play Therapy.


Medical trauma is a prevalent experience for many children who have undergone medical procedures or experienced chronic and acute conditions yet is often not included in trauma discussions. Learn how to use play to help children integrate their medical experiences.

According to the National Child Trauma Stress Network, up to 80% of children who undergo medical procedures experience some form of traumatic stress and 20-30% of parents and 15% of children experience chronic stress from medical procedures.  Without knowing what medical trauma is and how the symptoms manifest, play therapists can inadvertently miss signs that the child has experienced a medical trauma or jump to conclusions regarding the child’s behaviors and play.  In this 6-hour workshop, play therapists will explore medical trauma from the perspective of neuroscience and interpersonal neurobiology while drawing from Gestalt, Synergetic and Nature Based Play principles and theories.  Using creative play-based ways to support children and their family’s healing process, participants will learn how to create emotional and relational safety for trauma integration.  They will learn what it means to become a child’s external regulator to help integrate the activation in a child’s nervous system while safely allowing the child to access the stored trauma in their body from the trauma.  Participants will also explore the symptoms often associated with medical trauma as the symptoms can often be confused with sexual or sensory trauma.  Whether the child has experienced a single incident trauma or is struggling with a chronic illness, participants will learn what it really takes to integrate their experiences.  As children are not the only ones affected by medical trauma, care for their caregivers will also be addressed, as well as an exploration of creative play-based ways to help the entire family system heal.

As this is a special populations workshop, it is important that participants already have a solid foundation in play therapy skills and experience.   This workshop is thus geared towards an intermediate level.

This workshop helps participants gain a deeper understanding of the diverse impacts of childhood trauma, specifically medical trauma and its impact on the play therapy process.  As participants learn about medical trauma, they will also be better able to create treatment goals, understand possible interventions and design a treatment process that is more congruent for the child and their family.

This is event is open to the public, please visit the organizations website for additional information. If you would like your organization to receive training in Synergetic Play Therapy, please contact the Institute at info@synergeticplaytherapy.com.