The Safe & Sound Protocol (SSP) is an amazing therapeutic tool with 20 years of clinical research demonstrating effectiveness in helping children and adults with a history of trauma, or with developmental delays. It was designed by Dr Stephen Porges PhD, and is helping children and adults around the globe to regulate their nervous system through a five day listening intervention.
Specially filtered music, designed to train the ear muscles to better perceive human voice, is played through headphones – ideally for one hour over five consecutive days, though this can be tailored to the patient’s needs and tolerance. This re-training of the ear muscles is then reinforced with lots of loving interaction during the weeks and months that follow the SSP intervention. The new-found ability of the ears to perceive the soothing frequencies in the human voice allows the patient to feel calmer and more engaged in social interactions. It allows children and adults to be more readily calmed by others, prevents anxiety and meltdowns from social stimulation, and reduces hypersensitivity to sounds – a common feature of autism and PTSD in particular.
Research demonstrates significant improvement in the following areas, after the SSP:
- Hearing sensitivity
- Spontaneous speech
- Listening and following instructions
- Behavioural organisation
- Emotional control
- Regulation of heart rate by the vagus nerve
- Spontaneous social behaviours such as sharing and showing affection
Clinical experience also demonstrates improvement in learning, responses to other therapies, sleep patterns and in digestive disorders, as well as in anxiety and response to emotional stressors. Pain sensitivity can also be reduced.
All of these effects are possible because of the way that the SSP teaches the nervous system to remain in a calm state. The nervous system is responsible for gastrointestinal functions, pain perception, emotional regulation, behaviour, mood, sleep and, well – pretty much everything! A calm nervous system supports healthy growth and development.
The SSP system is currently available for hire Australia-wide for either a 7 or 10 day period (longer by application.)
If you are interested in hiring the SSP please click here to complete the pre-assessment questionnaire. Once we receive your intake form, you will be contacted to book a short appointment to assess your suitability for the SSP and to discuss how to implement it. (Note that existing nutrition patients can simply discuss during a regular appointment if desired.)
All SSP hire fees include email support while you are hiring the machine, and for a reasonable time period afterwards.
Costs (GST included where applicable):
- Intake interview: $50 (If not conducted during a regular nutrition consultation)
- 7 day hire: $280
- 10 day hire: $390
- Refundable deposit: $200
Delivery fees an additional cost for those who are unable to collect from clinic.
For more information on the research and impacts of the SSP, please investigate the research links below:
- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4117928/ (In this article, the SSP is referred to as the Listening Project Protocol – its original name.)
The SSP is based on the polyvagal theory by Dr Stephen Porges, which has a large volume of research backing.
This video gives a simple explanation of polyvagal theory and how the safe and sound protocol works. It’s worth a watch for anyone who is wondering if the SSP may help them or a loved one: