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Dr Kerry Young

Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Woodfield Trauma Service, CNWL NHS Foundation Trust


Oxford Rose Clinic, John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford

Imagery re-scripting in PTSD

On Demand CBT workshop


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Kerry also delivered

"Working with troublesome mental images across disorders

On Demand CBT workshop £80.00

Information about both workshops is available below - just scroll down.  

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Kerry Young, Transforming images: Welcome
Dr Kerry Young - Imagery in PTSD workshop

re-scripting in PTSD

Delivered 9th June 2022

Available 'on demand' - £80.00


Imagery rescripting (ImRs) is a technique aimed at reducing unwanted intrusions through modifying the meaning and emotions attached to a distressing memory. The process involves asking the individual to vividly imagine the start of the traumatic memory and then incorporate a new, rewritten, safer ending with the aid of the therapist.

ImRs has been shown to be effective in reducing PTSD symptoms from both adult and childhood traumatic events (e.g. De Haanet al., 2020; Alliger-Horn et al., 2015; Arntz et al., 2007; Ehlers et al., 2003; Grunert et al., 2007; Hackman, 2011; Smucker et al., 1995). ImRs is also associated with a reduction in intrusive experiences (i.e. images, nightmares, flashbacks, voices, thoughts) within a number of other conditions, such as social phobia, snake phobia, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, body dysmorphic disorder, eating disorders and personality disorders (for literature review and meta-analysis, see Arntz, 2012; Morina et al., 2017). As such, ImRs techniques are a useful addition to trauma-focused therapies, as well as to other cognitive behavioural interventions.

The Workshop will aim to:

Explain the scientific background to ImRs

Illustrate the basic method of ImRs for adult and childhood traumatic events

Discuss when and how to use it within other trauma-focused therapies

Show what the technique looks like in clinical practice

The workshop will be as practical as possible, with lots of demonstrations and detailed guidance and scripts on how to undertake the techniques.


Arntz, A. (2012). Imagery Rescripting as a therapeutic technique: Review of clinical trials, basic studies and research agenda. Journal of Experimental Psychopathology, 3(2), 189-208

De Haan, K. L. B., Lee, C. W., Fassbinder, E., Van Es, S. M., Menninga, S., Meewisse, M. L., ... & Arntz, A. (2020). Imagery rescripting and eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing as treatment for adults with post-traumatic stress disorder from childhood trauma: randomised clinical trial. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 217(5), 609-615.

Kerry Young, Transforming images: Text

Dr Kerry Young

On Demand workshop

Working with troublesome mental images across disorders


Distressing, imagery-based intrusive memories are the hallmark of PTSD. However, they can occur in schizophrenia, depression, OCD, Bipolar Disorder, SAD, eating disorders, personality disorders and beyond. Intrusive mental images of the future can also occur, such as 'flashforwards‘ to suicidal acts or manic pursuits in bipolar disorder.

Mental imagery has extremely interesting properties – it recruits similar brain areas to actual perception, enhances memory and learning and, compared to verbal processing, it has a more powerful impact on emotion. Learning how to ‘harness’ the power of mental imagery to help alleviate distress is an important tool for any CBT practitioner.

This workshop will discuss the science and practice of using imagery-based CBT techniques.

The Workshop will aim to:

 - Explain and demystify mental imagery

 - Present what is mental imagery from clinical and theoretical perspectives

Illustrate how to assess and ‘micro-formulate’ troublesome mental imagery across psychological disorders

 - Introduce and practise a range of techniques for working clinically with mental images across disorders

 - Use examples of how to apply these techniques in treating PTSD and bipolar disorder predominantly, but other conditions will also be discussed.

The workshop will be as practical as possible, with lots of demonstrations and detailed guidance and scripts on how to undertake each technique. I hope that at the end of the day, participants will feel more confident about where to begin when working with troublesome mental imagery. I really enjoy the work that I do in this area and hope to spread some of that enthusiasm and knowledge to others.

Key references

Holmes, E. A., & Mathews, A. (2010). Mental imagery in emotion and emotional disorders. Clinical Psychology Review, 30(3), 349-362.

Holmes, E., Hales, S., Young, K. & Di Simplicio (2019) Imagery Based Therapy for Bipolar Disorder and Mood Instability. Guilford Press

Pearson, J., Naselaris, T., Holmes, E. A., & Kosslyn, S. M. (2015). Mental imagery: functional mechanisms and clinical applications. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 19(10), 590-602

Hales, S., Blackwell, S., Di Simplicio, M., Young, K., & Holmes, E.A. (2015). Imagery based cognitive assessment. In D.A. Clark and G. Brown (Eds.), Assessment in Cognitive Therapy. New Brunswick: Guilford Publications

Kerry Young, Transforming images: Welcome
Imagery based cognitive therapy cover

About Dr Kerry Young

Kerry Young is a Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Clinical Lead of the Woodfield Trauma Service in London, UK, a leading centre for the treatment of asylum seekers and refugees suffering from PTSD. She also works at the Oxford Rose Clinic, a service for the medical and psychological treatment of women who have experienced Female Genital Mutilation. She has advised national bodies in the UK on how to train clinicians to work with refugees, PTSD and Complex PTSD. Kerry is an expert in mental imagery techniques and on their life-changing benefits for clients. She trains nationally and internationally on using imagery techniques within CBT, as well as on how to treat PTSD and Complex PTSD.

Kerry Young, Transforming images: About

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