Reg’s research is in the area of clinical psychology, specifically acute stress disorder (ASD) and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), serious anxiety disorders that can develop after traumatic experiences. One project that is underway is testing an early intervention that is delivered in the first month after trauma. It is hoped that if individuals access early treatment, long-term chronic problems such as PTSD can be prevented.
Reg also investigates cognitive processes that underlie the development and maintenance of intrusive memories. Intrusive memories are a hallmark feature of posttraumatic stress. Not only are they distressing to sufferers, but they are thought to be responsible, in part, for setting up a vicious cycle of behaviours in sufferers that can lead to these memories persisting. By arriving at a better understanding of the key processes involved, it is hoped that this will result in improved therapeutic strategies for assisting sufferers with these memories.