Trauma & Ptsd


" Trauma is a fact of life. It does not, however, have to be a life sentence" - Peter A. Levine

Trauma has recently been included in the same space as other mental health disorders and is finally being given the attention it needs. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, more than 8 million Americans from the age of 18 and up have been diagnosed with PTSD. Traumatic events, and the PTSD that is linked with them, can have a huge impact on a person’s mental health, so it is important that they are dealt with correctly and as soon as possible.

All About Trauma & PTSD

The first step in working through trauma or post-traumatic stress disorder is to understand that while the effect of the traumatic event is a factor, it’s the ability to bounce back afterwards that determines how difficult it will be to work through and regain mental equilibrium.

What is Trauma?

Trauma is the emotional response that you have from events that are physically or emotionally threatening and can affect you immediately after the event or years later. Trauma can make you feel helpless, anxious, shocked, overwhelmed, and can make it feel impossible to process your experience.

Types of trauma include:

  1. Acute trauma can develop after one traumatic experience, which is any situation where you feel unsafe and severely stressed.
  2. Chronic trauma can develop after extended periods of repeated trauma. While the individual events may not be enough to cause acute trauma, the repetitive nature of the events has a build-up effect.
  3. Complex trauma can develop following exposure to several different types or sources of trauma. Similar to chronic trauma, complex trauma is formed by a build-up effect of various traumatic situations.
  4. Secondary/vicarious trauma is a less common type of trauma that causes a person to experience trauma symptoms after close contact to someone who has been traumatized. Family members, close friends, mental health professionals, and doctors are among those at high risk of experiencing secondary trauma.

Understanding A Person’s Response To a Traumatic Event

 

If left untreated, trauma can have severe long-term effects on your mental and physical wellbeing. Symptoms that persist indicate the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Symptoms Of Trauma

 

Trauma symptoms range anywhere from mild to severe, and each person will respond to traumatic events in their own way. There are multiple factors which contribute to the severity of their symptoms, which include:

  • Their character and personality
  • The presence/absence of other mental health conditions
  • Exposure to previous traumatic events
  • The type of traumatic event
  • The characteristics of traumatic event
  • Their approach to handling emotions
  • The support systems they have in place

Emotional symptoms of trauma can be any combination of the following:

  • Fear
  • Shame and guilt
  • Denial
  • Anger
  • Sadness or depression
  • Hopelessness and numbness
  • Confusion
  • Anxiety

Someone processing trauma often experiences unpredictable emotional outbursts, has difficulty coping with what they’re feeling, and withdraws from those around them. Flashbacks and nightmares about the event are common.

Physical symptoms of trauma can include:

  • Fatigue
  • Racing heart
  • Sweating
  • Feeling nervous and jumpy
  • Digestive issues
  • Headaches

What is PTSD?

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a sometimes-debilitating mental health condition that can occur in anyone who experiences a traumatic event. Most people who go through trauma recover from the events, but those suffering from PTSD become stuck in severe depression and anxiety for long periods of time.

Symptoms Of PTSD

 
  • Nightmares, flashbacks and other intrusive memories of the traumatic event.
  • Persistent emotional numbness.
  • Avoidance of reminders of the trauma including people, activities and places.
  • Difficulty concentrating and sleeping, feeling easily angered, irritated and jumpy.
ptsd & trauma therapy

Getting Help: Therapy For Trauma & PTSD

As with any mental health issue, it is important to get help after experiencing trauma or while suffering from PTSD. During therapy you will be work with your therapist to develop new skills, set goals and dismantle unhelpful beliefs regarding the trauma. Different techniques will be used to create new thought patterns and physiological responses. The debilitating effects of trauma and PTSD are treatable, and help is a phone call away. Contact Psychotherapist, Priya D’Singh, at 954-806-5569 and take the first step towards recovery.

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P.S. LOVE YOURSELF PROGRAM

This is a customizable 12-week program created to help you learn how to cope with painful emotions and manage them on your own. Life can have many tragic, depressing or painful transitions. If you will allow me to, I can show you how to love yourself first and heal. Each session is 50 minutes.

P.S. LOVE YOURSELF INTENSIVE PROGRAM

This 24-week program is designed to help survivors of simple and complex trauma heal. In this program, I will teach you about trauma and how it affects your brain. You will have the opportunity to develop healthy coping skills that may aide in managing triggers, flashback, panic attacks, anxiety and depression. We will work together to create a mindfulness practice that works for you. In addition, I will help you learn how to set and maintain healthy boundaries. This program is intended to guide you through the journey of self-love and to help you heal from those “invisible” wounds. Each session is 50 minutes.

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