Trauma and PTSD

At some point in life we may have an experience that falls into the category of being a traumatic event. It is when something out of the ordinary happens, which then affects you in a distressing way. This could be a recent event such as an accident, burglary or a death, or it can be an event from the past such as being abused, bullied, or attacked, a difficult birth or being involved in a conflict. It can be a large scale event involving many people or something more intimate and personal to you. There are a number of ways that we can be affected by trauma such as experiencing flashbacks, being hyper alert or avoiding things, or feeling numb or cut off from others. The physical symptoms associated with trauma can include, sweating and heart palpitations, feeling dizzy or faint, forgetfulness and a sense that you are not in the here and now. It may be hard to sleep or feel relaxed. It can be very difficult to live with these feelings and with the sense that you are still being affected by the event in such a direct way.

Therapy for Trauma
Therapy for trauma helps you to understand why things are affecting you, and helps to make sense of your reaction. It can assist you to develop a more manageable perspective of what has occurred. Working with the therapist you will be supported in addressing the difficulty, and in working through your thoughts and feelings about what has happened. There are a number of strategies that can be effective to aid the process, and EMDR therapy can be particularly helpful. The therapy will support you in strengthening inner resources and develop techniques for relaxation.

Benefits of Therapy for Trauma can include:
  • Relief from acute feelings of distress.
  • A chance to make sense of the associated thoughts and feelings.
  • Greater sense of awareness about how you have been affected.
  • The ability to gain perspective on what has happened.
  • Learning strategies and techniques for coping with the effects.

Possible issues
  • Panic attacks, flashbacks or feeling disconnected from things
  • Inability to put aside what has occurred
  • Repeating negative patterns of behaviour
  • High or low mood swings
  • Anger and upset.
  • Inability to relax, switch off or sleep well