Trauma is a deeply emotional response to a profoundly distressing event such as a natural disaster, an accident, death, physical or sexual assault, abuse, or any situation that evokes intense fear and horror. Sometimes the traumatic incident may involve emotional or verbal abuse which can feel very confusing and as if it "doesn't count." Even hearing about or witnessing terrifying events secondhand can cause a traumatic response; especially when these experiences happen over and over again.
Responses to traumatic events can vary. It is normal to feel strong emotions after experiencing a traumatic event such as shock and denial. For some people, the traumatic response can last months or years after the traumatic event itself. The wounds from the traumatic experience can bleed into the present and interfere with normal life. When this happens, it may be time to seek help to work through past trauma or traumas.
What Are The Symptoms Of PTSD?
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) often emerges as a consequence of enduring trauma. Those who develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) face additional challenges, contending with distressing and disabling symptoms such as nightmares, flashbacks, trying to avoid reminders of the trauma, worrying about the traumatic event happening again, being hyperaware of their surroundings, feeling jumpy or on edge, irritability, anger, or emotional detachment.
Individuals with PTSD often feel as if the traumatic event continues to haunt them, even though it occurred in the past. They want to free themselves from the overwhelming memories of their trauma and regain control of their lives.
How Can Treatment Help?
In the journey to overcome PTSD, two treatments have consistently stood out as highly effective, earning their place as the "gold standard" interventions for this condition.
- Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) – Trauma survivors often internalize negative beliefs about themselves, others, and the world as a result of their experiences. These limiting beliefs, known as "stuck points," hinder progress after trauma. In CPT, therapists work collaboratively with clients to identify and reframe these beliefs into more constructive thoughts. Clients who undergo CPT often rediscover an optimistic perspective on their life and future, breaking free from the shackles of trauma and negative thoughts.
- Prolonged Exposure (PE) – PE is a specialized therapy designed explicitly for PTSD treatment. The primary objective of this therapy is to reduce distress and anxiety related to traumatic memories. This is achieved by revisiting and recounting the traumatic event and gradually confronting situations that trigger trauma-related reminders. The pace of treatment is guided by the client's level of comfort and under the supportive care of their therapist. Prolonged Exposure is a transformative treatment that empowers clients to reclaim their lives by letting go of the traumatic memories that have held them captive.
If you or a loved one is grappling with PTSD and seeking a path to recovery, we encourage you to reach out to us. We've witnessed remarkable transformations through these therapies and are committed to providing the support and guidance needed to rediscover the joy of life. Your healing journey begins with a simple step — contact us today to embark on the path to recovery and restoration.