5 Reasons To See a Therapist When Dealing With Trauma

  in  General Health
Just because your life hasn't ground to a stand-still due to trauma or PSTD (post-traumatic stress disorder) does not mean that you shouldn't see a therapist; rather, seeing a therapist to deal with the grief and emotional pain associated with trauma should be a necessary action that you take. Defined as an event in which you perceive a threat to your bodily integrity, sanity or life, traumatic events can profoundly effect an individual and the way they live day-to-day.

1. It's hard to deal with trauma on your own

Sometimes you just need to put feelings into words. In fact, a 2007 study by the University of California found that by verbalizing our feelings to ourselves or another individual, it can make negative emotions such as sadness, anger and pain less intense. Many therapists can give you tools to help live "in the moment". This is based not only on old Buddhist teachings, but solid neural evidence that the ability to live in the present moment - and not the past - seems to produce a startling amount of positive feedback in traumatized individuals. The study found that by attaching negative words to events or images, patients saw a decreased response in the amygdala. As a result, an individual may experience a decrease in the intensity of negative emotions.

2. PTSD is a serious condition

PTSD can run your life if left unchecked. It doesn't matter if it was severe acute trauma or trauma that happened over a long-term period of time. If an individual does not seek proper treatment (which can include therapy and other measures such as medication) for trauma, it has been shown that many patients can fall into dangerous behaviors such as substance abuse, self-harm attempts or poor relationship decisions.

3. It disrupts your self-image

After dealing with a serious traumatic event, an individual can feel pervasive and upsetting emotions for a long period of time. This can lead to changes in how someone perceives themselves due to persistent and unshakeable feelings of shame, helplessness, guilt, remorse and/or depersonalization. Often times a person may blame themselves for the traumatic event, which is just another action that deprecates their own self-worth. Talking to a therapist can help a traumatized person through to the other side of their pain.

4.Trauma can exacerbate existing mental health conditions

Not only can a traumatic event increase the severity of certain pre-existing mood disorders - like anxiety and depression - it can trigger brand new anxiety-related mental illnesses in a traumatized person. In many cases, the real extent of the damage can go unnoticed for years before you do some serious digging. Many people choose to shy away from the trauma of an event and leave certain emotional stones unturned for decades. If you suspect that you have generalized depression or an anxiety-related illness and can trace it back to a certain event, talking with a therapist should be your first line of action. Acute stress disorder and PTSD should not be taken lightly.

5. Therapy Works

Therapy has been proven (scientifically) to improve the lives of people that are affected by trauma. Many treatments and therapies for PTSD and other trauma-related incidents involve a category of therapy called CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy). Many treatments focus on why a patient is blaming him/herself for the event and what can be done to relieve symptoms of anxiety and depression in a traumatized individual. Exposure therapy can gradually help a person face their fears when dealing with memories associated with a traumatic event. Many people have to un-learn self-defeating and incorrect thoughts, as these thoughts can send a person through emotional turmoil on a daily basis.


See a Therapist to Overcome Trauma

Even though the natural inclination is to hide when you are struck with trauma, facing your demons head-on is the only real way to learn to deal with past traumatic events and the mood disorders that may have been caused by said events. We highly recommend seeing a trained professional to help individuals that are dealing with trauma.


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