Trauma is characterized as a frightening, dangerous, or violent event that overwhelms the bod’s natural coping abilities. Exposure to death, injury, abuse, or sexual violence/assault often causes trauma/PTSD. Other more common life events like job stress, divorce or accidents can cause a trauma/PTSD response as well. Put simply Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is the bodies response to an overwhelming traumatic event or in some cases very disturbing experiences. PTSD can be a debilitating condition that is unlikely to resolve on its own. People respond to trauma in many different ways.
Signs of Trauma
- Depression, sadness, or social isolation
- Feeling the need to be hyper-aware or alert in case of danger
- An exaggerated startle response, on edge
- Increased irritability, sudden anger attacks
- Feelings of shame, guilt, or intense worry
- A sense of numbness in life
- Nightmares of flashbacks that relive the terrible event
- Avoiding situations which may be reminders of the event
- Difficulty functioning in daily life
- Substance abuse and dependence
It is estimated that 70% of adults living in the United States have experienced a traumatic event. Childhood trauma increases lifelong health risks and emotional instability. Our brains have a natural way to recover from traumatic memories and events but very often this natural recovery process becomes overwhelmed or blocked. EMDR therapy is designed to activate the blocked communication so the natural healing process can resume. Often, signs of trauma/PTSD like those listed above will diminish or disappear once EMDR therapy is complete.