Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Unfortunately life can throw us into terrifying, traumatic situations. We do our best in the moment to get ourselves through and it’s natural that we feel affected by what we went through for some time after it happened. It’s normal to experience feelings of the trauma happening all over again, to have nightmares about it or to have memories about it come into our mind in a way that we have no control over. Over time, as we start to process what happened, these experiences start to subside, however if we are still experiencing any of these “re-experiencing” symptoms one month after the traumatic event, it’s possible we could be experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Alongside the distress of re-experiencing, we may find ourselves avoiding anything that reminds us of our traumatic experience or avoiding talking about it, we may feel on “high-alert” or easily startled. We may notice that we are irritable or angry or have lost interest in life. We may experience physical anxiety symptoms like dizziness or a pounding heart, or we can feel numb or at a loss. We may start drinking more alcohol or using other substances to escape distressing emotions.
Trauma-focused CBT and EMDR can help us to process what happened so that we don’t feel like we are experiencing it again. It can help us to overcome avoidance of things related to the traumatic experience and start to live our life more fully again. It can help us work with feelings of guilt or shame that may be related to what happened. Yoga therapy can help more directly with a body that feels trapped in trauma which can help with a mind that feels trapped in trauma. It can help us ground ourselves when we are re-experiencing aspects of the trauma and downgrade the general physical and emotional stress so that we are more able to tolerate distress and we can once again start to feel a sense of ourselves and develop resilience in our body and mind. If you need help managing post-traumatic stress related difficulties get in touch and let’s talk about how therapy can help you.
You can read more about PTSD here.