Trauma Therapy

Trauma is a psychological response to a highly stressful event. For example, being physically present in a war zone, car accident, violent incident or a natural disaster. Trauma also affects those who witness certain stressful events such as a fatal car accident or a shooting.

Trauma causes various emotional and physical symptoms that may manifest differently depending on the person. Not everyone who witnesses or experiences a highly stressful event will develop psychological trauma. Some people have symptoms of short-term trauma that resolve relatively quickly. Others develop trauma that leads to ongoing and long-term effects.

Types of Trauma

Trauma usually develops as a result of a terrible event as mentioned above. However, a person can still develop trauma resulting from any event that they personally find harmful or threatening. A person experiencing trauma may feel a dizzying array of emotions right after the event and for some time after. They may feel shocked, helpless, dazed and overwhelmed. These emotional reactions may also manifest as physical symptoms. Trauma can cause long-term effects and even develop into a mental health issue known as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The Following Are Four Common Types of Trauma:

1. Acute trauma
Often caused by a single dangerous event.
2. Chronic trauma
Caused by repeated and long-term exposure to stressful situations such as a war zone, domestic violence or child abuse.
3. Complex trauma
Caused by exposure to several traumatic situations.
4. Secondary trauma

Caused by close contact with someone who has experienced chronic or acute trauma.

Symptoms of Trauma

Various factors influence how a stressful or traumatic event will affect someone. These factors include the following:

The person may develop several of the following emotional and psychological responses due to the traumatic event:

These symptoms may manifest in the form of emotional outbursts, withdrawal from others and flashbacks.

Physical Responses To Traumatic Events

Experiencing a traumatic event doesn’t only result in emotional symptoms. Many people also have physical symptoms like the following:

Another common symptom is hyperarousal. This makes you feel like you’re in a constant state of fight or flight. The most common result of this is an inability to fall asleep or stay asleep. Without trauma therapy and other types of treatment, people who experience these symptoms may go on to develop other problems such as substance abuse and severe depression.

Examples of Traumatic Events

Research shows that up to 75% of people living in North America will experience or have experienced a traumatic event. The following are considered potentially traumatic events:

These events may be isolated or ongoing. A person can also develop trauma upon witnessing a traumatic event happen to someone else. As previously mentioned, not everyone develops a trauma response to these types of events.

What Is PTSD?

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) develops when physical and mental symptoms of trauma get worse as weeks and months pass after the traumatic event. PTSD causes significant distress and often interferes with a person’s daily life and obligations. Some PTSD symptoms include flashbacks, ongoing memories from the event and severe anxiety. Another common symptom is avoidance behaviors. The person will avoid visiting the place where the event happened as well as avoiding any triggers related to it. Risk factors for PTSD include the following:

Trauma Therapy and Treatment

Various types of treatment like cognitive behavioral therapy, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing and counseling can help resolve the symptoms of trauma and PTSD.

Menachem Psychotherapy Group provides trauma therapy in Los Angeles and offers group, couple and individual trauma therapy covering the following topics:

If you have developed emotional or physical symptoms as a result of experiencing a traumatic event, then trauma therapy can help. Get in touch with them today for a free phone consultation to find out about your treatment options.