Counseling for Trauma
“The creative adult is the child that has survived” – Ursula K. Le Guin
Most people will experience trauma in their lifetime whether it’s a car accident, abuse or neglect, the sudden death of a loved one, a violent criminal act, exposure to the violence of war, or a natural disaster
While many people can recover from trauma over time with the love and support of family and friends and bounce back with resiliency, others may discover effects of lasting trauma, which can cause a person to live with deep emotional pain, fear, confusion, or posttraumatic stress far after the event has passed.
In these circumstances, the support, guidance, and assistance of a therapist is fundamental to healing from trauma.
“The emotions are sometimes so strong that I work without knowing it. The strokes come like speech.” – Vincent Van Gogh
Trauma can manifest powerfully, in a variety of ways most of which we aren’t even aware of. Trauma symptoms can contribute to unhealthy thought and behavior patterns, challenge our relationships, make it hard to regulate our emotions and just make us feel like we are losing our grip.
Many people have experienced trauma as children. As a result of the experiences children may develop coping mechanisms that helped them survive adversity, but that no longer serve them as they age. People who have experienced a significant number of ACEs or Adverse Childhood Experiences. s are at higher risk to experience a emotional and physical health consequences including trauma symptoms. (read more about ACES by following the link)
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual Version 5 ( DSM-5) identifies the 4 characteristic symptoms of trauma as:
1. Avoidance Symptoms
- Avoiding specific locations, sights, situations, and sounds that serve as reminders of the event
- Anxiety, depression, numbness, or guilt
2. Re-experiencing Symptoms
- Intrusive thoughts, nightmares or flashbacks
3. Hyperarousal Symptoms
- Anger, irritability, and hypervigilance
- Aggressive, reckless behavior, including self-harm
- Sleep disturbances
4. Negative Mood and Cognition Symptoms
- Loss of interest in activities that were once considered enjoyable
- Difficulty remembering details of the distressing event
- Change in habits or behavior since the trauma
Research has proven psychotherapy to be the most effective form of treatment for trauma.
The most commonly used therapeutic modalities in the treatment of trauma include:
- Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT),
- Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and
- Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR).
If you or someone you know experiences the symptoms of trauma, I am confident that I can help and invite you to contact me today for a free consultation.