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Getting Help: What You Should Know About the Effects of Trauma

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

 


Around 60% of men and 50% of women experience trauma at least once in their lifetime.

Going through a traumatic event is bad enough in itself, but the long-term effects of trauma can have a serious impact on your life.

Understanding some of the effects of trauma on the brain and body could be the first step in getting better.

Read on as we look at what you should know about the lasting effects of trauma and how you can get help.

Mental Health Effects

Trauma can have both mental and physical effects. There are multiple mental health symptoms that you may experience.

Panic Attacks

Panic attacks are a sudden feeling of intense anxiety. They may be accompanied by physical symptoms such as sweating palms, shaking, or breathlessness.

Panic attacks are an exaggerated form of your body's response to danger.

Hypervigilance

Hypervigilance is remaining in a high state of alert, constantly on the lookout for danger or threats. This is a form of hyperarousal that specifically relates to the expectation of further danger.

Depression and Social Isolation

People who have suffered trauma will often display symptoms of depression and low-self esteem. This can sometimes include social isolation; keeping yourself apart from other people.

This can have negative consequences as you are avoiding those people who may most be able to help you.

Risk-Taking Behavior

Another quite common effect of trauma is exhibiting risk-taking tendencies. This involves seeking out activities that could potentially put you in harm's way such as substance abuse, risky sexual behavior, eating disorders, and more.

Physical Health Effects

Studies have shown that trauma may also increase your risk of developing physical health conditions, including long-term or chronic illnesses.

If you're experiencing poor physical health, it's vital that you speak to a medical professional.

Getting Help

If you are suffering from the effects of trauma, there are things that can help.

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) is a therapy that involves training yourself to think in a different way. It teaches you techniques to avoid falling into negative thinking and helps you to gain control of your thoughts and responses.

EMDR Therapy is a therapy used in the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It involves recalling the traumatic event whilst making specific eye movements. This is supposed to help your brain process the trauma and has been shown to be effective for many people.

Counseling involves talking through your experiences to try to come to terms with them. Group therapy, with people who have had similar experiences, can also help.

You could also be prescribed medication to help moderate some of your symptoms. This includes products such as anti-depressants.

Are You Suffering From the Effects of Trauma?

If you recognize any of the effects of trauma in yourself or a loved one, then the good news is that there are steps you can take to help.

Speak to a professional who may be able to recommend treatment that can improve your symptoms, such as EMDR or counseling. Trauma can have a serious impact on your life, so don't suffer in silence. Reach out for help and it could make all the difference.

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