It is impossible to understand how negative events will have an impact on a person over time
Trauma is a very personal injury to the psyche. It cannot be seen, touched or felt, except for by the individual.
In mental health terms, trauma defines the unhealed emotional scars people carry with them. Some may experience a negative event such as a car accident, an attack or even witnessing a natural disaster and have no long-term change to their mental health; others may find events constantly replaying in their mind, causing significant challenges in their behaviour for days, weeks, months and years after.
Often these scars are deeply hidden; the mind has done this to protect the individual, just as a parent moves dangerous things away from a child. However, at some point in time an event occurs in that person's life that triggers those deeply hidden memories. This trigger causes a flood of emotions, which can result in extreme anxiety, panic attacks or a generalized sense of fear, anger or the need to simply get away.
While some trauma can arise from a particular event, trauma can also occur over time in less noticeable ways. A well-recognised example of this is for soldiers returning from war zones, where the daily horror and loss of life they have experienced has become overwhelming. Individuals who face constant bullying or harassment experience a similar type of cumulative aspect of the trauma they experience.
Unfortunately individuals who are experiencing trauma often try to reach out to friends and family only to be told to "get over it" or "it wasn't that bad," which creates even less comfort in talking about and processing the experience.
Are You Experiencing Trauma?
Many people from Chelsea, Mayfair and other parts of London come to The London Practice for help with trauma recovery. They know they are having unusual thoughts and reactions to certain situations, but they do not have a clear understanding of why this is occurring. Some of the common signs of trauma exhibited by people of all ages are:
- Unwelcome and unrelated thoughts, often around a negative event
- Sleep problems, including insomnia
- Flashbacks or visual images of the event
- Problem solving and concentration difficulties
- Avoidance of people, places or activities that are in some way similar or related to the cause of the trauma
- Self-isolation and avoidance of people
- Hyper-alertness, easily startled in public situations and places
- Feeling edgy and on guard all the time
- Inability to relax and unwind, physically or mentally
- Extreme and irrational fears
- Panic attacks
- Obsessive, compulsive or repetitive behaviour patterns
- Easily angered and agitated
Through counselling, psychotherapy or psychoanalysis, individuals experiencing these issues can identify the cause of the trauma and explore it in a safe, professional and confidential setting.
By exploring the past trigger for the trauma, the resulting behaviour can be understood as it is happening now, in the current time period. By having the ability to process trauma and its associated feelings, clients can learn new and more effective strategies to deal with it in a positive and proactive way.
Contact us to find out more about how we might be able to help. Call us on 07809 668193, or use our secure email contact form.