Understanding Post Traumatic Stress

§ October 14th, 2015 § Filed under Counselling Services § No Comments

There may be times in a person’s life when they will feel severe trauma. This may be as a result of having been in accident, having suffered molestation or abandon and even a death of a loved one. For most people, they will be able to overcome the effects of trauma with time. This is most likely to happen if they receive support from their friends and family.

Unfortunately, there are those who are so deeply affected by the trauma such that it may become a problem they may have to deal with for most of their life. For such people, the emotional damage is so deep that it will not go away overnight. The most effective treatment is for the person suffering to go for trauma counselling.

Post Traumatic Stress (PTSD)

PTSD occurs as a result of a person reacting to a stressful situation that results in a lot of anxiety, horrible flashbacks, depression and even suicidal tendencies. Those who suffer from this may continue to suffer long after any physical danger has been removed. It is very common among soldiers who have been at war. While men are more likely to experience PTSD, women are more likely to develop the disorder.

Diagnosis and symptoms

For a person to be diagnosed with PTSD, they must have been in a physically life threatening situation or they must have heard stories of how someone they loved faced such a situation. To be considered to have this disorder, a person must have displayed the following symptoms for at least a month.

These include avoidance symptoms such as a person doing their best to avoid certain locations. They must have also been having recurrence symptoms like nightmares and flashbacks. Other symptoms include anger and aggressions and a loss of interest in activities that they used to enjoy as well as refusal or difficulty in remember certain painful events.


The most effective treatment is psychotherapy. Through counseling and therapy, a person suffering from PTSD can be made to understand what is really happening so they can understand why their body is reacting in this way. The therapist will work with the patient to come up with ways in which they can cope with the sudden flashes as well as anger. The aim is to help them stay safe and protect themselves. For most cases, therapy should be enough. However, there are more severe cases where the prescription of antidepressants can be justified.

It is important to note that not every case of trauma will result in a person developing PTSD. Some people have learnt to come up with strategies to cope with the symptoms. Some people have even gone on to develop posttraumatic growth. This is growth that results in a person becoming stronger in their personality and in character after going through a trauma.

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