Men, women, and children of all ages and backgrounds can struggle following one or more traumatic life events. People respond to unexpected or prolonged trauma in different ways. While some are able to overcome the trauma, others relive the same memories over the course of weeks, months, or even years. This can take a severe toll and result in deep pain and discouragement.
If left untreated, the symptoms may develop into Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD can occur as a result of unexpected and extreme stress incidents, such as natural disasters, being the victim of a violent crime, or the sudden death of a loved one. Chronic stress over a long period of time, such as physical or sexual abuse, military combat or dysfunctional relationships from childhood can also be traumatizing enough to result in PTSD. The good news is that there are multiple ways to address the negative effects of trauma and go on to live a fulfilling and abundant life.
Our counselors are trained in helping individuals develop skills for coping with a trauma. We understand that dealing with the past is scary and the cycle of avoidance keeps you from talking to others about your experiences. But talking about your struggles with therapists trained in trauma recovery will help you overcome the avoidance and move toward a more rewarding life.
The most important part of therapy is working with a professional you trust in an environment that feels safe. We want to prevent you from feeling re-traumatized, so our counselors never force you to go further than you can handle.
There are several approaches to the treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and each may be helpful at different stages of the treatment process.
Here are some of the approaches we take to treat PTSD
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) helps to change negative thoughts associated with the trauma and find more positive and less distressing perspectives of what happened.
Exposure Therapy helps to cope with guilt, shame, and fear related to traumatic memories by talking about certain events with your therapist again and again. While it may be difficult at first, you will eventually experience less intense trauma symptoms.
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) uses eye movements, hand taps, and sounds to help you reprocess painful memories so that the negative trauma symptoms no longer occur when the memories come to mind.
Certain medications can help with the traumatic symptoms and our psychologists can make appropriate referrals to psychiatrists and other MDs as needed.
Relaxation and mindfulness training
Relaxation and mindfulness training helps to deal with negative emotions and live in the present
Family therapy helps your loved one to understand why you are under so much stress and deal with how the PTSD has affected them.