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  • Recognizing Trauma Responses

    You may be somewhat familiar with the term Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can occur after a person has experienced a life-threatening event such as an assault, car accident, natural disaster etc. Common symptoms of PTSD include nightmares, flashbacks, avoiding reminders of the trauma, intense stress, tension, and anxiety.

    Another Type of Trauma, Complex Trauma

    In addition to the symptoms described above, trauma responses can present in more subtle ways. Often these symptoms arise when an individual is struggling with Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (CPTSD). Complex Trauma occurs when an individual has been exposed to multiple or ongoing traumas, stressors, or disturbing experiences. Because these symptoms are more subtle, they often go unnoticed or are misunderstood by the person experiencing them. 

    Some examples of Trauma symptoms and Trauma responses include:

    -Feeling detached from oneself or others
    -Feeling confused, questioning reality
    -Experiencing memory loss or gaps in memory
    -Feeling intense shame and guilt
    -Struggling with self-identity
    -Experiencing challenges in relationships
    -Struggling to regulate emotions, often reactive to stressors
    -Experiencing confusing or distorted perceptions of the abuser
    -Becoming easily overwhelmed

    How can Trauma Informed Therapy Help

    I offer online therapy in Brentwood and Nashville, Tennessee and Augusta, Georgia, for individuals who have experienced psychological, physical, or emotional trauma. If you are struggling with any of the above listed symptoms, therapy can help you:

    -Understand your emotions and feel less reactive

    -Feel less overwhelmed

    -Experience healthier relationships

    -Feel less anxious and depressed

    -Heal from past trauma or upsetting experiences

    Tips for managing trauma responses or anxiety

    • Ground yourself to the present moment. List five things you can see, feel, and hear, in your surroundings. This will emphasize that you are in the present, not the past.
    • Practice self-compassion and self-care. Identify what you need in the moment to feel safe and relaxed. Perhaps it’s taking a walk, talking to a friend, hugging a pet, or journaling.
    • Take deep breaths. Inhale for a count of 5, hold the breath for a count of 5, and then exhale for a count of 5. Repeat.
    • Ask for help! Most importantly remember you don’t have to struggle alone. Reach out to a trusted family member or friend for emotional support. Seek therapy for help in better understanding and treating symptoms.

    Contact me to learn more about how online therapy can help you understand and heal from Complex Trauma.

    Offered in: Brentwood, TN. – Nashville, TN. – Augusta, GA.