In the aftermath of a traumatic experience, it is common for many people to develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). PTSD is most commonly associated with abuse survivors or veterans returning from war. However, anyone can experience trauma symptoms. Trauma is an emotional response to an extremely stressful situation.
It can be debilitating and affect life in profound ways. It doesn't matter if the traumatic event happened one month or 20 years prior. Trauma symptoms can manifest themselves slowly over time or all at once. They sometimes don't even start showing themselves until long after the event happens.
Someone experiencing PTSD may feel like they can't reach out to others for fear they won't be understood. Also, trauma survivors may feel as if there is no hope that these symptoms will go away and may never heal. If you are a trauma survivor, don't believe these lies. You CAN heal, and you can lessen the symptoms that affect you.
Fortunately, there are a variety of therapy approaches that can help trauma survivors. Let's go over some of the most popular therapy types for trauma.
PTSD Treatment Options
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to treating any mental health concern, even PTSD. Thankfully, there are a lot of options for treatment.
1. Talk Therapy
Talk therapy, or traditional therapy, can be a great starting point to begin talking about your trauma. Especially if you aren't used to opening up about what you went through. Or if you have never gone to a therapy session before. It can be a good place to begin before you move on to more advanced methods of treating PTSD. Plus, with talk therapy, your focus doesn't always have to be on your symptoms and what you went through.
With traditional therapy, it is completely up to you about what you want to discuss. The therapist you choose to work with will let you take the floor and will never push you to explain further if it isn't something you are comfortable with.
You know you went through something traumatizing and want to find a way forward. Sometimes, you may not want to focus on the past so much. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) could be a great option for you. CBT is used to help see the connection between problems, thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. While focusing on the past can be useful, it's not the only way to heal. This can help reframe your mindset around what happened and what you think about it. Consequently, that can help transform your feelings which often influence the behaviors and symptoms you are experiencing.
Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is perhaps one of the most successful ways to treat PTSD. Eye movement, or bilateral stimulation, has been scientifically proven to help the traumatic memory process and eventually desensitize it so it can no longer affect you as deeply. In EMDR, a therapist will ask you to recall the specific memory triggering your symptoms. As you remember, they will use specific and guided eye movements. It is an eight-step process that often produces promising results.
How To Know What Treatment Method Is Right For You
Similar to anything else, treating PTSD is a process. While you can heal, it won't be a one-and-done situation. Finding what works best for you will take time and might be a trial-and-error process.
As a trained and licensed therapist familiar with all of these approaches and more, I can help you determine the best course of action for you through PTSD or Trauma Therapy. I invite you to connect with me for a consultation.