Traumatic events and experiences — such as assault, abuse, combat, bullying and family dysfunction — affect people of all ages and backgrounds. Whether the trauma is a one-time occurrence or an ongoing situation, it can result in severe psychological scars that can affect you for many years. Overcoming trauma requires professional, personalized treatment.
Traumatic incidents can overwhelm your ability to cope with everyday situations and significantly disrupt your daily life. Though some of the symptoms of trauma manifest in different ways, common side effects of traumatic experiences include:
Mary helped me with a great deal of trauma that I wasn’t even aware was affecting my daily life. I don’t know where I would be without her.
Seeking counseling to help you move past your trauma can be a beneficial first step in regaining your mental health and quality of life and overcoming the symptoms. After undergoing therapy, you will feel empowered to take control over your negative thoughts and feelings, reduce your anxiety and improve your day-to-day living situation.
There is not one specific type of trauma therapy. Instead, licensed therapists use a variety of approaches, either alone or in combination, to help you work through the trauma and move on with your life.
Integrated trauma treatments include talk therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy. An approach called eye movement desensitization reprocessing (EMDR) has also proven successful in helping people with post-traumatic stress disorder. EMDR therapy differs from other trauma-focused treatments in that it does not include extended exposure to the distressing memory, detailed descriptions of the trauma or challenging of dysfunctional beliefs. Instead, the goal of EMDR is to retrain the brain to store traumatic memories differently, therefore reducing or even eliminating the disruptive symptoms that result from trauma.
Though you may enter treatment with your own unique goals, depending on what you hope to achieve, common objectives of trauma therapy include: