Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Description

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) can be the result of experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event, and the effects can have a profound impact on one’s life. If you’re suffering from PTSD, you may struggle with the ability to cope with daily life in multiple ways. Often, those who suffer from PTSD are haunted by the trauma, and have a hard time managing their emotions, troubled relationships, difficulty sleeping, and intense feelings of anxiety, anger, and fear. The good news is that PTSD is treatable, and you can learn concrete adaptive ways to respond to the trauma and live a richer life with less distress.

Symptoms

Going through a traumatic event like an accident, sexual assault, military combat, or some type of disaster can be extremely overwhelming, and the impact can seep into many areas of your life. Signs that you are suffering from PTSD can include:

  • Avoiding people, places, or situations that remind you of the trauma
  • Repeated flashbacks of the memory of what happened to you
  • Recurrent nightmares or upsetting dreams
  • Feeling like you’re always “on edge”, or are easily startled and jumpy
  • Abuse of substances like drugs or alcohol to help you deal with your emotions
  • Irritability and angry outbursts
  • Intrusive thoughts that remind you of the trauma
  • Feeling detached or estranged from friends and family
  • Persistent or recurrent experiences of unreality of surroundings – the world around you may seem unreal, dreamlike, distant, or distorted.
  • Intense psychological and/or physical distress when remembering or being exposed to reminders of the trauma(s)
  • Difficulty experiencing positive emotions such as happiness, joy, satisfaction or love.
  • Hypervigilance – increased alertness to danger and threat
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Insomnia

Treatment

Therapists at the Anxiety and Depression Center are experts in the treatment of PTSD. We can help you to develop valuable coping mechanisms to improve your quality of life. You can heal from trauma, and we use evidence-based treatments that are highly effective in helping people to minimize the intensity of PTSD symptoms and process unresolved trauma in a healthy way.

Our staff is highly trained and experienced in using Cognitive Behavior Therapy, prolonged exposure, cognitive processing therapy and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), gold standard treatments for addressing PTSD. We develop a customized treatment plan based on your situation.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy that has consistently been found to be the most effective treatment of PTSD both in the short term and the long term. CBT for PTSD involves a gradual and graduated desensitization to the traumatic memories and to the people, places or things that remind you of the trauma. Additionally, CBT for PTSD addresses any ongoing sense of guilt, danger, mistrust, lack of safety or other problems that may have an ongoing and negative impact on your life.

Prolonged exposure teaches you to gradually approach your trauma-related memories, feelings and situations. This type of therapy can help you to become less reactive to trauma-related memories and cues, so you understand that they are not dangerous and do not need to be avoided.

Cognitive Processing therapy is a specific type of CBT that helps you learn how to modify and challenge unhelpful beliefs related to the trauma.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapy involves processing upsetting trauma-related memories, thoughts and feelings. EMDR asks you to pay attention to either a sound or a back-and-forth movement while thinking about the traumatic memory.  EMDR therapy helps patients to reprocess and reduce high intensity emotions that often result from trauma.  To learn more about EMDR click Here.

Obtaining effective treatment for PTSD can be critical to your ability to heal and live your best life. We can help. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.