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When we witness or experience something traumatic like acts of violence or natural disasters we are often affected both mentally and emotionally. Each person will react differently to any given traumatic event and the emotional response we experience is a very normal part of the healing process, and of being human.



What you might experience:


  • Numbness; inability to experience feelings, feelings of disconnectedness

  • Changing emotions, such as shock, denial, guilty, self-blame

  • Extreme sadness, crying

  • Mood changes; irritability, anxiousness, nervousness, pessimism or indifference

  • Inability to concentrate

  • Recurring memories or bad dreams about the event

  • Social withdrawal, isolation, strained personal relationships

  • Physical symptoms, such as unexplained aches and pains, nausea, fatigue, loss of energy

  • Changes in eating habits, or sleeping patterns

  • Increased consumption of alcohol



All of these things are a normal part of grieving and recovering from any kind of trauma; they are symptoms of situational and reactive depression. If these things persist, begin to affect daily life and escalate in nature, then, they become symptoms of a more serious episode of depression, which presents itself as a heightened reaction to an abnormal situation.



Causes of emotional or physical trauma:


  • Single event: an accident, injury, natural disaster, violent attack

  • On-going events: living in a dangerous place, battling a life-threatening illness

  • Commonly overlooked causes: surgery, the death of someone close, breakup of a significant relationship, a humiliating or deeply disappointing experience

An event will most likely lead to emotional or psychological trauma if:


  • It happened unexpectedly, therefore you were unprepared for it

  • You felt powerless to prevent it

  • It happened repeatedly

  • Someone was intentionally cruel

  • It happened in childhood

  • You’re already under heavy stress or have recently suffered a series of losses

  • You’ve been traumatised before



© VM

Sometimes trauma and PTSD can be alleviated with counselling alone. Oftentimes though other interventions such as medical hypnotherapy or indeed some Alternative Therapies are needed. At Life After Traumatic Events we have a wide range of therapeutic interventions on offer to help you.


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