Healing Trauma and PTSD

What Is Trauma?

Following a deeply disturbing or threatening event, or trauma, you may feel distressed and overwhelmed. Traumatic events include actual or threatened death, serious injury to oneself or another person, or a threat to the personal beliefs of oneself or others.

Perhaps you think post-trauma disorders are limited to injured armed service members or victims of horrific violence.  This is not true. Many challenging events and happenings in our life — especially in early life — can have a profound effect on our health today.  For example:

  • Personal history of physical, sexual or verbal abuse
  • Physical and emotional neglect
  • A family history of alcoholism, domestic violence, and mental illness
  • The disappearance of a parent through abandonment, jail, death, divorce. 
  • Anxiety or fear of danger to self or loved ones, being alone, being in other frightening situations, having a similar event happen again.
  • Avoidance of situations or thoughts that remind you of the traumatic event.
  • Sleep problems, including getting to sleep, waking in the middle of the night, dreams or nightmares about the traumatic event.
  • Guilt and self-doubt for not having acted in some other way during the trauma, or for being better off than others, or feeling responsible for another person’s death or injury.

Of course, not all trauma is in our past.  It is often a central factor in ongoing illness.  The illness itself often creates feelings of powerlessness in the face of danger. This is the essence of trauma: feeling unsafe, trapped and unable to overcome or escape the threat.

Many, maybe most of us experiencing chronic health problems, have a history of trauma. There is an emerging science (or more properly a coming together of different scientific threads) that establish these things:

  • Trauma in our past has a powerful physiological effect on our bodies today, reflecting in a variety of forms of unwellness;
  • Most people who are in ill health can be helped by directing healing efforts toward correcting those physiological ill effects with changes in diet and supplements;
  • Yet most people will not experience lasting relief until the old trauma is resolved;
  • Conventional insight therapy is not particularly useful at dislodging these old wounds.

How Does Trauma Lead To PTSD?

Alternatively, they may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which is a long-lasting anxiety response following a traumatic or catastrophic event.

PTSD usually develops within six months of the traumatic event. About half of all adults report experiencing a PTSD candidate event sometime in their lives, but only 10% will develop PTSD as a result, with 3.7% of the population being diagnosed with PTSD in a given year.

PTSD usually develops within 3-6 months of the traumatic event  and involves the following:

  • Re-experiencing the traumatic event in two ways: Images or flashbacks of the traumatic event (reliving the event)
  • Nightmares about the trauma and disturbed sleep
  • Avoiding things, thoughts and feelings that remind you of the traumatic event
  • Difficulty remembering important aspects of the trauma
  • Withdrawal from your friends and family
  • No interest in normal activities
  • Symptoms of increased arousal and anxiety
  • Intense arousal and anxiety when faced with reminders of trauma
  • Having depressed or irritable mood (and getting angry easily)
  • Difficulty concentrating on and remembering other things
  • Having depressed or irritable mood (and getting angry easily)

Having PTSD can be very difficult and can affect relationships, work, and physical health. This is why trauma healing is needed to help you live a positive and fulfilling life.

Learn How Somatic Experiencing Can Heal Your Trauma And PTSD

Somatic Experiencing® is a holistic trauma healing technique that has been developed over the last 20 years to help dislodge these old wounds. It is based on the Holistic Trauma Healingunderstanding that the part of our brain called the amygdala holds the reins to our autonomic nervous system and evolved long enough before our more modern brain (the neo-cortex) that it speaks a different language. Holding the reins to our autonomic nervous system means that it controls our heart rate, our digestive system, and our fight-or-flight response, and it often holds wellness hostage to fears that lurk below the surface, residual to early frights or injuries.

Somatic training helps the body learn to feel safe and release old fears. It helps us to learn the language of the amygdala. Symptoms of ill health are often the body trying to get our attention and can take on new meanings as we learn to hear what the amygdala is trying to tell us.

Somatic Experiencing is gentle and quickly effective for many people. The fundamental values of SE stray from traditional models that pathologize the body and its adaptations to overwhelm. It also celebrates the body’s inherent nature to heal and can assist you gently towards your goal of emotional and physical stability. 

We know of no other medical clinic that brings together all of the components necessary for the healing of illness related to trauma. Please fill out our New Patient Inquiry form today to schedule a free call to discuss how we might work together to heal what’s really causing your illness.