The Four Signs of Trauma – Trauma Counselling in Newcastle
A traumatic event can have serious psychological and physical impact on the individual, leading to them responding to the trauma in many different ways.
Some can experience difficulties controlling their thoughts and emotions, while others can also get into destructive patterns of behaviour or habits. When the response is severe, it might be diagnosed as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Dr Stuart Sadler (Chartered Clinical Psychologist) at the team at Newcastle Psychologist & Counselling suggests four signs of trauma (though there can be others) to look out for which suggest a person may have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event.
1. Sudden Anxiety or Panic in Certain Situations
Sufferers of trauma may experience intermittent feelings of anxiety or panic, especially in situations that can be similar to the traumatic event. This can be sudden thoughts that something bad (though the person might not know what) is about to happen, or that a similar traumatic event is going to happen.
2. Trauma Related Sleep Difficulties
Sufferers of trauma may experience a myriad of sleep disorders, the most common being insomnia and/or nightmares. As a result of persistent feelings of anxiety and panic, the person may not be able to relax enough to have good quality sleep. Even if they do fall asleep, nightmares of the event might cause them to wake up in a panic. Nightmares can therefore be a sign that the trauma has not been processed properly.
3. Intrusive Thoughts and Memories
Sufferers of trauma may experience recurrent images and thoughts associated with the traumatic event. Such intrusive memories can be triggered by seeing something similar, conversations with others, smells, sounds and even being present in a similar environment. Trauma counselling can help the person overcome these difficulties by working through the experience.
4. Avoidance and Social Avoidance
As a result of anxiety (as well as the poor sleep and intrusive memories that might come with trauma), a trauma sufferer may choose to avoid activities, including social activities, to prevent thoughts or feelings associated with the traumatic event.
Avoidance often makes the problem worse however as it perpetuates the negative cycle associated with trauma, social isolation, anxiety and depression. As such, it is important to stay active and engage with life as much as possible.
Working with one of the Trauma Counsellors or Psychologists at Newcastle Psychologist & Counselling can help you overcome avoidance in a graded way so as to reduce isolation and improve day to day activity.
Getting Help with Trauma
It is important to recognise that trauma can have a big impact on a person – not just affect the individual but for their family and friends as well. Often people have different responses to trauma, and it might be others that notice the signs above.
Seeing a Specialist Trauma Counsellor, Psychologist or Therapist at Newcastle Psychologist & Counselling for trauma counselling in Newcastle can help you overcome the symptoms of trauma and help process the traumatic event(s).
If you think you may have been affected by trauma or are suffering from PTSD, send us a message using the box below and book an appointment with one of our Specialist Trauma Counsellors or Trauma Focused Psychologists today.
Dr Stuart Sadler
Lead Clinical Psychologist