Trauma therapy is a therapeutic approach that focuses on treating the psychological impact of traumatic events on individuals. Trauma therapy helps people process and heal from their trauma by guiding them through their trauma in a compassionate and supportive way, allowing clients to feel the full scope of what happened to them and eventually move on from the event(s). This process helps people who have experienced trauma find ways to feel safe in their life.
Trauma therapy will often require individuals to walk through their experiences in a controlled and compassionate setting (unless the client has a dissociative disorder) so that they can fully process the event, an activity that will allow them to move on from what happened and feel safe again. Thriveworks Charlottesville therapists will also help clients learn healthy coping mechanisms to deal with their symptoms outside of therapy.
If an individual is working through a single event that occurred during adulthood, they may only need a few months of treatment. However, in instances of childhood trauma or repeated traumatic events, therapy may continue over the course of years. Trauma therapy usually ends when the client believes they have met their therapeutic goals, however long that takes to occur. Thriveworks therapists in Charlottesville, VA will continue to provide care for as long as necessary to help clients meet their therapeutic needs.
Some people find it difficult or impossible to relax, often saying it even hurts to do so. These symptoms often lead to sleep difficulties including inability to fall or stay asleep, kicking, night sweats, nightmares, frequent waking often as though being startled awake.
Similarly, psychological symptoms may involve mood swings, memory problems, emotional pain, substance abuse or addiction (self-medicating), a noticeable change in personal hygiene or housekeeping behavior, taking exceptional risks, isolating, wondering “what’s the point”, flashbacks, aggression, self-mutilation or suicidal thoughts.
The most important thing is to identify these symptoms as they arise – don’t feel guilt or shame about them. If you or someone you know is experiencing the effects of trauma, be proactive! Some of these ideas can help:
- Get moving! Remember, trauma freezes us in a state of arousal and fear, so exercises like walking, running, swimming or even dancing work well to stave off that fear. If 30 minutes at a time isn’t possible, try three 10 minute sessions daily and really get in touch with your body.
- Connect with others. Isolation, while tempting, is not helpful to recovery. Get out and connect with people through social events, volunteering or even joining a support group. Connecting doesn’t mean you have to discuss your trauma – in fact, sometime stalking about the trauma can make things worse, much like peeling a scab off an injury prevents healing.
- Practice mindfulness and relaxation techniques. Many people have found yoga, guided imagery, progressive muscle relaxation and deep breathing exercises to be very helpful.
- Take care of yourself. Eat healthy, rest, and avoid using alcohol or other substances as these may make things worse.
Know When to Seek Help
While everyone heals at their own rate, not everyone can heal on their own. If your symptoms interfere with your normal daily functions, or if your relationships are being negatively impacted, it’s time to reach out to a professional, and we at Thriveworks Charlottesville are here to provide you the professional help you need, right away. We operate with a “no waiting list” policy. Call us today and see a counselor within 24 hours, and sometime seven the same day! We’re excited to help you on your road to recovery!
Call today at 434-812-4009! We’re ready to start when you are—and you’re welcome to book online to get started, too.