Dealing with lingering issues following a terrifying incident can be a challenge for anyone who has been subjected to trauma. PTSD cases arise from a variety of circumstances, including childhood abuse, loss of loved one, violent incidents, natural disasters, and being diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. There are forms of PTSD treatment available, and here's what you should know about them.
The recurring part of PTSD is one of the key features that distinguishes it from other trauma-related emotional disorders. People with PTSD frequently have nightmares, express high amounts of anger during stressful situations, experience flashback, or actively go through the events in their minds. Their reactions may include emotional outbursts, withdrawal, and feeling of guilt or shame.
Symptoms generally appear within one to 6 months of an incident. An individual with PTSD may have headaches, trouble concentrating, and nausea. Sweats and sleeplessness are frequently noted, too.
Is it PTSD?
One major concern that has to be addressed before starting PTSD treatment therapy is making sure there isn't a physical problem. Due to the fact that many PTSD incidents are physically jarring, it's important to rule out the possibility a patient has suffered brain damage. It will also be necessary to address the question of whether PTSD might be co-morbid with brain trauma. Once this concern has been addressed with medical scans and tests, therapy can move forward.
Kinds of Therapies
Everyone responds differently to various types of therapies. That's a good thing because it means no one is doomed just because a specific PTSD therapy didn't work for them. Dialing in what approach works well for you is a critical part of the process.
Many forms of PTSD treatment therapy are different from traditional sit-down talk therapy. For example, exposure therapy and eye-movement desensitization both work on directly confronting the sources of depression, anxiety, and fear that accompany a relived event. Cognitive behavioral therapy takes a similar tack, focusing on developing an understanding that specific stimuli aren't as threatening as the patient believes.
Experiential therapies are also popular options for coping with PTSD. For example, animal therapy can focus a patient on caring for a living thing and connecting with it rather than aiming squarely at particular experiences. A similar approach is used in art and play therapies where a patient can focus on an activity.
There are plenty of options available. When you talk with a therapist, be prepared to look at several options.