Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and trauma can result in a wide range of difficulties.  Whilst many of the reactions listed below are a normal response to trauma, and resolve with time, in some cases problems arise when people develop Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  There are a number of factors which can contribute to a more complicated reaction to trauma, such as other situations in a person’s life at the time of the event, and earlier traumas.  On occasions, PTSD symptoms do not appear for a long time after a traumatic event (months or years).  A diagnosis of PTSD is made where a number of symptoms persist for a long time (one month or more), the level of distress is severe, and ability to function is greatly impaired.

Indicators of Post-Traumatic Stress (PTSD) and Trauma

If you were to answer yes to the following question, then the subsequent information may be useful to assess how the traumatic event has impacted on you.  This could help you to determine whether seeing a PTSD psychologist for psychological treatment for trauma would be beneficial.

  • Have you experienced or witnessed a traumatic event which involved a threat to life or safety, such as:  a natural disaster, war, an assault, a serious accident, abuse, a home invasion, or receiving tragic news (amongst others)?

As a consequence of such a traumatic event:

  • Have you experienced significant distress, and intense feelings of helplessness and fear?
  • Do you continue to feel terror long after the event has occurred?
  • Have you felt shocked, sad, hopeless, irritable, angry, or guilty?
  • Have you felt overwhelmed by the experience of the trauma and the intensity of your emotions?
  • Have you found yourself easily startled or constantly on the look out for any signs of potential danger?
  • Have you felt emotionally numb and disconnected from people?
  • Have you felt disconnected from yourself, as though you are in a fog and observing things from outside yourself?  
  • Do you experience recurrent nightmares, memories, or flashbacks of the trauma, which are intense and distressing?
  • Do you go to great lengths to avoid anything related to the traumatic event (including thinking about it, talking about it, associating with other people who also experienced the trauma, or not going to the place where the traumatic event took place), or keeping yourself excessively busy?  
  • Have you lost your sense of safety and security?
  • Do you try to ‘escape’ the memory of the traumatic event and ‘self-medicate’?

Psychological Treatment

Talking to a PTSD psychologist can help in overcoming the adverse effects of traumatic events and the symptoms of post-traumatic stress.  PTSD and trauma treatment is provided in a safe and supportive way, utilising a range of  therapeutic interventions.  An approach is used drawing on therapy modes such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), trauma therapy, and interpersonal therapy (amongst others).

Benefits of Psychological Treatment

We can help you to:

  • understand your reactions to the trauma and provide you with support and understanding
  • learn how to regulate your strong emotions
  • restore your sense of safety and control
  • reduce your level of avoidance and reconnect with people
  • process the trauma-related feelings and memories, at a pace with which you are comfortable, and in a safe way
  • reduce or eliminate the distressing symptoms you have been experiencing so that the memories are no longer as traumatic
  • rebuild your ability to trust people and feel secure
  • restore hope and strengthen your sense of self.

How we can help

Psychological Treatment

  • re-establish your sense of  security and safety following a traumatic event or after experiencing post-traumatic stress
  • process trauma related feelings and memories, at your own pace in a supportive way
  • learn to regulate intense and overwhelming emotions
  • reduce the intensity of distressing symptoms of trauma and PTSD such as flashbacks, intrusive thoughts and memories, fear, and hyper-vigilance (being on the alert for danger)
  • reduce your level of avoidance, and reconnect with people
  • restore your sense of control and trust
  • no longer be constrained by the distressing effects of the trauma or the symptoms of post-traumatic stress (PTSD)

Call 0409 415 323

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)  and Trauma – Psychologist Adelaide

Contact us to see a psychologist providing treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), so you can overcome the impact of the trauma, and restore your sense of safety and security.