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Shattered Mirror

Understanding Trauma/PTSD

Trauma is a profound and complex human experience that affects countless individuals around the world. In the following, we will explore the intricate nature of trauma, its causes, manifestations, and the path to recovery. Understanding trauma is the first step toward healing and resilience.

Defining Trauma

Trauma is a deeply distressing or disturbing event or series of events that can have a lasting impact on an individual's mental, emotional, and physical well-being. It often overwhelms a person's ability to cope and leaves an enduring mark.

Trauma can result from various sources, including:

  • Physical Trauma: Such as accidents, injuries, or medical procedures.

  • Emotional Trauma: Such as the loss of a loved one, divorce, or betrayal.

  • Psychological Trauma: Like exposure to violence, abuse, or witnessing a traumatic event.

  • Natural or Human-Made Disasters: Such as earthquakes, hurricanes, or acts of violence.

What is PTSD?

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that can develop after exposure to a traumatic event. While some symptoms of trauma are common in the immediate aftermath of an event, PTSD is diagnosed when symptoms persist for longer than one month and significantly disrupt daily life.

Symptoms of PTSD

In addition to the general symptoms of trauma, individuals with PTSD may experience:

  • Nightmares: Vivid and disturbing dreams about the traumatic event.

  • Emotional detachment: Difficulty feeling happy, connected to others, or interested in activities they once enjoyed.

  • Irritability and anger outbursts: Difficulty controlling anger and emotions.

  • Trouble concentrating: Difficulty focusing on tasks or remembering things.

  • Self-destructive behaviors: Substance abuse, self-harm, or risky behavior.

Treatment Options

Effective treatment for PTSD often involves a combination of therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes:


  • Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT): Helps individuals identify and change negative thought patterns and behaviors.

  • Exposure Therapy: Helps individuals safely face and manage their fears.



  • Antidepressants can help reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety.

  • Anti-anxiety medications can alleviate severe anxiety symptoms.

  • Prazosin may be prescribed to reduce or stop nightmares.


Lifestyle Changes:

  • Regular physical activity and a healthy diet can improve overall well-being.

  • Mindfulness practices and relaxation techniques can reduce stress.

  • Building a strong support network with friends and family can provide emotional support.

Taking the First Step

If you recognize these signs of trauma/PTSD symptoms in yourself, seeking professional help is crucial.


At Night Owl Psychotherapy, I offer a safe and supportive environment to help you manage your trauma/PTSD and regain control of your life with evening and late-night appointments to fit your schedule.


Contact Night Owl Psychotherapy today for a consultation. Don't let trauma/PTSD hold you back any longer.

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