Experiencing trauma can change your life forever, affecting the way you think and impacting your physical well-being and health.
A traumatic event or experience can happen to anyone, at any stage of their lives, and depending on its severity can cause a multitude of negative reactions – from mild anxiety and stress to PTSD and physical symptoms. These symptoms may start just a few minutes after the trauma, and can either disappear quickly (within a few hours or days) or be long lasting, requiring professional help over a period of months or years. Reactions to differing trauma can be subjective, and what can affect one person’s mental and physical health badly may be forgotten quickly by another.
Luckily there are many effective ways to treat the negative symptoms of trauma, with sufferers being given ways to cope such as spending time with family and friends, avoiding alcohol and drugs, regular exercise, sleeping and healthy eating habits. Seeking professional help once the signs and symptoms of trauma are recognised can be an important step in the healing process.
Signs and symptoms
- Avoiding talking about the event or experience, or situations related to the event
- Anger, depression and sadness
- Feeling ‘highly strung’
- Experiencing flashbacks of the event or experience
- Avoiding social occasions or hobbies and activities that were once enjoyed
- Issues with sleeping
- A lack of appetite or nausea
- Loss of sex drive
- Muscle tiredness or weakness, aches and pains
- Feelings of guilt, especially if others were badly injured or had died as a result of the event or experience
It is believed that long term symptoms of trauma such as stress and anxiety can lead to serious health issues such as high blood pressure and heart disease.