This Conversation How You Think Trauma? is a blog that focuses on helping people understand and process trauma. The blog features articles and resources that can help people work through their trauma and begin to heal.
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What is trauma?
Trauma is an emotional response to a deeply distressing or disturbing event. It can be caused by physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, as well as by accident or natural disaster. People who have experienced trauma often feel isolated, confused, and unable to cope.
At its simplest, trauma is an emotional response to a deeply unpleasant or distressing event.
We all experience things like this from time to time, and most of us will recover relatively quickly. However, some people find it much harder to cope and may feel overwhelmed or unable to process what has happened.
This can lead to them feeling stuck in a cycle of painful memories and strong negative emotions. In severe cases, it can even cause long-term mental health problems.
Types of trauma
Trauma is a difficult experience that can have lasting effects. There are different types of trauma, and not all traumas result in long-term problems. However, some traumas can lead to lasting psychological damage.
There are two main types of trauma:
-Acute trauma: This is a single, shocking event that causes intense fear or terror. Examples of acute trauma include car accidents, natural disasters, and witnessing violence. Acute trauma often leads to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
-Chronic trauma: This refers to exposure to multiple traumatic events over time. Examples of chronic trauma include living in a war zone, growing up in an abusive home, or being the victim of human trafficking. Chronic trauma can lead to complex PTSD.
How does trauma impact thinking?
Trauma can have a profound impact on the way we think. It can lead to changes in our thinking patterns and the way we process information. This can be a result of the physical changes that occur in the brain after a traumatic event. Trauma can also lead to mental health problems, such as anxiety and depression.
The connection between trauma and thinking
It’s well known that trauma can have a profound and lasting impact on a person’s mental health. But what is often less spoken about is the impact that trauma can have on a person’s ability to think clearly and rationally.
Research has shown that trauma can lead to changes in the way the brain functions, particularly in the areas responsible for memory, decision-making, and self-regulation. This can make it difficult for people who have experienced trauma to make sense of what has happened to them, and to make decisions about what to do next.
There is also evidence to suggest that trauma can lead to ‘cognitive distortions’, which are ways of thinking that are skewed or inaccurate. For example, someone who has experienced trauma may see themselves as ‘bad’ or ‘worthless’, even if this is not true. Or they may believe that the world is a completely dangerous place, even if this is not the case.
Cognitive distortions like these can make it very hard for someone to recover from trauma, as they may be constantly reliving their experiences in their mind, or living in fear of things that are not actually threatening.
If you have experienced trauma, it is important to seek professional help so that you can start to understand your experiences and learn ways to cope with them. With the right support, it is possible to recovery from the impact of trauma and live a full and happy life.
The impact of trauma on thinking
Trauma can have a significant impact on a person’s ability to think clearly, make decisions, and concentrate. It can also lead to problems with memory and cause people to feel confused or disoriented.
The effects of trauma on thinking can be short-term or long-term. In the short-term, a person may have difficulty concentrating or making decisions. They may also have trouble rememberIng what happened during the traumatic event. In the long-term, a person may experience more chronic problems, such as PTSD, that can interfere with their daily life.
How can thinking about trauma be helpful?
Trauma can often feel like a taboo topic, one that we avoid thinking about or discussing because it can be so painful. However, recent research has shown that thinking about and processing trauma can actually be helpful in healing and moving on from the event. Let’s explore how thinking about trauma can be helpful.
The benefits of thinking about trauma
Some people might think that it is best to avoid thinking about trauma altogether. However, there are actually some benefits to thinking about trauma in a constructive way.
For one thing, it can help you to understand what happened and why it affected you the way it did. This can give you a sense of control and empowerment that can be helpful in coping with the aftermath of trauma.
In addition, thinking about trauma can also help you to develop a more nuanced and realistic understanding of yourself. It can help you to see yourself as someone who has been through something tough but who is still capable of healing and moving on.
Of course, it is important to remember that not everyone will find thinking about their trauma to be helpful. If you find that thinking about your trauma is causing you more distress than relief, then it might be best to avoid dwell on it or to seek professional help.
The process of thinking about trauma
Many people find it helpful to talk about their experiences with someone who will understand and not judge them. It can be particularly helpful to talk to someone who has had a similar experience.
Talking about trauma can help people make sense of what happened and process their emotions. It can help them understand that they are not alone and that other people have been through something similar.
Thinking about trauma can also help people develop a more positive outlook and taste for life, as well as a sense of strength and empowerment. It can help them see that they have survived something difficult and come out the other side stronger.
How can I get started thinking about trauma?
If you are seeking information on how to think about trauma, you are not alone. Many people want to learn more about trauma and its effects but are unsure of where to start. Here are a few resources to help you get started on your journey of understanding trauma.
The first step in thinking about trauma
The first step in thinking about trauma is understanding what it is. Trauma is a deeply distressing or disturbing experience. It can be physical, emotional, psychological, or spiritual. It can also be caused by an event or series of events that leaves you feeling overwhelmed and unable to cope.
Trauma can cause a range of reactions, including:
-Shock, denial, or numbing
-Anger, irritability, and aggression
-Anxiety and fear
-Guilt and shame
-Depression and hopelessness
-Withdrawal from friends and activities
-Reckless or self-destructive behavior
-Difficulty trusting people
-Flashbacks and intrusive memories
-Nightmares and sleep problems
If you are struggling after experiencing trauma, it is important to seek professional help. A therapist can help you process your experience and develop healthy coping skills.
Resources for thinking about trauma
There are many ways to start thinking about trauma. Here are some helpful resources:
-The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma by Bessel van der Kolk
-Trauma and Recovery by Judith Herman
-Complex PTSD: From Surviving to Thriving by Pete Walker
-What is Complex Trauma? – National Child Traumatic Stress Network
-How Social Workers Can Help Survivors of Human Trafficking – National Association of Social Workers
-Complex Trauma Resources – National Child Traumatic Stress Network