TRAUMA

HOW DO I KNOW IF I HAVE DIFFICULTIES RELATED TO A TRAUMA? 

Traumatic events, which can be a one time occurrence or over an extended period of time, can impact one’s self-concept or the way you adapt to stressors in your life.

Some common symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are: 

  • intrusive memories about the trauma
  • nightmares
  • flashbacks
  • avoiding any triggers that remind you of the trauma
  • negative emotions related to the trauma
  • feeling “not connected” to friends and family members 
  • irritability
  • problems with sleep 
  • feeling hyperaware of one’s surroundings and others 

An individual who has experienced trauma over a extended period of time may also experience additional symptoms such as:

  • persistent sadness or depression
  • explosive anger
  • forgetting parts of the trauma
  • feeling detached from one’s body
  • may feel helpless, shame, guilt
  • feeling overwhelmed when thinking about the trauma
  • using alcohol and/or substances to “numb out” feelings and thoughts about the trauma
  • engaging in self-harm behaviors
  • difficulties with managing relationships

TREATMENT OF TRAUMA 

There are two evidence-based treatments for PTSD, which are Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) and Prolonged Exposure (PE). Both treatments are relatively short-term (12 to 16 sessions) and highly efficacious. As well, both treatments also incorporate skills on addressing interpersonal/relationship difficulties that are related to a trauma response.

Trauma Treatment for Journalists

I am also developing a sub-specialty in working with journalists who are exposed to occupational chronic stress and trauma. I have a strong appreciation for the role of journalism in society, and consider it a privilege to work with news professionals. I have received training from the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma on the professional culture and occupational challenges of journalists. In addition to using HIPAA-compliant telehealth software, I have also received training from the Freedom of the Press Foundation on best practices for digital security when using telehealth technology.