What is PTSD and how do I know if I have it?

Has trauma become your new normal?

In my experience many people become accustomed to their trauma quite quickly after an event and PTSD becomes a new normal, a daily companion.  This is a survival tactic and your brain has your best interest at heart, honest.

When we hear of PTSD we immediately think of the obvious such as war veterans, car crash, domestic abuse but there are no rules.  You could be the victim, a witness to an incident or even hearing someone else talk about their traumatic experience.  Secondary trauma is a real thing, the partners of those in professions may innocently share their work experience leaving their more vulnerable, empathetic partner with traumatic thoughts.

The first thing to be aware of is that PTSD is not a weakness but instead your brain doing its job and keeping you safe.  No matter the incident, how tragic or dark it was, you survived and your brain is holding that information as an emergency response just incase you need it again.

So how do you know if what you have is PTSD or a bad experience and subsequently a bad memory?

This is not a diagnosis just a guide!
Take a few deep breaths and reflect on the following questions
If you answer ‘sometimes’ or ‘often’ to the majority then you may have PTSD and it is recommended that you seek professional help.

Involuntary thoughts, I thought about it when I didn’t mean to

I tried to remove it from my memory

I had difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep because pictures or thoughts about it came to mind

I had dreams about it

Pictures kept popping into my mind

I am aware that I still have a lot of feelings about it and I have not dealt with them

Reminders trigger feelings about it

I avoid reminders

 

Quite often along with the memory you will notice the following physical responses

Heart racing

Shortness of breath

Irrational thoughts

Nausea, sweating

Stomach clenching

Exhausted

Insomnia

Most people manage their mental health, including trauma, by keeping themselves busy, not allowing themselves time to stop and think.  Being super busy is a coping mechanism and in the short term can be quite effective.

Recently many of us have been forced to stop and look our thoughts directly in the eye and question are we really okay or just getting by? 

Hopefully this article will help you identify, whether it be yourself or someone close to you.

Most importantly be assured that this is not just addressing the problem but offering a solution.

“When the student is ready the teacher will appear”

So what next?

Now of course I am going to recommend the Rewind Technique, but why?

The Rewind Technique does not erase the memory but instead puts it away in a filing cabinet for safe keeping.  Allowing you to control the thought rather than it control you.

To protect both my client and myself from secondary trauma the incident is not discussed in detail, this is no doubt too raw and painful and quite frankly serves little purpose.

Emotions such as anger and guilt can be managed separately this is purely a process of separating the memory from the emotion.  The brain just gets it and does what it needs to do, naturally.

Thankfully I have had the opportunity to help people with the Rewind Technique using Zoom and FaceTime and thrilled to report that the results were as successful as if we were in the same room.

No one should live with PTSD, there are solutions, it is not long term talking therapy and the results can be seen in 1-3 sessions.

If this sounds appealing to you then

I’m only a message away!

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