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Over the past several years, there have been numerous traumatic events all across the country. From incidents of mass violence to devastating natural disasters to a global pandemic, millions of Americans have experienced or witnessed a disastrous or life-threatening event. In addition to tragedies such as these, anyone who has experienced a shocking or dangerous incident (such as a car accident or a robbery) is at risk of developing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and exhibiting signs of trauma.

PTSD is a serious mental disorder that requires medical treatment. PTSD can have devastating effects on every aspect of a person’s life, from their marriage and family, to their friendships and career. If you’re concerned that a loved one may be suffering from PTSD, here are some signs of trauma to look out for.

Reliving the Trauma

Someone with PTSD will have repeated, involuntary re-experiences of the event. They may experience bad dreams or flashbacks. They’re also vulnerable to certain triggers that remind them of what happened, such as sounds or smells. These experiences can range from mildly unpleasant to extremely disturbing depending on the circumstances of the trauma.

Angry Outbursts

Someone silently suffering from trauma may be prone to anger, agitation, or sadness. As a result, the sufferer may be prone to outbursts of anger that they can’t control. They may show impatience, yell, or even resort to violence. If you’ve noticed your loved one frequently losing control and lashing out in anger, this is a sign that they’re suffering emotionally and require treatment.

Withdrawal

People suffering from PTSD will avoid people and situations that are reminders of the situation. Truly, it is a protective response to remove yourself from anything that could potentially trigger their trauma response. As the victim continues to isolate themselves, how their friends and family react to their withdrawal will likely further isolate them, causing additional emotional distress.

Substance Abuse

It’s not uncommon for people with PTSD to self-medicate. In order to seek an escape from difficult emotions, they may turn to drugs or alcohol. The painful trademark of substance abuse is the growing need for more of the drug to produce the same high. If left untreated, as substance abuse grows, the abuse will turn to addiction and eventually dependence. This can have devastating effects on every facet of a person’s life.

If you’re concerned that a loved one is experiencing signs of trauma, the most important thing you can do is encourage them to seek treatment. You can help by contacting offices and vetting therapists on their behalf, and volunteer to take them to an appointment. Assure them of your love and support throughout the process.

For additional guidance and recommendations from a licensed professional, please give our office a call at (910) 202-4326.

Evolution Wellness is offering online therapy sessions for new and existing clients.

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