Trauma comes in many shapes and forms. Post-traumatic stress disorder occurs in civilians at a rate of 13 times more than in military personnel. Risk and resilience factors demonstrate a person’s predisposition to effects of trauma. Learn more about trauma, its effects and how it can help people grow.
Effects of Trauma
Different types of trauma-childhood trauma, sudden trauma, ongoing trauma, physical trauma, emotional trauma-impact how a person thinks and behaves in the world. Individuals respond differently and develop adaptive behaviors which are either healthy or unhealthy depending on the type of trauma and the individual. Some people experience distress while others grow stronger from traumatic experiences. Distress can often shift to growth over time under the right conditions such a abstinence from drugs and alcohol and with adequate social support.
Survival from Trauma
One of the positive effects of being a trauma survivor is that trauma can build stronger defenses to future stress and traumatic events. When a physical wound heals, scar tissue grows stronger than injured tissue, offering additional protection against further injury. Mental scars also provide growth and protection from future injury. One example of growth occurs in people with psychosis. A new review explored patient outcomes following the first episode of psychosis. The first episode may be traumatic but post-traumatic growth occurs with positive outcomes such as the following:
- Development of positive traits
- Making positive, healthy lifestyle changes
- Development of stronger connection with others
- Appreciation of life
- Positive spiritual effects
Five general areas can be positively impacted by traumatic events. The following are included in the list:
- New opportunities and possibilities open
- Relationships grow closer
- Sense of mastery over adversity develops which increases inner strength
- Feelings of gratitude and appreciation for life grow stronger
- Spirituality and religious beliefs grow deeper and stronger
In spite of the positive effects from trauma, some people may not be as resilient. Some individuals struggle with the effects of trauma which can impact mental and physical health over time.
Scars from Trauma
The thoughts and feelings associated with traumatic experiences can be overwhelming and impact a person’s ability to function. Other times, alcohol, drugs or food can be used to soothe uncomfortable symptoms which then become dangerous addictions. New treatments are available to support individuals through traumatic circumstances. Conventional therapies can also help bridge the gap between distress and growth. People who experience trauma can benefit from an array of services which are designed to support long term recovery and health in spite of early traumatic experiences. It is not possible to erase traumatic events from a person’s past, but the right help can put a person on the right track away from addiction towards a healthy future and positive outlook on life.
The Villa believes in human resiliency. We are here to provide support and tools to help you recover from addiction, trauma and substance abuse issues which hinder healthy growth and progress. Call us to find out how we can help you move towards recovery.