The Difficulties of Trauma Therapy: What You Need to Know

Trauma work is one of the most challenging mental health jobs out there. But why is trauma therapy so difficult? It's because emotions need to be felt in order to heal, and this can be a painful process. Trauma therapy is about going back to the past and making sense of what happened in a way that allows you to make peace with it and recognize that the threat is no longer present. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can cause long-term changes in emotions, thinking, and behavior as a direct result of exposure to trauma.If you're considering trauma therapy, it's important to understand that it's a slow process that helps you begin to safely reinterpret painful thoughts and emotions associated with trauma.

You may feel discomfort and overwhelming emotions, so it's important to take it easy and work on mastering relaxation exercises before you start. It's also helpful to ask a trusted friend, loved one, support person, or therapist for suggestions and comments.In your journal, start writing about your traumatic event as an adjunct to therapy or as a self-healing when psychotherapy is not accessible or affordable. My favorite therapies for treating trauma are dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) and prolonged exposure (PE), especially when clients have comorbid PTSD and borderline personality disorder. In vivo exposure involves coming into contact with real people, objects, places or situations associated with the traumatic event.Trauma therapy is about bringing yourself and your world back together after having experienced one or more events that literally and metaphorically destroyed you in a deep and painful way.

This means you have to find all the pieces of yourself, the good, the bad and the ugly. Once the person is comfortable enough in the face of their distressing thoughts, they will be asked to expose themselves to these distressing things in more real settings, including the environment in which the traumatic experience occurred.Re-experiencing the traumatic event in your mind through memories, flashbacks, and nightmares can activate this stress response. It's important to understand that it's not your fault if you haven't dealt with trauma before. In cognitive processing therapy, the therapist will ask the client to write about their traumatic experiences in detail and then read it aloud.

In addition, general coping skills to regulate emotions and keep your feet on the ground are excellent tools for preparing for traumatic work.

Ruth Bupp
Ruth Bupp

Total music maven. Infuriatingly humble pop culture advocate. Proud coffee enthusiast. Infuriatingly humble food scholar. Freelance twitter guru. Evil beer junkie.

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