Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER (PTSD)
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a severe mental health condition that results from experiencing a traumatic event or multiple traumatic events (death, war, serious injury, terrorist attack, childhood neglect and abuse, domestic and/or sexual violence perpetrated on us or others, repeatedly hearing the details of or having to deal with the devastating effects of trauma if you work in any emergency services). While anyone can be affected by PTSD, not everyone who witnesses a traumatic event will develop PTSD. Symptoms of PTSD can start immediately for some people, but for others it could take six months or even years for symptoms to become noticeable. PTSD is usually triggered by a memory of the traumatic event which can severely affect daily functioning and quality of life.
Signs and Symptoms of PTSD
The signs and symptoms of PTSD can vary over time and intensity and from person to person. Feelings of sadness, fear/anxiety, anger and grief are common after a traumatic event and are part of a normal grieving process which usually resolves as we recover with the support of family and friends. However, for some people, these feelings linger and require professional help in order to effectively resolve them. Seek help if you identify with the signs and symptoms listed below:
Re-experiencing the trauma
Symptoms may include:
- intrusive and distressing memories and thoughts
- severe reactions to things that remind us of the trauma
- flashbacks of the trauma
- reliving the event resulting in rapid heartbeat or difficulty breathing
Avoidance of reminders of the event
Reminders may include:
Negative changes in thoughts and mood
Symptoms may include:
- a heightened sense of danger/hypervigilance
- forgetting part of the traumatic event
- blaming others or yourself for the event or its aftermath
- feeling emotionally nub or very down/depressed
- unable to enjoy things that you used to find pleasurable
- feeling detached or cut off from people
Feeling “on edge” or overly aroused
Symptoms may include:
- reckless behaviour
- violent/angry outbursts
- getting startled easily/feeling “jumpy”
- insomnia (difficulty getting to or staying asleep)
- difficulty concentrating
PTSD impacts people in different ways and sometimes the feelings of despair, loneliness and sense of isolation can cause people to become irritable, angry or overwhelmed. Inability to talk about these feelings leads to social withdrawal or even taking it out on their family or those closest to them. Some people are unable to work, while others bury themselves in their work. Others become hypervigilant and overprotective of loved ones.
Seeking professional help is essential to help you resolve PTSD. At LDPS we use a multifactorial approach for the assessment of PTSD. Our main interventions include The Richards Trauma Process, neurofeedback and biomedical interventions such as nutritional support if depression and anxiety are also present.
Biomedical interventions include testing for neurotransmitter imbalances, genetic variants that predispose a person to anxiety, depression, PTSD, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Dietary changes and nutritional supplements may be necessary depending upon the results.
qEEG guided neurofeedback is a safe, non-invasive, drug-free method of returning the autonomic nervous system to calm and balance by targeting those areas in the brain that have been dysregulated by the trauma. Neurofeedback restores the functioning of the cerebral cortex and regulates the limbic system, thus providing a balance between sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems.
The Richards Trauma Process (TRTP)TM is a comprehensive, safe and effective therapy designed to resolve the causes of trauma-related issues such as anxiety, fears, phobias, depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The person is guided to move from a state of victimhood to one of empowerment where the body knows that the traumatic event is over and that they are now safe.
An initial assessment involves a qEEG (quantified electroencephalogram) to determine which brain areas are dysregulated and a clinical interview to decide the most effective interventions.
Please call our office on 9639 7778 to book an assessment or Click Here to submit an enquiry form.