Trauma can be a life-altering event. It can cause physical and emotional damage that may take years to heal if it ever heals. It’s estimated that about 60% of men can experience this kind of trauma, while half of the women can also be exposed to it.
The effects of trauma can be far-reaching, impacting every aspect of your life. If you’re struggling to cope with the aftermath of a traumatic event, you’re not alone. Here are some ways trauma can ruin your life and what you can do to begin the healing process.
The physical effects of trauma are often the most obvious. For example, if you’ve been in a car accident, you may have visible scars or broken bones. But the physical damage goes deeper than that. Trauma can also cause organ damage, chronic pain, and headaches. And those are just the physical effects that can be seen outside. Trauma can also lead to problems with digestion, sleep, and immunity—problems that aren’t always visible to others but can be just as debilitating.
Mental Health Problems
The mental health effects of trauma are often more subtle than the physical ones, but they can be just as damaging—and sometimes even more so. Trauma can lead to anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other mental health issues. These conditions can make it hard to function in day-to-day life. You may have trouble sleeping, concentrating, or maintaining healthy relationships. You may feel hopeless, helpless, or numb. If you’re struggling with mental health problems after a traumatic event, it’s essential to seek professional help. A therapist can provide support and guidance as you work through your challenges.
Impact Your Job Performance
The fallout from trauma doesn’t just affect your personal life; it can also significantly impact your professional life. For example, if you’re struggling with anxiety or depression, you may have difficulty meeting deadlines or performing well at work meetings or presentations. Or, if you’re dealing with PTSD, you may relive the traumatic event repeatedly during the workday, making it hard to focus on your job duties. The good news is that there are steps you can take to protect your job performance after a traumatic event—steps like seeking therapy, building a support network at work, and taking time off when needed—. Still, it’s essential, to be honest about how much you can handle before returning to work full-time.
The emotional fallout from trauma doesn’t just affect your relationship with yourself—it can also disrupt your close personal relationships. For example, if you’re struggling with depression or PTSD, you may find yourself withdrawing from friends and family members or lashing out at them when they don’t understand what you’re going through. Or, if you’re dealing with anxiety or chronic pain, you may avoid social situations altogether out of fear that something will trigger a panic attack or flare-up of symptoms. The key to maintaining healthy relationships after a traumatic event is open communication about what you’re going through and your needs in terms of support from loved ones.
Trauma is a life-altering event with far-reaching consequences beyond the initial incident itself. If you’re struggling to cope with the aftermath of trauma, consider these options.
A new treatment is known to help alleviate the symptoms of trauma, such as anxiety and depression. Ketamine therapy is known to be effective in reducing negative thoughts and emotions and can help you begin to heal after a traumatic event.
Ketamine balances the neurotransmitters in your brain and induces a state of relaxation. During therapy, you are given ketamine intravenously and allowed to rest as it takes effect. Each session lasts about 45 minutes, and most people see results within just a few sessions.
Another option to consider is meditation. This practice has been shown to reduce stress, improve mood, and boost self-confidence—all of which can be helpful when working through the aftermath of a traumatic experience. Consider finding a meditation instructor or downloading an app to learn how to do it at home.
If you need support from others who have experienced trauma, consider joining a group therapy session led by licensed mental health professionals. These sessions provide valuable opportunities for sharing stories, advice, coping strategies, and more in a safe and supportive environment.
One-on-one talk therapy sessions with a therapist can also help you better cope with the aftermath of trauma. A therapist can provide professional insight and guidance and allow you to express your feelings and thoughts safely. If possible, find a therapist who works with people who have experienced trauma.
Trauma is a severe and debilitating issue that can severely affect your health and well-being. If you’re struggling to cope with the aftermath of trauma, consider these options to help manage your symptoms and begin healing from experience.