Healing From Trauma
We all experience stress from time to time and for the most part, our bodies, minds, and spirits are equipped to deal with everyday stress. But sometimes an event or set of circumstances can be so stressful and overwhelming that we do not fully recover and are left with symptoms of traumatic stress.
The body and brain take over in an effort to protect us and life is then experienced through the lens of traumatic stress—responding to our environment with reactions of fight, flight, or freeze. This is largely an automatic or unconscious response but can wreak havoc in our lives and relationships.
How I Can Support You
As a trauma therapist, I support clients in navigating the healing process connected with trauma and reducing symptoms of traumatic stress. Together we determine a course of treatment that combines talk therapy, narrative therapy, and experiential practices such a mindfulness, grounding, and body-centered approaches to release trauma stored in the body and the brain.
With years of experience working with clients impacted by trauma, I know that healing is possible.
Have you experienced a traumatic event?
What often happens after a traumatic event is that everyday stress becomes amplified and we no longer feel equipped to meet the challenges of life or our overall functioning is compromised.
Symptoms of traumatic stress can occur immediately following the event or may be delayed for weeks, months, or even years. They may be activated by a trigger in present day that reminds us (either consciously or unconsciously) of something associated with the trauma.
Symptoms of Traumatic Stress
Arousal is the body, mind, and nervous system being on alert, sometimes called hypervigilance but sometimes it’s subtler. It might mean you are easily irritated, angered or feel anxious, unsafe, or uncomfortable in your own skin. You may have difficulty falling asleep or fall asleep easily only to awaken to the slightest sound and then have trouble returning to sleep. You may startle easily. Arousal might cause you to freeze or feel paralyzed by a sense of impending doom. You may have difficulty making decisions or taking action in your life.
Avoidance is the feeling of wanting to run or turn away from your discomfort and seek relief from overwhelming thoughts and feelings. You may find yourself easily distracted or you have a tendency toward isolation. It may take enormous effort just to get out of bed and face the day. Addiction, substance use, and compulsive behaviors are common attempts to cope as the body and the unconscious seek to escape the intense discomfort associated with traumatic stress.
Re-experiencing the trauma may come in the form of nightmares, flashbacks or the body in some way reliving the trauma. You may experience confusion between past and present. You may be haunted by a sense of responsibility for what happened, replaying the situation over and over, thinking “if I had just done x y or z, this terrible thing would not have happened”. This is a protective way the mind is trying to make sense of what’s happened and experience some sense of control over the powerlessness of the reality that something devastating did occur.
Therapy for Trauma & Stress in Sacramento
Please don't hesitate to reach out to me if you need support.