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Effects of Trauma

a young woman is crying and another person reaches out to console her and explains the effects of trauma

When you go through a traumatic experience, your stress-coping abilities are temporarily overloaded. Some of the effects of trauma exposure are physical in nature. Others are psychological. Your system is designed to help you naturally resolve the impact of trauma. However, this built-in recovery mechanism doesn’t always work. You may need help from a trauma therapy program to recover. This kind of program addresses both the physical and mental effects of trauma. To better understand the impact of trauma, reach out to Evoke Waltham today at 866.276.1920.

Immediate or Short-Term Effects of Trauma

When you go through a traumatic experience, your stress-coping abilities can temporarily overload you. This can lead to a variety of physical and psychological effects.

Psychological Effects

Immediately after going through trauma, you may experience a wide range of emotional reactions. The list of these reactions includes:

  • Extreme fear or terror
  • A sense of helplessness
  • Denial of the reality of what occurred
  • Feelings such as anxiety, anger, sadness, or guilt
  • A sense of being overwhelmed or out of control
  • Detachment from reality or a sense of numbness

The short-term psychological effects of trauma can also alter the way you think. For example, you may find it hard to concentrate or remember things. You may also replay the traumatic event over and over in your mind.

Physical Effects

There are also immediate physical effects of trauma exposure. Some people feel faint or nauseous. Others feel extremely tired. You may start shivering or sweating, and your muscles may tremble uncontrollably. Heart rate and blood pressure increases are also standard. So is an unusual sense of jitteriness.

Trauma’s Delayed Impact

The short-term effects of trauma are fairly predictable. In addition, they often fade without causing you any further problems. However, you may also experience delayed responses to trauma exposure. As a rule, responses in this second category are more problematic. That’s true because they indicate that the impact of your experience is lingering. It’s this kind of lingering impact that can lead to PTSD or other trauma-related problems like addiction.

Psychological Impacts

The potential delayed psychological effects of trauma include anxiety and depression. They also include an unstable mood and outbursts of anger or hostility. In addition, you may feel shame, unresolved grief, or a general sense of emotional vulnerability. Delayed effects on your thought processes can include:

  • Unwanted or intrusive recall of what happened
  • A powerful urge to forget what happened
  • A lack of trust in your emotions or thoughts
  • Problems making decisions

You may also blame yourself for your own experiences.

Physical Impacts

Nightmares and disturbed sleep are common signs of the delayed physical effects of trauma. So change in your appetite and your body’s ability to digest food. You may also feel constantly fatigued. In addition, you may feel jumpy or tense all or most of the time. Lingering stress also increases your risk for several chronic health problems.

How Trauma Therapy Can Help

Trauma therapy helps you undo trauma’s psychological and physical effects. The core of successful treatment is typically cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). This therapy helps you understand how and why trauma continues to affect you. It also allows you to face your trauma reactions and overcome them.

Learn More About the Effects of Trauma at Evoke Waltham

Want to know more about how trauma can affect you? Talk to the professionals at Evoke Waltham. We’ll help you understand the full scope of your potential trauma reactions. We can also help clarify if you need trauma therapy during your recovery.

Trauma services are just part of Evoke Waltham’s full slate of treatment resources. In all cases, your therapy is customized and matched to your overall recovery plan. For more information on how we can help you cope with trauma’s delayed effects, contact us today at 866.276.1920. You can also complete our online form.