What causes trauma?
Trauma is caused by experiencing an intense, emotional event. June is PTSD Awareness Month and it could not be a better time to spread awareness about Trauma and PTSD. Understanding the cause for trauma can be the first step in identifying whether or not you have PTSD. The current political climate is chaotic, Black Lives Matter protests are picking up throughout the country, and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is affecting all of our lives. We need to use this time to check in with each other and to check in with ourselves to identify how we may be experiencing trauma symptoms.
How do I know if I have experienced trauma?
Traumatic reactions are normal responses to abnormal situations. Many of the experiences you may currently be dealing with can be traumatizing. Trauma can be experienced in many ways, whether due to medical experiences, racism, police conflict, grief, or other circumstances. These are abnormal times, but your response is not abnormal. Your trauma experience is valid, your pain matters, and your healing matters.
How do I know if I have PTSD?
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Trauma are often used interchangeably, but though these two issues are related, they are different. According to the American Psychological Association, a diagnosis of PTSD requires exposure to an upsetting traumatic event. However, exposure could be indirect rather than first hand, or could occur on an ongoing basis. Many people who are exposed to a traumatic event experience symptoms in the days following the event. For a person to be diagnosed with PTSD, however, symptoms last for more than a month and often persist for months and sometimes years.