Trauma is defined as an overwhelming and deeply disturbing life experience. Psychological trauma can occur in response to being exposed to any number of events that cause an overwhelming flood of distress. This can be the result of one very specific challenging event or repeated stressful experiences. The severity of a person’s experience of a traumatic event will often determine its level of residual impact and the best course of treatment.
Those who experience trauma often feel unsafe, angry, untrusting, misunderstood and alone in the world.
Many individuals will struggle to cope with the basic activities of daily living (ADLs), with interpersonal social interactions and can struggle to maintain healthy relationships.
For young adults and adolescents, this can also result in poor school performance, decision-making and an inability to pursue healthy independence. The effects of trauma can often be physical, manifesting in poor sleep, bodily pain, traumatic flashbacks and night terrors.