Trauma (PTSD)
Natural Solutions in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch

Learn about the causes of Trauma (PTSD) & find a practitioner in Auckland, Hamilton, Bay of Plenty, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin to help you overcome Trauma (PTSD) within New Zealand.

Trauma can represent physical and mental conditions. Physical trauma can be suffered from injury by a sudden event or impact by an external force. Mental trauma, such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, is a result of a psychological illness brought on by a frightening or life-threatening event.

Causes of post traumatic stress disorder

The reasons why some people develop post traumatic stress disorder while others do not are yet to be fully understood. However, experts have identified certain risk factors which increase the likelihood of developing PTSD after a traumatic experience.

Those with a history of anxiety or depression, or people with a lack of support from family and friends, are seen as being more susceptible to PTSD. Being abused as a child or having a family member with mental health problems also increases the risk.

Genetic factors may also increase the chances of developing PTSD. People with PTSD experience changes to the part of the brain which controls memory and emotion. Known as the 'hippocampus', this area of the brain for people with post traumatic stress disorder appears differently in MRI scans and has a relation to memory difficulties and flashbacks.

Those with PTSD also experience abnormally high hormone levels in their response to stress. The body triggers a chemical reaction when faced with danger but people with PTSD experience this reaction even when no danger is present.


Symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder

When someone experiences a traumatic event they are likely to suffer with certain symptoms of PTSD however these usually pass in the space of a few days or weeks.

Those symptoms can include:

  •     Flashbacks (particularly if reminded of the event by something)
  •     Nightmares
  •     Disturbing thoughts
  •     Sweats
  •     Shaking or trembling
  •     Avoidance (refusing to discuss the event or avoiding being reminded of the event in some way)
  •     Feeling detached from surroundings
  •     Feeling emotionally or physically numb
  •     Loss of interest in day-to-day life
  •     Increased awareness of own mortality
  •     Lack of concentration
  •     Sleep problems
  •     Feelings of guilt
  •     Alcohol abuse
  •     Drug abuse (and then dependency)
  •     Behavioural problems
  •     Relationship problems
  •     Depression
  •     Anxiety
  •     Phobias (especially agoraphobia - fear of open spaces)
  •     Physical problems (headaches, stomach pain, muscle aches)

The symptoms of PTSD can often go into remission only to return more severe than before. Some people suffering with post traumatic stress disorder have constant symptoms with no remission periods whatsoever.


Diagnosis of post traumatic stress disorder

In the first instance after a traumatic event or experience you should visit your GP who will discuss your symptoms and how you are feeling.

The GP may then ask a series of questions specifically designed to help them diagnose if you are suffering with PTSD. If the condition is diagnosed you will usually be referred to a psychological specialist for further tests and treatment



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