Post-traumatic stress disorder, often referred to as PTSD for short, stems from experiencing intense trauma. PTSD is not the same as stress. It is much more severe and symptomatic. In addition, not everyone who undergoes trauma, even extreme, will end up with PTSD.
Multiple criteria must be met for someone to be diagnosed with PTSD. The biggest of these is a stressor, an event or period of time when the trauma was experienced. Beyond the presence of a stressor, other criteria include intrusive symptoms, avoidance of past trauma, and negative mood changes. A PTSD treatment program offers a comprehensive approach to reducing symptomology and helping people overcome the damage their past trauma has caused.
How PTSD Treatment Programs Address the Root of Trauma
PTSD is a type of mental health disorder with a definitive root cause. Some of the biggest root causes of PTSD are death, serious injury, or sexual or physical abuse. Many people who experience sexual abuse as children have PTSD later in life. Another demographic that PTSD is common in is war veterans. Nonetheless, simply experiencing trauma, even when it is severe, does not guarantee that someone will have PTSD. Several risk factors influence whether someone will have PTSD following intense trauma. These risk factors include:
- A lack of support
- Previous trauma experiences
- Life stressors
- Existing mental health issues
The PTSD treatment program at Evoke Wellness at Cohasset tries to gather an understanding of risk factors and background in a comprehensive client evaluation. This happens immediately when someone enters treatment and forms the basis for crafting an individualized approach to treatment.
PTSD Therapy Program Treatment Methods
Treatment for PTSD does not focus on curing the disorder. Like other mental health disorders, PTSD is not considered curable in the classic sense. Instead, treatment focuses on alleviating symptoms and helping people process the trauma they experienced. Given time, treatment may even eliminate some symptoms stemming from PTSD. Most of the time, PTSD therapy programs combine medication, therapy, and alternative approaches to produce the best outcomes. Each component of treatment is fleshed out more below.
Medications used to treat mood and anxiety disorders can also be leveraged in treating PTSD. SSRIs are an excellent example of this. Zoloft and Paxil are two types of SSRIs that are FDA-approved for treating PTSD. They support symptom reduction and quality of life by targeting anxiety, depression, sleep issues, and more.
Cognitive processing therapy and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy are two forms of therapy that see the wide application in the treatment of PTSD. Cognitive processing therapy focuses on how people see their trauma and choose to cope with it. Sessions help people work through elements of their trauma that have them stuck.
EMDR therapy is a technique that uses eye movements and sensory input to aid people in processing memories, thoughts, or emotions related to their trauma. This therapy is built on the premise that trauma can freeze the brain, keeping it stuck in a loop of never getting beyond the trauma or being able to process what happened.
3. Alternative Approaches
The implementation of alternative approaches often offsets PTSD counseling. Acupuncture and trauma-sensitive yoga are alternative methods that some PTSD therapy programs implement alongside traditional treatments.
Evoke’s PTSD Treatment Program in Massachusetts
Evoke Wellness at Cohasset offers a leading PTSD treatment program in Massachusetts. Reach out to 866.931.6429 to learn more about how we apply PTSD counseling to improve your quality of life.