Here are the Signs – and What You Can Do

Trauma is defined as, “a deeply distressing disturbing experience.” 

Now. Here’s where it gets tricky: “distressing” and “disturbing” are subjective. There’s no one size fits all way of deciphering whether or not something will have a lasting impact. One person may be deeply traumatized by an occurrence – ruminate over it obsessively – while someone else may experience the same event as a mere setback. 

We’ve provided counseling in Fair Oaks, CA for years, and see examples of it over and over. We know firsthand how individuals process traumatic experiences differently.

Some traumatic occurrences such as car accidents, witnessing or being the victim of a brutal crime, or getting attacked by a dog are easy to label and understand. 

After being bit by a dog for example, when a dog bounds toward you now, instinctively. You panic. Your heart starts thudding faster than the tempo of an upbeat mariachi band, and you break into a tingly hot and cold sweat. Every fiber of your being is sounding the alarm bells! Reminding you what happened last time, trying to keep you safe. Trying to save you from going through that experience again. And that’s the traumatic events you remember.

When things happen in childhood that are unexplained and terrifying, we don’t have the ability to fully comprehend or even remember that event. As a consequence, those experiences can shape the course of the rest of our life without us even realizing it.

Being bullied on the playground for example, may have caused you to believe there’s something fundamentally wrong with you. You’re not good enough or don’t measure up in some way. Which is why in order to protect yourself now, you make yourself small. The opinions of playground bullies are now impacting the rest of your life, but you don’t even realize it. You’ve forgotten all about those early moments that shaped that belief in the first place.

Why Does Trauma Exist?

Trauma exists simply to keep us alive. Long after a traumatic experience has passed, the nervous system will pick up on environmental cues that remind it of the traumatic experience, when you’re in a similar situation. Cuing adrenaline and cortisol – screaming danger signs.

During the initial stage of human development, it was highly necessary to be terrified after a lion encounter, and being kicked out of the social tribe was something that could lower chances of survival significantly. Thus, a cavalier attitude toward lions and other people’s opinions decreased chances of survival. 

What are Signs of Unresolved Trauma?

Let’s look at some signs that indicate you may have unresolved trauma:

  • You suffer from anxiety

  • You’re hyper vigilant

  • You tend to get angry and feel regret or remorseful after

  • You isolate

  • You avoid going certain places

  • You feel numb and disconnected

  • You tend to overreact

  • You seek comfort in food, drugs, or alcohol

  • You have trouble sleeping

  • You aren’t connected to your inherent value as a human being

  • Certain situations that other people enjoy make you feel anxious and unsafe

  • You can’t stop replaying a disturbing event through your mind, over and over, perseverating

Note: If you suffer from any of those symptoms, search, ‘counseling near me’ to find a therapist who can help.

In some instances, you may have an inkling that you still haven’t fully processed an upsetting event. In other instances, it may be buried deep. Tangled up with other messy aspects of life. 

Ok, I May Have Unresolved Trauma. Now What?

Trauma encompasses a broad spectrum of occurrences. Rather than judge yourself, avoid interactions, or demand you “toughen up,” understand that you can work through it. 

Unresolved traumas can pile up. Life doles out challenges – sometimes it feels like one on top of another. The more experience you have processing trauma, the more resilient you become, and the quicker you’re able to bounce back. This is known as “post traumatic growth.”

The best way to understand what you’re feeling and learn how to work through it is to see a mental health professional. Your therapist will guide, encourage, and educate as you navigate difficulties, and explore unresolved trauma. 

At the Relationship Therapy Center, our therapists in Fair Oaks, CA have experience helping all sorts of people reclaim control over their lives. In addition, we offer PTSD therapy in Roseville, CA. 

We’re here for you and your family; we’re here to help empower you to reclaim your life. So you can wake up each morning feeling excited about the day.

Begin Trauma Therapy in the Sacramento Area or Online:

Are you ready to find peace and healing after trauma? We are here to support you and provide high-quality evidence-based trauma treatment to people in the Sacramento Area and online for people living in the state of California. To begin trauma therapy in Fair Oaks, CA or Roseville, CA, please follow these steps:

Other Services Offered at The Relationship Therapy Center in California:

In addition to trauma therapy, Our Sacramento area counseling clinics located in Roseville and Fair Oaks, CA are pleased to offer a variety of mental health services. Our couples services include: Couples Counseling, Counseling after infidelity, sex therapy, co-parent counseling, family therapy, divorce counseling, intensive couples retreats, and premarital counseling. Our individual therapy services include anxiety treatment, therapy for children, teen therapy, depression treatment, codependency counseling and individual relationship counseling. Our therapists offer online counseling in California to treat a variety of mental health concerns. Please reach out to our Sacramento area therapy office to learn more about the many ways we can help you or your loved ones.