Treating PTSD

There are several treatments available to help you cope with your PTSD. Cognitive Behavior Therapy involves speaking with a therapist who will help you recognize and change how you think about the trauma you experienced and how it affects you. The goal of this therapy is to help you understand how your thoughts increase your stress and make your symptoms worse.

Exposure Therapy helps you reduce the fear you feel about the memories of your trauma. In this type of therapy, you will meet repeatedly with a therapist to talk about the trauma as you learn to gain control of your thoughts and feelings. While it may seem contraindicated to think about the very things that cause you stress, thinking about it helps you process what happened and helps you feel less overwhelmed as you progress. Desensitization occurs as you think about those upsetting memories in a controlled environment. Flooding occurs when the therapist asks you to remember a lot of bad memories at one time. It can actually help you learn to not feel so overwhelmed as you’re thinking about what happened.

EMDR is a type of therapy that helps change how you react to memories of your trauma. While you think about your memories, you focus at the same time on another stimulus like eye movements, hand taps, and sounds. Although this therapy is still not completely understood, it has proven through research to reduce the symptoms of PTSD.

We know that when PTSD occurs, chemicals in the brain change affecting the way you feel. Medications such as serotonin reuptake inhibitors act like antidepressants and help reduce your anxiety.

There are other types of treatments for PTSD too, but these are likely to be the main players in your treatment plan.