Did you know June is National PTSD Awareness Month? PTSD Awareness Month is a national campaign devoted to bringing more awareness and knowledge about PTSD to everyone.
“Greater understanding and awareness of PTSD will help Veterans and others recognize symptoms, and seek and obtain needed care.” – Dr. Paula P. Schnurr, Executive Director of the National Center for PTSD
What is PTSD?
PTSD stands for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. People may develop PTSD when they are exposed or witness something traumatic like war, physical violence, sexual violence, auto accidents and much more. After such events, a person may start suffering from symptoms if they were unable to process what happened to them or what they witnessed. The symptoms might include:
- Disturbing memories, thought
- Have trouble sleeping
- Feel irritable or angry
- Have trouble concentrating
- Feel hyper-vigilant or on guard for fear of danger
- Experience flashback memories
There is a website www.ptsd.va.gov that has been set up to help people learn more about PTSD and treatment options. Once treatment option that they talk about is EMDR Therapy. EMDR Therapy is an Evidence Based Treatment, which means that there is research that backs up the efficacy of using EMDR Therapy to treat PTSD successfully.
What is EMDR Therapy?
EMDR Therapy (or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy) is an integrative therapy that helps people heal from Traumatic events as well as, life disturbing experiences. Discovered by Dr. Francine Shapiro, EMDR Therapy has gottenworldwide attention for helping millions of people heal from PTSD (Posttraumatic Stress Disorder) caused from traumatic events, such as; rape, sexual abuse, auto accidents and combat.
EMDR Therapy can also help people who feel distress in their lives to heal and feel more whole after events that have been disturbing such as; divorce, life transitions, grief, anxiety and much more.
When people are experiencing distress in their lives and can’t find a way to fix it on their own, they end up coming in for EMDR Therapy. Sometimes events happen in a person’s life and he/she struggles to find a way to integrate that incident. That event can become an unprocessed memory and get stored in the brain creating symptoms that are uncomfortable. Physical sensations, emotions, thoughts, and images associated with the event can get locked into the brain, and without treatment, may lead to distressing symptoms and behaviors.
EMDR Therapy is designed to help a person identify and process these stuck pieces so that the symptoms can decrease and one can feel more alive and less distressed. EMDR Therapy helps facilitate the activation of the brain’s inherent system to process and integrate the information that got stored or stuck. EMDR Therapy will not erase the memory; rather you will be able to remember the story without all the emotional charge that was distressing before the treatment.
Resources for PTSD
As a part of National PTSD Awareness Month, it is important to help those who are suffering from PTSD find the resources they need to start the healing process. EMDR Therapy is one of the many resources available to help those suffering from PTSD. If you (or someone you know) may want to learn more about or experience EMDR Therapy, please search the EMDR Therapist Directory on this website to find a trained EMDR Therapist in your area.
Here are other resources available to learn more about PTSD and EMDR Therapy:
- VA National Center for PTSD
- NIMH (National Institute of Mental Health)
- NAMI.org (National Alliance on Mental Illness)
- EMDRIA.org (EMDR International Association)
Image Source: VA National Center for PTSD