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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), describes trauma as “an event, or series of events, that causes moderate to severe stress reactions…[that are] characterized by a sense of horror, helplessness, serious injury, or the threat of serious injury or death.”

Trauma is subjective, as every individual is different, and an experience that one individual may perceive to be traumatic, another individual may not. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5). It is defined by the Mayo Clinic as “a mental health condition that’s triggered by a terrifying event—either experiencing it or witnessing it.” Secondary PTSD, also known as vicarious trauma, secondhand trauma, secondary trauma, and PTSD by proxy, is the emotional distress that results when an individual hears about the first-hand trauma experience of another person (e.g., family member, close friend, neighbor, a stranger on the news, etc.). According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, approximately 10 percent of women and five percent of men are likely to experience PTSD at some point in their lifetimes. There are many different methods of treatment for individuals recovering from trauma.

Family Therapy

The Mayo Clinic defines family therapy as “a type of psychological counseling (psychotherapy) that can help family members improve communication and resolve conflicts.” Often family therapy is used in conjunction with other psychotherapeutic approaches in one’s treatment plan for trauma. The Ackerman Institute asserts that family can be a “major source of healing and resilience in overcoming trauma.” The family system derives its motivational energy from the emotion that then is expressed in relationship interaction. Family therapy for PTSD focuses on the relationships between the trauma survivor and his or her family members. Proponents of this kind of therapy emphasize clear communication that allows for all members to safely express emotions. There are certain family therapy strategies that can be more successful in the treatment of trauma than others. Through working with the family, a mental health professional can identify which psychotherapeutic techniques and exercises are helpful in moving the family unit closer to realizing the collective therapeutic goals.

Further Information and Support

Navigating the challenges that arise from living with mental illness, struggling with substance abuse, and/ or addiction can not only be all-consuming but are often impossible to effectively handle without proper support. If you are concerned for yourself or a loved one regarding mental illness, substance abuse, and/ or addiction we recommend reaching out for help as soon as possible. Bear in mind that you do not have to be on this journey alone. At {Upwell Advisors}, we offer unique, customized concierge therapeutic services to provide our clients with unparalleled support throughout every step of the recovery process.

If left untreated, substance abuse, addiction, and/ or mental illness can result in long-lasting and potentially life-threatening consequences. The earlier you seek support, the sooner you and your loved ones can return to leading happy, healthy, and fulfilling lives. Please do not hesitate to reach out for guidance. We welcome the opportunity to discuss how we might best be able to help you or your loved one in the recovery process. Feel free to reach out by phone at 917-475-6775. You are also welcome to contact us anytime via email at info@upwelladvisors.com. We look forward to supporting you on your journey.

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