person trapped in house, graphic illustrating trauma

            ‘PTSD can be caused by a wide range of traumatic events, even without predisposing conditions.

Sufferers often experience feelings of panic or extreme fear, which may resemble the emotions which were felt during the traumatic event.’

Exposure to multiple traumas, especially childhood sexual abuse, has been proven to lead to a cluster of symptoms now known as complex post-traumatic stress disorder (C-PTSD), which differs from PTSD both in diagnosis and treatment.

The term post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) was first included in the DSM-111 in 1980, to formally diagnose those survivors who had experienced extreme stress or trauma, particularly the returned Vietnam veterans who were seeking treatment for effects of combat stress. A PTSD diagnosis has been proven to be more relevant for people who are traumatised from the result of single-incident traumas, such as witnessing a murder, a natural disaster, terrorist attack or a single instance of sexual abuse. These are unexpected incidents from which the witness or victim is unable to move on, or to integrate after a reasonable period of time.

Symptoms such as flashbacks, panic attacks and depression along with a range of other maladaptive coping behaviours, including drug and alcohol abuse and avoidance of people/places that remind them of the trauma, are contained within in the diagnosis of PTSD.

It later became apparent that PTSD did not account for the more complicated cluster of reactions and symptomatology presented by victims of prolonged abuse such as domestic violence and sexual abuse. The major difference between PTSD and C-PTSD is the loss of a coherent sense of self, which may be expressed through dissociative disorders along with multiple other symptoms. Exposure to complex trauma by children, in particular, results in a loss of the capacity for self-regulation and healthy inter-personal relationships.

Complex trauma arises from prolonged, repetitive stress offered to the victims by persons who were in a position of trust, such as parents, caregivers or other adults in positions of authority. This could be caused by extreme harm or abandonment and the effects would be greatest if they occurred in early childhood whilst critical parts of the brain were still under formation.

The treatment for either PTSD or C-PTSD have some similarities but treatment of C-PTSD is likely to be long term and multifaceted. Counselling for both, however, has been proven to have the greatest benefits in allowing the trauma survivor to regain a full and productive life.

This is a summary of an article in my Newsletter; read the full article.

Carole's consultations are Covid Safe
Carole's consultations are Covid Safe

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

The Federal Health Minister, Greg Hunt, has advised that “ALL allied health businesses nationally can continue working and are encouraged to do”. He has encouraged providers to continue vital face-to-face services where possible.

These are challenging times for everyone, but your personal and relationship issues continue to need assistance. My practice is still open for hypnotherapy and individual or relationship counselling, including Rekindle the Love workshops.

If you are sick or have come into contact with the Coronavirus at any point, and/or if you have recently been overseas, please stay at home and contact me on 0407 009 050 to reschedule your appointment.

The safety of my clients and wider community is of utmost importance to me, and my home-based clinic is fully compliant with the new social distancing rules and hygiene practices. I have ensured that appointments are staggered so that you and your partner, where appropriate, are the only clients visiting my practice, at any one time.

Video and tele-consult sessions are available for both individuals and couples, including a program for couples to complete a Rekindle the Love workshop, online.

Please contact me for more information.

Coronavirus and social isolation will add to existing pressure points on relationships, so don’t let your marriage become a coronavirus casualty.

Read the article by Hayley Gleeson of the ABC “How to stay married through Coronavirus“.

I thank you for your continued support in these uncertain times and know that together we will get through this.