Trauma and Stress Related Disorders

People have unique ways of responding to and recovering from traumatic or stressful events. This means that not everyone exposed to a traumatic event develop a psychological reaction in response to the event. Exposure to traumatic events has been found to result in abnormal thoughts and behaviors in some individuals.

Trauma and stressor-related disorders are a group of emotional and behavioral problems that may result from exposure to traumatic or stressful events such as childhood neglect, childhood physical/sexual abuse, violence, family conflict, physical assault, sexual assault, change of residential location, natural disaster, an accident or torture.

Post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD), acute stress disorder (ASD) and adjustment disorder are examples of common stress related disorders. Individuals with stress-related disorders have varying symptoms according to the particular disorder and duration of symptoms. The symptoms of stress-related disorders include but not limited to: intrusive memories of the traumatic event in the form of flashbacks (feeling as if you are re-experiencing the event), depression, feelings of hopelessness, negative thoughts, suspiciousness, feeling emotionally numb, avoidance of reminders of traumatic events, trouble sleeping and self-destructive behavior, such as substance abuse. These symptoms cause significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, and other functioning.

Acute stress disorder and Post-traumatic stress disorder: Have similar symptoms but differ in symptoms duration. Symptoms of ASD must be present from 3 days to 1 month while the symptoms of PTSD must be present after one month following exposure to one or more traumatic events. Individuals having symptoms following the traumatic event but resolve by the third day do not have a stress related disorder.

Adjustment disorder: does not have a set of specific symptoms an individual must have to satisfy the diagnosis. However, whatever symptoms the individual is experiencing must be related to the stressor and must be significant enough to impair functioning. Individuals who have an adjustment disorder continue to have emotional or behavioral reactions that can worsen their mental health.

Individuals with trauma and stress related disorders do not have to struggle with the problems on their own. Treatment is available and helps individuals regain their psychological health. Our multidisciplinary team at Synapse-Azalea is proficient in management of stress/trauma and related disorders. We carryout thorough assessment of the stressor, psychoeducation, psychological first aid, stress management, strengthening of positive coping methods and reinforcement of existing social support, for our clients passing through stress and stress related disorders.