If children or adolescents have traumatic experiences such as an accident, abuse or mistreatment, they often suffer from problems in several areas of life as a result. You have to constantly think about what you have experienced, have trouble sleeping and nightmares. They feel sad or anxious and withdraw from others. Some get angry quickly, have poor focus, and have trouble at school.
Not every traumatized person develops post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Some people develop some symptoms like those listed above, but they go away after a few weeks. This is known as acute stress disorder (ASD).
If the symptoms last more than a month and seriously affect the person's ability to function, the person may have PTSD. Some people with PTSD do not show symptoms for months after the event itself. And some people deal with PTSD symptoms from a traumatic experience for the rest of their lives. Symptoms of PTSD can escalate into panic attacks, depression, thoughts and feelings of suicide, substance abuse, feelings of isolation, and the inability to complete daily tasks.
COMMON REACTION AND SYMPTOMS OF TRAUMA
People's response to a traumatic event varies widely, but there are some basic, common symptoms.
Emotional signs are:
This can lead to:
Difficulties with relationships
Common physical symptoms:
altered sleep patterns
Changes in appetite
Mental disorders can include:
What is trauma
The longer we live, the more inevitable it is that we will experience trauma. Trauma is the response to a deeply stressful or disturbing event that overwhelms a person's ability to cope, causes feelings of helplessness, decreases their self-esteem and their ability to feel the full range of emotions and experiences.
I specialize in the treatment of traumatized children and adolescents aged 3 to 21 years. My approach is resource-oriented. In addition to coping with and processing the trauma, it is primarily about strengthening skills and looking ahead. In the case of younger children and adolescents, I involve parents or other reference persons (e.g. foster parents, educators).
What exactly happens in trauma therapy?
Before the therapy, the stress is recorded in a detailed clinical-psychological diagnosis with the child or adolescent and with the parents or caregivers and the need for treatment is determined.
At the beginning of the therapy, the child or adolescent and their caregiver receive information about the causes of the existing problems and about the effectiveness of the therapy. The young patients learn strategies that give them relief and security. You practice relaxing and dealing with overflowing feelings and stressful thoughts. Parents receive help in difficult parenting situations.
In the middle part of the therapy, the therapist helps to write down and discuss the traumatic events. This will take away the stressful feelings
and the unwanted memories.
In the third part of the therapy, fears are overcome,
that have existed since the trauma. Children and young people learn how they can shape their lives safely and satisfactorily in the future.