The Power of Understanding the Role of Trauma in Mental Health Challenges 

The Power of Understanding the Role of Trauma in Mental Health Challenges 

It’s safe to say that how we view and treat mental health as a society has been a long journey, and one that we’re still very much on. People who suffer from mental health issues and Role of Trauma have often been shunned, stigmatized, ridiculed and sometimes even ignored, and these attitudes have done a lot of harm.  The impact of conditions like depression, anxiety, and OCD are generally misunderstood, and this has to change. If we understand how mental health issues can manifest, we can get a lot better at providing the help that people desperately need. 

One area of mental health that’s deeply neglected is trauma, which is tragic because trauma is truly at the heart of the mental health conditions mentioned above. What are some of the key things we have to understand about trauma and how it affects our lives? Here are a few key perspectives. 

Changing Perspectives on Trauma 

Trauma remains a heavily misunderstood aspect of the human experience, but its effects are felt by millions of people every single day. One of the most important mindset shifts we have to make is understanding that we have to expand what we categorize as trauma. While there are massive traumas like abuse, war or an accident – there are other experiences that can affect us too. It could be the rejection of a parent, the end of a relationship or even hurtful words of people in our lives. These things can take on a life of their own and become things people struggle with. If we gain a broader understanding of how role of trauma can impact us, we can help people get the help they need to heal. 

The Connection Between Trauma and Addiction 

Looking at addiction in isolation often leads to a deep underestimation of what people are going through, but when we start to understand that addiction is absolutely tied into traumatic experiences, we can help people heal from the underlying challenge they are facing. According to The Lakehouse Recovery Center, a Westlake village rehab center, “Some people turn to drugs and alcohol to cope with the emotions associated with a trauma. At the time of the trauma, it’s sometimes easier to block it out or suppress the memory than to deal with it. Over time, the trauma starts interfering with daily functioning.” When addicts are given the room to uncover, face and address the initial trauma, they can start leading healthier and happier lives. 

Understanding Complex PTSD 

A lot of strides have been made in understanding post-traumatic stress and how someone can continue to experience the immediate effects of a difficult event. As much as we understand more, we still have a long way to go, especially in the realm of complex PTSD. Healing from  a traumatic event isn’t linear, and very often people who have managed to move forward following a challenging event still experience sporadic relivings of it. For example, many people will have emotional flashbacks that take them right back into the event. When we go through something catastrophic, our brains can protect us by blocking out some memories from that experience, but those memories can be triggered by familiar sights, sounds, smells and other stimuli. This is how trauma can keep manifesting and affect people for a long time after the event.

Solving Alienation 

Many people who struggle with mental health also struggle with feeling alienated, and feeling like they are the only ones facing their challenges. This is partly because of how their challenges are misunderstood and often even stigmatized. There’s a fear of opening up because they think they will be rejected or ridiculed. This makes it hard for them to open up and unburden themselves, which is a critical piece of the healing process. As a society, we have to encourage people to discuss their traumatic experience, get the help they need through therapy, and show them that they aren’t facing their challenges all alone. This can help them not fall into self-destructive behaviors and give them the tools to heal.  

Leading a healthy life isn’t just about our bodies, it’s also about our minds and our emotions. In a world where so many people are struggling with their mental health and with issues like role of trauma, this area of human life needs to be prioritized and understood on a deeper level. If we can, as a society, put an effort into this, we can truly change lives and also change the lives of their family and friends. Mental wellness shouldn’t be overlooked, neglected or ignored and any step we can take towards changing this will be a tremendous leap forward for our society. 

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