Understanding What Trauma Is

Our understanding of trauma is surprisingly young. The term “PTSD” which stands for post-traumatic stress disorder, was not thoroughly developed or used until the 1970s after the Vietnam War. Severe psychological distress, a propensity for addiction and self-destruction, and an obvious disconnect between mind and body, were taking over the lives of veterans returning from war. Psychologists began to understand that the impact of what a solider sees on the battlefield affects more than his mind. It changes the way he operates on a neurobiological level.

Veterans of war was not the only place we gathered an understanding of trauma. Trauma is a term used in the medical field to describe a type of wound, an impact to the body, a severe injury needing immediate and critical care.

After years of examining the psychological effects of trauma on veterans, realizing the connection to physical traumas experienced in emergency rooms and hospitals, professionals saw a pattern happening to everyday people. Life events, ordinary and unordinary alike, were having similar effects on people. Eventually, professionals came to understand that trauma can happen to anyone and the effects of trauma were not restricted to the development of PTSD.

Trauma can come from anywhere in life, at any time, to any person, in any way. What looks like trauma, acts like trauma, and feels like trauma to one individual may mean absolutely nothing to another individual. The immense diversity in traumatic experiences and trauma responses can make identifying trauma extremely difficult. Especially due to the stigma that trauma is reserved for war veterans or people who experience extreme gruesome violence, identifying that one’s experiences are traumatic are challenging. Trauma has an intense impact on life, changing the way the body and the brain relate to one another, as well as the world around them. Trauma is any life event which drastically changes how one views the world and everything within the world, including themselves.

People will live their entire lives under the influence of trauma that they never realized was trauma at all. In response, they develop coping behaviors, mental illnesses, addictions, and other destructive, harmful patterns which keep them imprisoned in their trauma and prevent them from healing. Healing and transformation is possible. Hope is alive. If you’ve experienced trauma, the time is now to seek recovery. 

Learning to be is part of the process of trauma recovery. Stop the cycle of merry-go-round treatment and find the solution you’re looking for in trauma treatment. Through effective residential treatment, Khiron House helps you find the path you need toward health and wellness in recovery. For information, call us today. UK: 020 3811 2575 (24 hours). USA: (866) 801 6184 (24 hours).