Trauma therapy for PTSD: What to expect.

A man looks concerned as their therapist writes on their clipboard. This could represent trauma therapy in Colorado Springs, CO. Contact a trauma therapist for support with PTSD treatment and other services.

You’ve been thinking about reaching out to a therapist for a while now.  You know your past trauma is still affecting you. It’s holding you back.  You may have trouble sleeping, and it’s impacting your relationships.  Or, you may be fighting for months on end but then some little trigger brings everything to the surface.

The problem is that you don’t know what to expect.  You might have been to a therapist before but didn’t actually feel like it helped. Or you’ve never been to a therapist before and didn’t think you were the “therapy” type.  But now you feel like something needs to change in your life.  And you’re wondering if trauma therapy will work.

You May Feel Uncomfortable

So, let’s start with the obvious here.  This is what keeps many people from starting trauma therapy even when they’re struggling with PTSD. And it’s true, there will be moments in therapy sessions that feel uncomfortable. You may even cry.  And it’s normal to dread that.

But, also know that avoidance maintains PTSD. So, the longer you avoid facing this, the longer you may be living with symptoms of PTSD. The more you shove it down, the stronger the memories or emotions will come to the surface.  The best way to get “over” the past is through facing it with PTSD treatment.

At the same time, know that you don’t face all of your emotions & triggers at once.

Your Trauma Therapist Will Meet You Where You’re At

A therapist holding a clipboard gestures as their client sits across from them. This could represent trauma therapy in Colorado Springs, CO. Contact a trauma therapist to learn more about posttraumatic stress disorder in Colorado and other services.

Every person’s journey through PTSD treatment is a little bit different.  Your therapist has a general map to get you to a place of healing, but the exact route we take will depend on many factors. At Altitude Counseling, our therapists use effective research-based approaches to therapy for PTSD. These include Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). While these approaches include specific techniques that your therapist has the training to use, they’re also very personalized. Your therapist can meet you right where you’re at and take things at a pace that works for you.

For example, when a trauma therapist is using EMDR to help target past traumas you’ve experienced, early in treatment you spend time focused on something called “resourcing.” This helps you use the innate strength within yourself to stay calm to cope with strong emotions.  I know it sounds a bit confusing right now. But, this is a very gentle part of the therapy (not facing any of the “bad” stuff head-on) but essential.  Your therapist will work with you to individualize this experience. Some people may move through this phase of PTSD treatment fast. At the same time, others may need to focus on it for longer and come back to it more often.

Childhood Trauma vs. One Time Trauma

Of the many, many factors that can impact what trauma therapy looks like for you, this is one of the big ones.  You may have grown up experiencing childhood abuse and neglect for years.  This trauma wasn’t treated and affected how you view the world around you.  Your “normal” was a life where your needs weren’t met.  This was chronic childhood abuse.

Or, you may have lived a pretty ok childhood. But, something traumatic and unexpected happened to you as an adult. A sexual assault, a house fire, a bad car accident, or traumatically losing a loved one.  We call this single incident trauma.

Both of these situations can lead to PTSD symptoms.  And at the surface, both are treated in a similar way. But the brain responds to them in different ways.  So, do know that if a friend or loved one is describing their experience with trauma therapy.

Trauma Therapy in Colorado Works

A woman on top of a mountain raises her hands in victory. This could represent overcoming posttraumatic stress disorder in Colorado. Contact a trauma therapist in Colorado Springs, CO for support with trauma therapy and other services.

When we’re talking about what to expect from trauma therapy, we must address this point: It works.

I know that you’ve tried to “get over” what happened on your own.  And sometimes it felt like it worked, but then everything came back as strong as before.  At this point, you’re so tired of feeling haunted by what happened. Now, you’re considering coming in for trauma therapy. But the truth is, you aren’t sure if it’ll work. It’s hard to believe.

Know that your trauma therapist will hold onto hope for you when you start working together. Why? Because we’ve seen person after person who stuck it out. They’ve worked with their therapist to find healing and wholeness again.  We’ve seen people who have PTSD from a single very bad incident feel like themself again and move forward stronger than ever.  We’ve also worked with people who experienced abuse and neglect year after year as a child. They went through more trauma as an adult only to find happiness and emotional freedom for the first time.  No, you aren’t just like any of our past clients.  You are your own person, so your healing will look different.  But the point is this: your therapist has confidence that you too can find healing.

Begin Trauma Therapy & PTSD Treatment in Colorado

You can find healing.  You deserve to find healing.  Therapy can help reduce your symptoms of PTSD so you can start enjoying life again.  If you live in the state of Colorado, the therapists at Altitude Counseling can help you take that next step toward healing. To start your therapy journey, follow these steps:

  1. Fill out our appointment request
  2. Get to know our team of therapists
  3. Start your journey through trauma therapy

Other Counseling Services

Trauma therapy and PTSD treatment isn’t the only service offered at our Colorado Springs, CO-based counseling practice. Other mental health services offered include depression counseling, trauma therapy, counseling for emotional neglect, marriage counseling, grief counseling, and anxiety treatment. We also offer online therapy in Colorado, and therapy for men. For more information, feel free to visit our FAQ or blog page!

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300 Garden of the Gods Rd, Ste 200
Colorado Springs, CO 80907
(719) 428-2952

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