Stress, anxiety and trauma.
Most of us experience stress in one form or another from time to time. It’s not always bad to experience stress. Challenging moments may require some measure of stress to face an immediate problem and overcome it. However, when stress or anxiety starts to really disrupt your life, or overwhelms you, then it’s a good idea to get some help. You don’t have to brave it alone.
Stressful reactions disrupt our usual sense of composure when facing everyday problems, building up around key events (stressors). It may be a busy time in your life, a period of transition, or just a particular situation where the demands of the situation are exceeding your capacity to cope. When people are stressed, they might come across as preoccupied, irritable, or act out of character – which can damage relationships. In the long-term, stress can contribute to health problems. Talking with a counsellor or a psychologist can help you to organise your thoughts, break down your problems into more manageable parts, and take some constructive steps to calmly address both the stressful event and your reaction to it.
Anxiety is often related to stress, but also arises from other factors too. Genetics may play some role where anxiety runs in the family, but that doesn’t mean that every person in that family will have anxiety. We know that personality plays a role too, with young children who are perfectionistic, very shy, or focused on control, being more likely to experience anxiety later on in life. Anxiety can also be triggered by some medical problems, or reactions to drugs, or medication. When people are anxious they often experience panic, difficulty sleeping or relaxing, and may find that they ruminate about worst-case scenarios. Talking with a therapist can help you identify what type of anxiety you are experiencing and make some changes. Knowing more about your condition will help you and your therapist work together to alleviate the anxiety. In most cases, psychotherapy helps to change the way you think and feel.
Traumatic events are an unfortunate reality in life. Although people are resilient, it is a perfectly normal human reaction for there to be some situations which will overwhelm any given person. In some cases, people may be able to cope with intense or even life-threatening situations for a time, but if sustained without relief, that can prompt a traumatic reaction. People with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) often report vivid re-experiencing of stressful reactions they had during a traumatic event, along with periods of emotional numbness, or avoidance of anything which might trigger those reactions. They may feel anxious or agitated for long periods of time, in a state of hyper vigilance to situations which are perceived as being potentially threatening. The sooner a person is able to get help, the sooner they can begin to recover. Learning how to manage traumatic responses to everyday life events is key. With the right kind of help, you can get your life back on track.
Our counsellors and psychologists at Likeminds Clinic are experienced mental health professionals who work with anxiety, stress, and trauma. If you’d like to request an appointment, follow the prompts on the main menu above.