Trauma Resolution: Stress, Trauma, and Addiction
Unresolved trauma and severe stress can feel like an impossible obstacle when trying to recover from drug or alcohol addiction. But Palm Partners Recovery Center works with you to find a way to overcome through Trauma Resolution.
Trauma can lead to unhealthy coping mechanisms, including self-medicating through drugs or alcohol. Some people turn to substances as a means of escape. It can be the product of prolonged exposure to devastating circumstances, or the result of a single catastrophic moment. Some people who seek help with addiction even suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
According to PTSD United
- 70% of adults (approximately 223.4 million people) in the US have experienced some type of traumatic event at least once in their lives.
- Up to 20% of these people go on to develop PTSD.
- Approximately 44.7 million people today either have struggled or are struggling with PTSD.
Many define a traumatic experience as any unusual or unexpected experience or event that occurs, such as:
- Recurring physical and/or emotional abuse
- Loss of a loved one
- Situations where a person has feared for their life or the life of another
- Simply living in prolonged stressful environment
- Domestic violence
One important thing to remember is trauma is highly individualized, which means trauma resolution should be as well. A person who has experienced trauma can experience such reactions as:
- Intrusive recollections of the event
- Recurring nightmares
- Dissociative reactions
- Physical reactivity to related situation
When a person experiences trauma, deep parts of the mind continue to respond to it, even long after the experience has passed. Feelings of intense anxiety, depression and irritability can all be indications of a much deeper issue.
The Connection Between Trauma and Addiction
The risk of substance abuse and developing an addiction is drastically increased for trauma survivors. For instance, studies show that victims of sexual assault are more likely to use drugs than the general public. That includes being:
- 3.4 times more likely to use marijuana
- 6 times more likely to use cocaine
- 10 times more likely to use other major drugs
Research published in the Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research indicates there is an 8.4% of abuse rates among the general population. However, when researchers looked at alcoholics, they found:
- 24% of men with alcohol use disorder had experience trauma
- 33% of women with alcohol use disorder had experienced trauma
The same research shows that the rate of sexual abuse in the general population is about 6%, yet with alcoholics it rises dramatically for men and especially women:
- 12% for men with alcohol use disorder
- 49% for women with alcohol use disorder
Many experts believe that unresolved trauma is at the heart of many cases of substance use disorder. Sometimes, trauma is even a result of growing up in a home with a parent struggling with alcohol or drug addiction. This creates a viscous cycle of emotional damage, abuse and substance use to self-medicate that can either diminish the quality or life, or eventually turn fatal.
How Trauma Resolution Therapy Can Help
Trauma Resolution Therapy is a truly remarkable and life changing process that can quickly and painlessly eliminate some of the negative effects of trauma. It is very client centered, non-intrusive therapy that allows individuals to live a normal life without being blocked by the devastating events of their past. When individuals experience trauma, deep parts of the mind continue to respond to that trauma long after the event itself is long over with. These repressed feelings hold influence over their thinking, emotions, relationships, behavior, and health. Traumatic experiences include things as normal as receiving a poor grade in school to more dramatic occurrences as serious as an assault and rape.
Palm Partners Recovery Center believes that drug and alcohol abuse can become another symptom of trying to cope with unresolved trauma. Trauma survivors often seek relief from the extreme stress and pain they’ve attached to the past through self-medicating with substances. Our program offers opportunities to address these issues with different forms of therapy. We work with our clients to seek an empowering resolution that can eliminate self-destructive behaviors and promote healthier coping skills and a high quality of life. Some of the unique treatment options for trauma resolution therapy at Palm Partners include:
- Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
- Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
- Stress Reduction
- Mindfulness Training
Each one of these modalities is a proven method of reducing stress and creating positive emotional shifts for individual’s suffering from severe trauma.