Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
We aim to help individuals, families and communities that
have been impacted by trauma, adversity, and loss to
re-establish a sense of safety and predictability in the
What can cause Post-traumatic Stress Disorder?
Anyone who has experienced trauma through life threatening situations or serious injury that lead to feelings of intense fear, helplessness or horror. They include:
- Physical or sexual assault
- A motor vehicle accident
- Work place harassment
- An industrial accident
- Bush fire or flood
- War experiences
Persistent symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder include:
- Anxiety levels raised – in situations where the person may feel at risk or in any situation that reminds them of the incident.
- Intrusive thoughts and flashbacks
- Panic attacks may occur.
- Vulnerability levels raised – even in one’s home, as most people loose their trust and confidence in people
- Suspicion increases – victims are suspicious of most people with whom they come in contact.
- Sleep Disturbances – reminiscent nightmares are common
- Concentration level drop – some victims are unable to work
- Irritability – inconsequential incidents may take on huge proportions.
- Isolation – victims may withdraw from social contact believing no one else understands their situation.
- Physical symptoms – fatigue, headaches and/or GI disturbance
- Low self esteem and Relationship problems
Other Responses to Trauma
Depression is also a response to trauma. Over time, perhaps after the initial anxieties have subsided, there can exist a numbness or lack of feeling that can lead to symptoms of depression.
Even if the full range of symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, are not experienced, it is still reasonable to seek treatment to help adjusting to life events.
Treatment for Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
The National Health and Medical Research Council treatment guidelines state that the recommended first line treatment is trauma-focused therapy. Clinical research shows a high level of effectiveness in the reduction of anxiety following this treatment.
Whilst debriefing – onsite counselling provided very soon after an incident, may not be beneficial, best practice guidelines state that early support and effective treatment in a secure situation is recommended.
We provide trauma counselling according to best practice guidelines.
Clinical psychologist Margaret Mitchell takes a meta-cognitive therapy approach.
John Gwiazdzinski has a particular interest in working with members of the armed forces.