Definition of Trauma:

Derived from the Greek word for “wound”, trauma was traditionally defined as a short-term situational disturbance and that the psychological distress would wane when stressor subsided.

However, as the research grew, the definition of trauma has transformed and have become considerably more inclusive. Experiences with natural disasters, interpersonal violence, fires, accidents, sexual violation/harassment, abuse, emergency worker exposure, experience death of loved one are just to name a few.

Long standing neglect from formative attachment relationships could also result in complex trauma, which causes oneself to react with symptoms of emotional or physical avoidance, and/or increased arousal, and feelings of helplessness, fear or horror.


Types of Trauma:

  1. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
  2. Acute Stress Disorder
  3. Adjustment Disorders

Signs and Symptoms:

  • Responses may include feeling intense fear, helplessness or horror.
  • Experiencing recurrent and intrusive distressing recollections of the traumatic event.
  • Intense psychological distress when exposed to a cue that resembles the traumatic event
  • Persistent avoidance of stimuli associated with traumatic experiences, and numbing responses (avoid thoughts, feelings, activities, places associated with the trauma). Unable to recall aspects of the trauma, feeling detached from the traumatic experience.
  • Increased arousal – sleeping disturbances, irritability, difficulty concentrating,
  • Hypervigilance & startled responses.


How Do We Approach Trauma?

At EMCC, we adopt a strength-based approach to help individuals unleash their fullest potential and to help develop competencies that can move individuals towards a satisfying and meaningful life. Individuals are assured that trauma-sensitive approaches are used to bring about care for our clients. If you believe that you or your loved one is suffering from the symptoms of trauma, speaking to a therapist to find ways to manage and cope with the experience, can help.

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