Symptoms, psychotherapy ptsd

Symptoms of Unresolved Trauma and Stress

Unresolved trauma can manifest in a variety of problems and symptoms in your life.  While these vary from one individual to the next, they may include:

Psychological Symptoms

• Startled response

• Night terrors or nightmares

• Flashbacks

• Panic attacks

• Sleep problems

• Deep feelings of shame

• Emotional numbness / Difficulty showing emotion / Emotional overreaction

• Anxiety and fear / Excessive worry

• Feelings of worthlessness

• Feelings of hopelessness

• Low stress tolerance

• Feeling isolated or detached

• Hypervigilance

• Perfectionism

• Obsessive fears

• Compulsive behaviors

• Shame

• Guilt (especially survivor guilt)

• Temper tantrums in children

• Mood swings

• Apathy

• Crying spells

• Sadness that’s difficult to shake

• Depressed mood

• Irritability

• Anger outbursts / rage

• Addictive behaviors

• Difficulties with concentration

• Promiscuity

• Procrastination

• Perfectionism

• Difficulties making decisions

• Avoidant behavior (particularly with anything related to the trauma)

• Self-harm behavior

• Suicidal thoughts or behaviors

• Impulsivity

• Recklessness

• Attraction to danger

• Feeling easily overwhelmed

• Sense of a foreshortened future

• Feelings of emptiness

• Accident proneness


Somatic and Physiological Symptoms

• Low energy

• Chronic fatigue

• Psychosomatic illness

• Headaches, including migraines

• Muscle tension

• Neck and back pain

• Joint problems

     • Cold sweaty hands

• Low libido and other sexual problems

• Chronic pain

• Allergies

• Asthma and other breathing problems

• Compromised immune functioning

• Weight problems (including being underweight)

• Digestive problems

• Infertility

• Menstrual problems


Disorders and Conditions That Can Benefit From Somatic Experiencing

Somatic Experiencing can be very beneficial for any condition or disorder that stems from trauma.  These include (but aren’t limited to):

• PTSD

• Depression

• Specific phobias

• Social phobia

• Panic disorder, with or without agoraphobia

• Generalized anxiety disorder

• Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

• Borderline Personality Disorder

• ADHD / ADD

• Childhood trauma

• Grief and loss

• Sleep disorders

• Chronic fatigue

• Asthma and other types of breathing problems

• Digestive problems, such as IBS

• Muscle tension