Boynton Beach PTSD Counseling

ptsd counseling

PTSD or Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, is a serious and potentially debilitating condition that can occur in people who have experienced or witnessed a natural disaster, serious accident, terrorist incident, sudden death of a loved one, war, violent personal assault such as rape, or other life-threatening traumatic events.

For Veteran PTSD go to Veteran PTSD Treatment

PTSD SYMPTOMS

Many people who go through traumatic events have difficulty adjusting and coping for a temporary period of time. In these cases, it’s not likely that they’re suffering from PTSD. With time and good self-care, they usually get better. However, if the symptoms worsen or last for months or even years and interfere with your functioning, you may have developed PTSD from your trauma.

It’s common for PTSD symptoms to emerge soon after the traumatic event. But for some people, they may not experience PTSD symptoms until months or years after the trauma. Symptoms may come and go over many years. It’s important to keep track of your symptoms and talk to someone you trust or seek therapy and PTSD treatment. 

Counseling is advised for individuals experiencing the following PTSD symptoms:

  • Behavioral: agitation, irritability, hostility, hypervigilance, self-destructive behavior, or social isolation
  • Mood: inability to feel pleasure, guilt, or loneliness
  • Psychological: flashback, fear, severe anxiety, or mistrust
  • Sleep: insomnia or nightmares
  • Also common: emotional detachment or unwanted thoughts

How PTSD Treatment and Counseling Can Help

When an individual is experiencing PTSD, they will typically try to avoid any thoughts, emotions, and discussions related to their traumatic event. In certain cases, some may even develop amnesia and completely block out details that are associated with the trauma. However, when it comes to PTSD, the effects of the trauma never fully go away. Those with PTSD might relive the traumatic event through intrusive flashbacks and nightmares. At Gateway Counseling Center, we teach that PTSD knows no discrimination, leaving men, women, and children of all ethnicities, heritages, and backgrounds susceptible to developing PTSD. This is why it’s important to seek PTSD therapy and treatment if you’ve been exposed to a traumatic event and you’re dealing with chronic PTSD symptoms.

It’s also common for those with PTSD to turn to drugs and alcohol in attempts to relieve pain, stress, anxiety, or halt disturbing thoughts brought on by PTSD. It’s crucial to remember that substance abuse prolongs PTSD symptoms, can increase anxiety and stress, and even emphasize disturbing thoughts related to the trauma. In these cases when substance abuse is involved with PTSD, our mental health counselors will address the substance abuse before the trauma. This is because it’s important for those who have PTSD to feel healthy both physically and mentally throughout their PTSD treatment. Once substance abuse issues are resolved, the PTSD treatment, therapy, and healing process can begin. 

If you would like to set up an appointment for PTSD Counseling fill out our contact form and we will get back to you shortly.

John D. Hawkins Jr., M.S., C.A.P., L.M.H.C.

LEARN MORE ABOUT PTSD TREATMENT WITH GATEWAY COUNSELING CENTER

If you’ve faced a traumatic event at any point in your life and you believe you’re experiencing PTSD symptoms, it’s important to seek help as soon as possible. Our compassionate mental health professionals at Gateway Counseling Center are experienced in various PTSD treatment methods and therapies and can help you learn to manage PTSD stressors and symptoms. Don’t wait to treat posttraumatic stress disorder. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment in our office or online.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT PTSD AND PTSD TREATMENT 

At Gateway Counseling center, we want all of our clients to have the information and resources they need. We understand that mental health counseling terminology, diagnoses, methods, and treatments can sometimes seem confusing or complex. Our mental health professionals are here to answer all of your questions and concerns. In addition, you can reference this list of frequently asked questions and answers about PTSD, PTSD treatment and therapy, PTSD symptoms, and much more.

Does counseling, therapy, or treatment help someone with PTSD?

Yes — counseling, therapy, and treatment can help someone with PTSD. Unfortunately, many of those suffering from PTSD will avoid many forms of counseling and treatment. Traumatic events affect people in various ways and avoiding a discussion of the details related to the trauma are common reactions. This type of avoidance can be detrimental to someone with PTSD symptoms. Social isolation and avoidance can often make PTSD symptoms worse. While it’s natural to want to escape the memories of the trauma, avoiding it altogether is never the answer.  If you believe that you or someone you know has developed PTSD from a traumatic event, whether it be a natural disaster, assault, car accident, or any other type of trauma, it’s important to seek out help. Counseling and PTSD treatment can provide the tools, mental clarity, and safe emotional space to process the trauma and work towards healing. If you think you’re ready to talk to someone about PTSD treatment and our counseling methods, contact Gateway Counseling Center today.

Who can provide PTSD therapy or PTSD treatment?

We strongly recommend working with a certified and licensed mental health counselor or therapist when seeking PTSD therapy or PTSD treatment. We understand that it might feel awkward or uncomfortable speaking to a stranger when it comes to discussing a traumatic event. However, we can’t stress enough how important it is to turn to the professional mental health community for PTSD treatment. While talking to friends or family members about the trauma can be helpful and comforting in certain situations, when it comes to treatment, you want to work with a licensed mental health professional. Our mental health counselors at Gateway Counseling Center have studied and researched PTSD symptoms and treatments and have identified effective methods that can help. We encourage those with PTSD to remain connected with their communities, support systems, friends, and family. However, when it comes to PTSD treatment, contact a mental health professional.

Is PTSD a serious mental illness?

The American Psychiatric Association defines Posttraumatic Stress Disorder as a psychiatric disorder and PTSD is also included in the newest version of the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) under Trauma- and Stressor-Related Disorders. While PTSD is considered a mental illness, the severity of PTSD will vary according to each individual and the trauma they witnessed or experienced.

Even though PTSD is defined as a mental health illness and a psychiatric disorder amongst the psychological and psychiatric communities, you might be sitting right next to someone with PTSD and have no idea that they’ve been diagnosed. Society often places a stigma on mental health illnesses and psychiatric disorders. This is one of the reasons why people suffering from PTSD or any other mental health disorder might avoid treatment or counseling. They might have grown up in a household where mental health issues like depression, anxiety, or stress are considered weaknesses. Oftentimes people are told to “get over it” or “man-up” when it comes to dealing with their mental health issues. It’s important for all of us to actively change the culture and toxic views around mental health. Mental health should be viewed similarly to physical health. When you have a fever, you go and see a medical doctor. When you’re experiencing PTSD symptoms, you should contact a therapist or mental health counselor for help.

If you’ve avoided therapy because you’re fearful of a diagnosis or you’re hesitant to receive treatment, remember that taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of your physical health. Contact Gateway Counseling Center in Boynton Beach today and schedule an appointment to speak with one of our trusted and experienced mental health counselors.

What are the common PTSD symptoms?

Before we list the common PTSD signs and symptoms, it’s important to remember that PTSD symptoms can appear at any time. When someone experiences a traumatic event, PTSD symptoms can emerge immediately, or days, weeks, or even years after the trauma. Those who begin to see symptoms after a long period of time, such as years, after the traumatic event are the most vulnerable to leaving PTSD untreated. They might feel as though they should have “gotten over it” after a certain amount of time. This is why it’s crucial to be aware of how long it sometimes takes PTSD symptoms to appear. Regardless of when your traumatic event took place, you can always turn to a mental health counselor for PTSD treatment and therapy.

The ADAA (Anxiety and Depression Association of America) lists the following as common symptoms and signs of PTSD:

  • Re-experiencing the trauma through intrusive distressing recollections of the event, flashbacks, and nightmares.
  • Emotional numbness and avoidance of places, people, and activities that are reminders of the trauma.
  • Increased arousal such as difficulty sleeping and concentrating, feeling jumpy, and being easily irritated and angered.
  • Inability to remember an important aspect of the traumatic events (not due to head injury, alcohol, or drugs).
  • Persistent and exaggerated negative beliefs or expectations about oneself, others, or the world (e.g., “I am bad,” “No one can be trusted,” “The world is completely dangerous”). 
  • Persistent, distorted blame of self or others about the cause or consequences of the traumatic events.
  • Persistent fear, horror, anger, guilt, or shame.
  • Markedly diminished interest or participation in significant activities.
  • Feelings of detachment or estrangement from others.
  • Persistent inability to experience positive emotions.
  • Irritable or aggressive behavior
  • Reckless or self-destructive behavior
  • Hypervigilance
  • Exaggerated startle response
  • Problems with concentration
  • Difficulty falling or staying asleep or restless sleep

If you experience any of the above PTSD symptoms for longer than a month, contact a mental health counselor right away. At Gateway Counseling Center, we offer help both in-person and online. Call us today to schedule an appointment.

Can you have trauma symptoms without experiencing trauma?

While most people diagnosed with PTSD do experience a specific traumatic event, not everyone with PTSD develops symptoms due to one particular trauma. For instance, PTSD has been diagnosed in children who may live in households with high levels of violence and conflict. The consistent lack of comfort or care can produce feelings of fear, anxiety, and stress which can lead to a PTSD diagnosis. While it may not be a result of one specific traumatic event, PTSD symptoms can still emerge. If you believe you’re experiencing PTSD symptoms, but you never witnessed or experienced a traumatic event, you may still be diagnosed with PTSD. Contact Gateway Counseling Center today to learn more.

How long does it take to heal from PTSD?

The healing process for someone with PTSD can vary. It will depend on a number of different factors such as the severity of the symptoms, the source of the trauma, the commitment to treatment and counseling, their support system, and if substance abuse is involved. The healing process is gradual and will not happen overnight. It’s also important to take into consideration that “healing” can be subjective and the recovery process can mean different things to different people. The most important thing to remember is that PTSD isn’t considered a condition that is “cured.” At Gateway Counseling Center, our goal is to provide the tools a person needs to manage and cope with their PTSD so they can enjoy daily activities, function at high-levels, have successful careers, build relationships, and live healthy and fulfilling lives.

What happens if PTSD is left untreated?

Since many of those suffering from PTSD avoid seeking help and support, it’s unfortunately quite common for PTSD to be left untreated. The consequences of leaving PTSD untreated can be dangerous and severe. When people suffer from heightened levels of stress and anxiety for extended periods of time, it can cause a lot of physical damage to the brain and body. Leaving PTSD untreated isn’t only physically harmful, but it can also be detrimental to a person’s mental health and overall well-being. Those who don’t seek help for PTSD are often left with a lot of challenges in almost every area of their life. This is why it’s so important to address PTSD symptoms and receive the treatment an individual needs after witnessing or experiencing a traumatic event. 

If you or someone you know has experienced a traumatic event and has developed symptoms of PTSD, it’s important to talk to a mental health professional, get a proper diagnosis, and begin treatment and counseling. The mental health professionals at Gateway Counseling Center in Boynton Beach are here to provide the support and guidance you need to learn to cope with your PTSD symptoms and begin the recovery process. 

Boynton Beach Counseling Center
Gateway Counseling Center
1034 Gateway Blvd. #104
Boynton Beach, FL 33426
Phone: (561) 468-6464
Phone: (561) 678-0036

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