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Recovery and Treatment PTSD

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You probably want to recover and get rid of the distressing PTSD symptoms as quickly as possible. PTSD can be cured through proper treatment? This article outlines how PTSD is treated. Read about recovering from post-traumatic stress disorder, tips and the possible treatments.

Can PTSD Be Cured?

With the right treatment, it’s definitely possible to recover from the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. There are several treatment options available. You’ll always be involved in the development of your treatment and it will be tailored to your personal situation. Additionally, there are a number of things that you can do for yourself that will contribute to your recovery.

 

How is PTSD treated?

Treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder won’t look the same for everybody. There are a variety of different treatments, therapies, and techniques available. If you’re having therapy for PTSD, your psychologist will discuss with you what the best treatment is for your personal situation. 

Treatment for PTSD usually consists of one (or a combination of several) of the following techniques:

 

1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is often used to treat PTSD. It is a form of therapy where you learn to look at your problems or memories through a new lens. You learn to think differently about the event that happened, changing the way you feel about the situation. There are various forms of cognitive behavioral therapy:

  • Imagery rescripting
    Imagery rescripting is a method of treatment in which your psychologist helps you to go back in your mind to the moment of trauma. By imagining a different outcome to the event (the way you wish things had turned out) you can change the memory.
  • Exposure therapy
    In exposure therapy, your psychologist will keep asking you questions about your distressing memories. Having to tell the story over and over again, maybe even writing it down in detail, will make you feel less afraid of it. As a result, this will change the way you think about it.

 

2. EMDR 

The goal of EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is to diminish the emotional charge associated with a memory.

During the treatment, you think about the distressing event. The event and trauma are retrieved from your long-term memory and transferred to your working memory. Meanwhile, the psychologist moves their fingers up and down in front of your eyes. The psychologist may also use tapping or auditory signals.

You follow the movement with your eyes while thinking about the memory. Since your working memory has to process a lot simultaneously, the image of the memory fades, and consequently, the emotional charge associated with the memory also diminishes.

EMDR is considered an effective treatment for PTSD and is recommended by various national and international guidelines, including WHO. It can help reduce symptoms such as flashbacks, nightmares, and avoidance behavior.

 

What does treatment look like?

The treatment of PTSD begins with establishing that you have PTSD. Together with a psychologist, you will map out your symptoms, circumstances, and personal style. This forms the basis for the treatment plan you will follow.

Some people find it exciting or scary to go into therapy for PTSD, partly because of the fear of reliving difficult moments when discussing them with the psychologist.

Remember that, ultimately, therapy will actually make you feel less anxious and less likely to engage in avoidant behaviors. If you want to recover from PTSD, it’s important to get the right treatment.

Treating PTSD typically takes between 2 to 25 weeks.

 

How can you improve PTSD recovery?

  • Acknowledge your symptoms and feelings
    Take them seriously. It may help to write about your PTSD symptoms, problems and fears. Writing helps you to figure out what’s going on inside your head. You can put your thoughts and feelings into words. That’s always a relief.
  • Talk about your feelings
    Find someone close to you who you can trust; somebody you feel safe with, who is willing to listen to you. Talking about what happened and all your feelings related to it is really helpful.
  • Maintain a regular routine
    Structure and routine are an important part of getting through the day. 
  • Do relaxation exercises
    When you’re feeling tense and anxious, it helps to do relaxation exercises. This could be in the form of breathing exercises or meditation.
  • Find a distraction
    Don’t let yourself withdraw and stay inside all day. Go for a nature hike; bake or cook something tasty; do the things you loved to do before your symptoms developed. You may not really feel like it, but do it anyway. It will help to take your mind off things and provide a burst of positive energy.

 

Relapse

Even after you have recovered from PTSD, the symptoms can sometimes return after a while. During your treatment, you and your psychologist have created a plan for the times when you experience recurring symptoms. This plan outlines the first steps to take to prevent a relapse.

If your symptoms become more severe, you should contact your psychologist again. Sometimes a refresher session can help you get back on track, but re-treatment is also possible.

 

I need help for my PTSD

Be aware that therapy can help reduce fears and prevent avoidance reactions. For recovering from PTSD, it is important to receive proper treatment.

Feel free to get in touch with a psychologist. We are eager to hear your story. Together, we will look for a suitable therapy for PTSD.

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    Do you have questions about treatments? Call us on +31207717996 and we will give you personal advice and help creating a treatment plan.

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    At iPractice we use blended care. This is a combination of online and offline therapy. You’ll have face-to-face conversations with a consulting psychologist and you’ll also have access to an online psychologist in between. This means that you can ask questions and share your thoughts whenever you like.

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    PTSD can be treated with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and/or EMDR. Your treatment will be tailored to you and the PTSD symptoms. With the right treatment you can make a good recovery from PTSD. Click here to learn more about treatments for PTSD.

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    The cost of treatment is reimbursed by most health insurance companies when there is a referral letter from the GP and when the GP can make an official diagnosis according to DSM-5 guidelines.

You can see Nine for mental health issues, such as trauma-related problems and PTSD.
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Psychologists specialized in ptsd

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Silvija Licina

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