When post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) comes up in conversation, most people automatically think of military veterans, but this debilitating condition is certainly not limited to soldiers; anybody who has experienced a large shock of any kind can find themselves struggling to handle the emotional fall-out.
Five subtypes of PTSD have been devised in order to determine the severity and characteristics of the condition. There are: uncomplicated PTSD, comorbid PTSD and complex PTSD, normal stress response, and acute stress disorder.
One of the main characteristics of PTSD is sleep disturbances and flashbacks to the event. The person finds themselves reliving the trauma repeatedly, so finds it very difficult to overcome. Some of the other symptoms of PTSD are:
· Depression and severe anxiety (a sense of dread)
· Concentration problems
· Loss of interest in previously engaging activities
· Newfound difficulty in relating to friends and family (sufferers can become emotionally ‘distant’)
The symptoms of PTSD can be self-perpetuating; in other words, they can actually lead the person further into the problem, because the symptoms lead to sufferers feeling depressed and emotionally disconnected from others.
The result is often that the sufferer moves further and further away from the idea of talking about the trauma, thus it goes unhealed and retains a steely grip over the person’s life. For this reason, it is imperative to try to manage the trauma at an early stage.
It is very common that the sufferer has no desire to speak about the trauma itself. The question is, do they really need to - and will it do more harm than good? The sufferer is usually more at ease discussing the PTSD symptoms themselves. They often feel that putting it into words may make it much more real, taking them back to the event in an emotionally overwhelming way.
There are many ways to heal
As with most conditions, both physical and psychological, there is not one set way to heal. Everybody has their own history, temperament, vulnerabilities and so on, so what works well for one person may be totally ineffective on another.
If somebody is not improving from (or is completely incapable of) talking about their trauma, this is not the end of the road for them. The key is in determining what works for each individual and monitoring the results carefully and honestly. It has been known that people recover in timescales they had previously thought impossible.
Forcing somebody to do something that overwhelms them is not going to be successful. The interesting thing is that often once the sufferer has fully healed, they find themselves fully able to discuss the details of the trauma after all.
Healing can continue long after treatment has finished, with the patient having developed the confidence to explore their comfort zones around the subject more and more as time goes on.
Plant medicines can help
PTSD sufferers may very well need help, but they must still honour their own healing preferences and do what feels right for them. There are many routes to recovering from PTSD, and plant medicines are one powerful tool. For instance, huachuma has been used for centuries in the Andes and is loved for its ability to heal all ‘spiritual’ ailments in one session.
Serious mental traumas like PTSD can be overcome with gradual use of medicinal plants, if one session is not enough. The plants used at Magnetic Movement will not necessarily plunge you back into your own memories in order to heal you, which is what makes them so beneficial. The healing is done at the cellular level, repairing DNA and gently showing you different ways of perceiving and releasing emotions.