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Can Recovery Reverse Trauma?

There have been a lot of studies that show a scan of a traumatized brain versus a brain that has never experienced trauma and they look significantly different. An impala in Africa, when it is attacked by a lion, plays dead until the lion walks away. After the lion leaves, the impala lays there for a while and then starts viciously shaking. It violently shakes itself and then it gets up and walks away. Animals have learned how to deal with all of the energy that comes up when they go into survival mode, but humans haven’t. It is reasonable to think that this is because humans are frightened of the intensity of the survival energy, but because we don’t deal with it, it ends up getting stored in our body. Most other mental disorders such as depression and anxiety can go away on their own, but Trauma is one of the very few mental disorders that does not go away on its own, unless it is addressed, because it is stored in the body.

Neuroplasticity: the Ability to Adapt

Yes, the nervous system of a human being can reverse the effects of trauma internally through the process of recovery. Neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to adapt and heal, which can be used in a safe, therapeutic environment to process traumatic events, as long as an individual is willing to address their trauma.

We have worked with countless numbers of human beings at Buckeye Recovery to help them recover from their traumatic experiences. In the field of addiction and mental health, it is rare to come across a human being who has not experienced some type of traumatic event, either first-hand or second-hand. Many people mistakenly think that trauma can only happen to those who experienced overtly obvious traumatic incidents. Just because someone did not get abused physically does not mean that they didn’t experience trauma. Trauma sometimes could be things that should have happened through the lifespan development of a person that never happened.

Types of Trauma

Trauma can be broadly classified into two types.

Single Incident Trauma : If a person has never experienced a traumatic event in their life and they get into a car accident and it’s very distressing for them, treating that trauma is generally going to be a little bit quicker than treating complex trauma for someone who has grown up in a home with abuse, such as substance abuse or sexual abuse.

Complex Trauma : For an individual who has experienced trauma throughout their lifespan development and demonstrates symptoms of complex trauma, they are typically diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Timeframe to Overcome Trauma Symptoms

In the case of complex post-traumatic disorder, it is very difficult to say that a person is going to heal in 30, 60, or 90 days. A person who is admitted into recovery does not necessarily overcome trauma just because they go through the recovery process. For someone who experienced a single incident trauma, they may be able to move through it in 3 – 5 sessions, however for someone with a complex PTSD, it can take several months, even a couple of years. Therefore, while there isn’t a specific timeframe for recovery, they can expect that their symptoms and risks would be diminished, or even removed, and after going through recovery.

If you are suffering from any kind of trauma, reach out for help:

Today is going to be the best day of your life.

Kelsey Gearhart

Director of Business Development

Kelsey carries multiple years of experience working in the substance abuse and mental health treatment field. Her passion for this field comes from her personally knowing recovery from addiction.

Prior to Buckeye she held titles of Recovery Coach, Operations Director, and Admissions Director. Kelsey was brought on at Buckeye Recovery as the Director of Business Development. She has a passion for ensuring every individual gets the help that they need, and does so by developing relationships with other providers.

Kelsey also oversees our women’s sober living environments – The Chadwick House for Women. She is committed to creating a safe, nurturing, and conducive environment for all women that walk through the doors of Chadwick.