Trauma responses can last for weeks or months before people begin to feel normal again. Most people report feeling better within three months of a traumatic event, but if the problems worsen or last more than a month, the person may have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Recovering from a traumatic event can take time and it may take a while for you to accept what has happened or to learn to live with it. If someone has died or you have lost something important to you, you may also have to grieve.
Try not to pressure yourself to feel better right away; trauma symptoms usually last from a few days to a few months, and gradually disappear as the disturbing event is processed. However, even when you're feeling better, you may occasionally be worried about painful memories or emotions, especially in response to triggers such as an anniversary of the event or something that reminds you of the trauma. Everyone's response to trauma is different, so be patient with the pace of recovery. Overcoming trauma can be scary, painful, and potentially re-traumatizing, so it's best to do this healing work with the help of an experienced trauma specialist. If you live alone, you may want to see if you can move in with your family or a close friend after a traumatic event.
If you experienced the traumatic event as part of your job, your workplace may have support systems to help you. It's generally not helpful to seek professional mental health support for the first month after a traumatic event, unless your primary care doctor recommends it because your symptoms are so severe. There is intense debate in the field of traumatic stress about whether it is necessary to review traumatic memories to heal or if, in fact, it can be harmful. After experiencing a traumatic event, it can be tempting to see or read a lot of things about it on social media or in the news. Recovery does not necessarily mean the total absence of post-traumatic effects; rather, it is the ability to live in the present without being overwhelmed by the thoughts and feelings of the past. Anyone can experience traumatic events, but they are more likely to be traumatized by an event if they are already under a heavy burden of stress, have recently suffered a series of losses, or have been traumatized in the past - especially if the previous trauma occurred in childhood. If the symptoms of your psychological trauma don't go away or if they get worse and you realize that you can't overcome the event for a long period of time, you may have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Around a third of adults in England report experiencing at least one traumatic event in their lifetime. However, even if your trauma occurred many years ago, there are steps you can take to overcome pain, learn to trust and connect with others again, and regain your sense of emotional balance. During the first few months after a traumatic event, pay attention to how you feel over time. Most people who experience a traumatic event find that the negative effects go away over time. If your difficulties persist and your primary care doctor recommends it because your symptoms are so severe, they may refer you to a professional who specializes in helping people cope with trauma.
EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing) incorporates elements of cognitive-behavioral therapy with eye movements or other forms of rhythmic stimulation from left to right that can “unfreeze traumatic memories”.