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The Role of Avoidance in Trauma

The Role of Avoidance in Trauma

Traumatic events are emotionally and psychologically jarring, with lasting adverse effects. Therefore, it is not surprising that trauma victims find ways to cope with the horrendous experience they lived through. One of the harmful coping mechanisms they develop is avoidance. 

Avoidance is one of the symptoms of chronic post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). This article examines the role of avoidance in trauma and how it can be detrimental. If you or a loved one exhibit avoidance symptoms after a traumatic experience, don’t waste time getting the help you need. 

What Is the Role of Avoidance in Trauma, and Is It Detrimental?

Generally, people avoid thoughts and things that remind them of a traumatic experience. This makes avoidance one of the core symptoms needed for a PTSD diagnosis. Avoidance could be emotional (e.g., shutting down feelings of sadness) or physical (e.g., avoiding places that remind you of the traumatic event).

Using avoidance as a coping mechanism to deal with trauma may last for a while; however, it is not a long-term fix. As a result, it is detrimental to your recovery. This is more so if you encourage yourself with words like ‘time heals all wounds.’

Time won’t make you better, and similar events will trigger your PTSD. As a result, you will be unable to move on with your life and find yourself in a rut. Therefore, instead of avoiding the emotions or physical activities associated with your trauma, you must process and confront them head-on. 

How to Deal With Avoidance

You must understand that avoidance is not your friend but an enemy that will keep you from living your best life. Figure out what emotions and events you try to avoid, and face them one after the other. Also, don’t avoid conversations that trigger the memory of the traumatic experience. 

Identify the different ways you use to avoid facing your trauma and systematically eliminate them. If you stopped going out because of the traumatic experience, now is the time to leave your comfort zone. Finally, seek help from a certified and experienced therapist who will help you confront and overcome your fears. 

At Ketamine & Wellness Clinic of South Florida, we can help you identify the emotions and events you avoid and effectively overcome them. We offer ketamine for PTSD, combining infusions with counseling to help to eliminate symptoms, including avoidance.