Post-Traumatic Stress

Counselling & psychotherapy

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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that can develop after exposure to a traumatic event such as threatened death, serious injury, sexual violence, warfare, or other threats on a person’s life. The condition may develop not only after directly experiencing the trauma.

Symptoms

Typical symptoms may include recurrent thoughts, memories and dreams of the traumatic events, attempts to avoid trauma-related cues, changes in behaviour, and problems in concentration and sleep. Left untreated PTSD can seriously impact on the individuals’ life including relationships with family and friends. Sadly, many people turn to drugs or alcohol as a way of coping.

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Diagnosis

The diagnostic process will usually involve two consultations, one with a mental health care specialist (psychologist or psychiatrist), who will ask you about your symptoms, your thoughts, feelings and behaviour patterns, followed by a series of individualised neuropsychological assessments performed by a neuropsychologist. A physical examination, laboratory tests and imaging scans are sometimes necessary to rule out other physical problems that could cause your symptoms.

In cases where a diagnosis of a disease has been established, our multidisciplinary team will do everything humanly possible to treat symptoms and prevent them from progressing further, involving as many specialists as required, hence improving the quality of life, the emotional health and the well-being of each individual.

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Risk Assessment & Prevention

Risk assessments, prevention strategies and tools are used as it is far more efficient to prevent a disease from developing rather than try to treat it once it has progressed. However, in cases where a diagnosis of a disease has been established, our multidisciplinary team will ensure to its utmost ability in treating the symptoms and prevent them from progressing further, hence improving the quality of life, the emotional health and the well-being of each individual.

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Treatment

Our trauma treatment at Dementech uses a holistic approach and helps patients re-process the trauma so that memories which are being re-experienced are processed into narrative, explicit memory rather than implicit and somatic memory. Furthermore, talking therapies such as psychotherapy, cognitive behavioural therapy and family therapy can help the individual come to terms with the traumatic event, develop coping mechanisms and deal with the aftermath of the event. Drug treatments for PTSD are not to be used as a routine first-line treatment but can be considered under specific circumstances.

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