How To Cope With PTSD

October 1, 2022

Coping with PTSD can be difficult, especially when traumatic symptoms make your day-to-day life difficult. Luckily, there are things you can do to make coping with PTSD easier. Here are some ways you can potentially reduce bothersome PTSD symptoms.

Regain focus through physical activity

Physical activity is not only good for your body, but it’s good for your mind too. Many people find that exercise can help reduce their stress levels and focus on something other than the causes of stress. For those with PTSD, exercise can offer physical relief and boost positive emotions. Participating in physical activity can make coping with your symptoms easier, allowing you to strengthen both your mind and body.

Art therapy

Led by mental health specialists trained to help those who have suffered through traumatic situations, art therapy is a newer form of therapy that aims to allow patients to express themselves and externalize their emotions. Art Therapy can help those with PTSD learn to cope with distressing memories using artistic expressions like painting or creating a sculpture. Using art can help you express your feelings when words aren’t enough. 

Pets for PTSD

One strategy that has been effective for disruptive symptoms of PTSD in some people is using a therapy pet. These pets are service animals trained to recognize and prevent or interrupt the symptoms of PTSD, such as panic attacks. Several studies have shown the effectiveness of trained therapy pets, such as dogs, for PTSD, in reducing anxiety, depression, and even nightmares.

If a therapy dog or other pet sounds like it may be helpful for you, you’ll want to discuss this with a licensed therapist and research information on what type of pet is right for you and what types of services it will need to be trained to provide to help you best.

Social support

Having support from those around you can significantly impact your well-being and help you overcome the negative effects of a traumatic event. It is important to have someone you can turn to and discuss your experiences with. Having proper social support can help you feel less alone and work through your emotions during difficult times. 

In addition to having close relationships you can rely on, it can also be helpful to have people around you who have experienced similar situations. Joining a support group can help you feel validated and understood. If you choose this route, find a support group for those with PTSD led by a mental health professional.

Expressive writing

For some people, journaling can be a great way to express your feelings and share your experiences in a safe space. For those with PTSD, expressive writing can greatly improve coping skills, increase post-traumatic growth, and reduce PTSD symptoms, tension, and difficult emotions. You can journal at a specific time of day, such as when you first wake up, as part of your nightly routine, or throughout the day whenever you feel like jotting down your thoughts. Allow yourself to be open when journaling. Don’t aim for a specific number of pages or a certain amount of time; just do whatever feels right for you. If you struggle with insomnia or increased PTSD symptoms at night, consider keeping your journal by your bed to make it easier to write down your thoughts when you’re struggling with sleep.

Ketamine treatment

When all other options fail to manage your PTSD symptoms, you can often feel distressed and helpless. Alternative treatments like ketamine therapy can help to treat treatment-resistant depression, anxiety, and PTSD. The experiential (or “psychedelic”) element of a ketamine journey helps patients reframe their paradigm of themselves concerning their trauma. The goal is to reset cognitive paradigms so that, on a subconscious level, your trauma no longer defines who you are.

Ketamine treatment for PTSD symptoms

“Why did that happen to me?” This is the question that echoes in the minds of many trauma survivors. However, the question of “why” highlights one of the fundamental ways ketamine treats PTSD. Often there is nothing that can be articulated to answer this existential question on a subconscious level. If words could explain it, then talk therapy would have already worked. If this describes how you feel about your PTSD symptoms, ketamine treatment may be right for you.

If you’re interested in seeing if ketamine treatment is right for managing your PTSD symptoms, Klarisana is here to help. At Klarisana, we believe depression and PTSD lock people into a feedback loop of dark and negative thoughts, like being forced to listen to a radio station that you hate. The goal should not solely be to turn down the volume of that station; it should be to “change the channel.”

To see if ketamine therapy is right for you, book an appointment now and let our experts see how we can help you.

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