Childhood trauma can have a wide range of long-term devastating effects on physical health, depending on the type and severity of the trauma experienced.
How does childhood trauma affect your health?
There have been multiple studies conducted on the long-term effects of childhood trauma. The results have consistently shown that childhood trauma can have a wide range of damaging effects on physical and mental health and social and occupational functioning. Some of these adverse effects include-
- Chronic pain: Childhood trauma is connected to an increased risk of chronic pain in adulthood.
- Cardiovascular disease: Traumatic experiences in childhood have been associated with an increased risk of heart disease and stroke later in life.
- Obesity: Some research suggests that childhood trauma may contribute to an increased risk of obesity.
- Gastrointestinal issues: Childhood trauma has been linked to a higher risk of gastrointestinal problems, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
- Substance abuse: Trauma in childhood has been linked to an increased risk of substance abuse in adulthood.
- Mental health problems: such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD.
- Relationship problems: People who experienced trauma in childhood have difficulty forming and maintaining good relationships.
Additionally, other effects include problems in school (academically and with peers), unemployment and financial difficulties, and involvement in criminal behaviour.
These are just some examples, and the effects of childhood trauma can vary widely from person to person.
Can you heal from childhood trauma?
It is possible to heal with the right support and treatment.
Some of these options are-
- Psychotherapy: Therapy can be a helpful way to process and work through the feelings and experiences associated with trauma. Some standard trauma therapies (all the therapies that I do!) include cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), exposure therapy, and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR).
- Medications: Medication may be used in the short term; however, it is not a long-term solution. It’s important to remember that medication alone is not usually sufficient to treat the underlying cause of the trauma.
- Supportive care: This can include support from loved ones, support groups and peer support.
- Self-care: Engaging in activities that promote physical and emotional well-being, such as exercise, healthy eating, and relaxation techniques such as meditation and yoga, can be helpful in the recovery process.
- Hypnotherapy: is another type of therapy that involves inducing a state of hypnosis to access the unconscious mind and facilitate change. It is used to help people overcome various issues, including trauma. Evidence suggests that hypnotherapy may be effective in treating trauma and related issues, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Hypnotherapy for childhood trauma should only be conducted by a clinically trained professional.
EMDR for childhood trauma
EMDR is often known as the GOLD STANDARD for trauma therapy.
Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a trauma therapy often used to treat trauma and trauma-related conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It is based on the idea that particular eye movements can help the brain process and resolve traumatic memories.
During EMDR therapy, I guide the client through a series of eye movements or other types of bilateral stimulation (such as tapping or auditory tones) while the client focuses on a traumatic memory. The goal is to help the client process the memory and reduce the negative emotions and beliefs associated with it.
How many EMDR sessions will I need?
Many of my clients feel a shift after just one session. But to heal properly, anywhere from 4-12 sessions may be needed.
Ready to heal childhood trauma?
If you are serious about healing your trauma and its negative effects on your mental and physical health, using EMDR, hypnotherapy, CBT or other psychotherapy to address trauma, book a FREE info chat on the button below.