Cognitive-behavioral therapy and SSRIs (selective
serotonin reuptake inhibitors) are the most effective treatments for PTSD. There is also evidence that eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) works. Some other kinds of counseling may be helpful
in your recovery from
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). But more evidence is needed to support these other treatments for PTSD.
Many people want to talk about their
trauma with others who have had similar experiences.
therapy, you talk with a group of people who also have been through a trauma
and who have PTSD. Sharing your story with others may help you feel more
comfortable talking about your trauma. This can help you cope with your
symptoms, memories, and other parts of your life.
helps you build relationships with others who understand what you've been
through. You learn to deal with emotions such as shame, guilt, anger, rage, and
fear. Sharing with the group also can help you build self-confidence and trust.
You'll learn to focus on your present life, rather than feeling overwhelmed by
Brief psychodynamic psychotherapy
In this type of
therapy, you learn ways of dealing with emotional conflicts caused by your
trauma. This therapy helps you understand how your past affects the way you
Your therapist can help you:
- Identify what triggers your stressful memories and other
- Find ways to cope with intense feelings about the
- Become more aware of your thoughts and feelings, so you can
change your reactions to them.
- Raise your self-esteem.
PTSD can impact your whole family.
Your kids or your partner may not understand why you get angry sometimes, or
why you're under so much stress. They may feel scared, guilty, or even angry
about your condition.
Family therapy is a type of counseling that
involves your whole family. A therapist helps you and your family communicate,
maintain good relationships, and cope with tough emotions. Your family can
learn more about PTSD and how it is treated.
In family therapy,
each person can express his or her fears and concerns. It's important to be
honest about your feelings and to listen to others. You can talk about your
PTSD symptoms and what triggers them. You also can discuss the important parts
of your treatment and recovery. By doing this, your family will be better
prepared to help you.
You may consider having individual therapy
for your PTSD symptoms and family therapy to help you with your relationships.
For more information, see the topic
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.