Term Paper: Trauma Is Considered as 'Mental

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[. . .] It is a disturbance of emotional adaptation. The symptoms of Neurosis include many emotional and mental changes. The symptoms of Neurosis is generally so widespread among people that it is considered often more proper today to speak of them as to their degree of presence or as to the degree of resulting disability than merely as to their strict presence or absence in any given individual. From this modern and enlightened point-of-view, any prejudice towards a neurotically sick person or his stigmatization on this basis is simply inappropriate. There are some types of Neuroses that have a closer causal relationship with Trauma than others.

These, in particular, include: Anxiety reactions: Anxiety Neurosis is an established and more or less chronic emotional illness. It constitutes one of the anxiety reactions (the other two major ones being the acute anxiety attack or panic and the anxiety state). It is characterized primarily by the presence of anxiety and by the more direct expressions and consequences of anxiety. Conversion reactions: The conversion reactions: In the Conversion reaction, we are particularly interested in the Somatic (bodily) conversions in which consciously disowned impulses and conflicts over them are transmuted in to symbolic bodily expression. Chondriac Reactions (over concern with health) and The hypochondriacal reactions include state of somatic and physiologic preoccupation or over concern with health. This is a neurosis in which there is an obsessive kind of persistent over concern with some aspect of physical or emotional health. Traumatic neurosis (neurosis following Trauma)

Neurotic illnesses generally might be regarded as being of a Traumatic origin. Such Trauma as noted earlier is psychic, physical or both. Early psychic Trauma, for example, may lay the foundation for later emotional illness. The effects may remain latent, contributing, however, to the later vulnerability of the individual to either physical or psychological Traumatic events of a psychological nature are uncovered with the definitive psychotherapy of every case of neurosis. These may be little or great. They may be single or multiple. However, they will have contributed in varying degree to the development of the neurosis. On occasions they may be of major importance. They may have served to precipitate an incipient or latent neurosis. In other instances they may be regarded rather as aggravating an existing emotional situation that was already unstable. These are not imaginary illness. They are not imaginary disabilities that result. They are terribly real and terribly troubling to the person concerned. These four are perhaps the most common types that have a close relationship with Trauma.

Indeed, from the very broadest point-of-view, all emotional illnesses could perhaps be regarded as ultimately Traumatic in origin. Then, in later life, Traumatic events of a psychological or a physical nature may serve important functions as (1) initiating (2) precipitating (3) contributing to an illness, or (4) aggravating a disability or illness which has already been established. (Dunbar, 1948) When we are dealing with the neurosis following trauma we are dealing with a group of neurotic reactions and not with a single specific entity. Any kind of Neurosis can follow Trauma. Trauma can be physical, psychic or a combination of both and its role can vary widely in the initiation of symptoms. Post Traumatic stress disorder arises in response to stressful events of short or long duration. Typical features include constant recollecting of the trauma in memory, nightmarish experiences, s sense of emotional numbness and detachment from people and total indifference to the surroundings. Suicidal reaction is not infrequent.

In the case of traumatic neurosis adjustment disorder it is a state of emotional disturbance that usually interferes with social functioning and performance in response to a stressful life event. The stress may have affected the individual's social network like for instance bereavement or a sense of alienation. This may also happen over major developmental transition or crisis like going to school, becoming a parent, failure to attain a cherished personal goal, retirement. Individual predisposition or vulnerability plays an important role in the risk of occurrence which includes depressed mood or worry or both as well as some degree of disability in the present situation and disability in performing the daily routines. Conduct disorders are mostly associated with adolescents. The predominant feature may be a brief or prolonged depressive reaction or a disturbance of other emotions and conduct. (Cattell, 1963)

The interrelationships of personality and behavior and of Trauma are extremely complex. A quick and superficial conclusion that there is a simple causative relationship between Trauma and personality or behavior change is probably erroneous. Careful investigation of all the major determining factors is essential. Therapy for Trauma, to be successful, requires an actively co-operative patient who participates in collaborative fashion in the treatment. Psychotherapy, which has gathered tremendous significance in diagnosis and treatment of psychological diseases including Trauma related problems, is the suggested approach and must be in the hands of a skilled physician with graduate specialist training and adequate experience in the field of Psychiatry. Psychotherapy and analysis are actually an educative process of considerable depth, more personal and meaningful than many other and more usual kinds of educational approach. (Weiss; English, 1949)

The progressive as well as the previous phase of persons who have come across a traumatic experience is related to the nature of sensory information and its potency. The vicinity of the person affected by trauma, in a great way determines his/her mental stamina. In this aspect, prior experience should be given prime importance since the individual's sensory information at the point of trauma is associated with his current experience. In this case, a question may arise. What is the primary source of information? The answer is invariably-senses. They act as the institution for memory, which has happened already. The pre-traumatic equilibrium has been established as a balance between existing hassles and the adaptive capacity of an individual to such hassles.

When people encounter a traumatic event, a deep emotional response is expected. To quote a very recent traumatic experience, the incident of September 11, 2001 will haunt the lives of the survivors for quite some time. Generally, the grief over the traumatic event may be so painful that the individual will experience a severe mental block. At the beginning, there may be an exhilarated reaction by the survivors of trauma, which is caused due to nature. The effect of the Wegee Creek/Pipe Creek flood in Southeastern Ohio, dated June 14, 1990, was that it left 24 people dead and 60 homes destroyed. Two months after the catastrophe, one of the survivors remarked, that they lost everything that they owned, but have their lives, and it's time for a new beginning.

Safety is the prime concern for man, and when he finds it is not guaranteed by the wild play of nature, such as earthquakes or hurricanes, he finds difficult to cope up with it. Such traumatic experiences wobble the fundamentals of our certainty about safety, and explode our hypothesis of faith. This is because, generally we are not prepared to face such traumatic events and live in a world of paradise. The traumatic experience, being somewhat a threat to the individual's life, is viewed in a manner where survival of the fittest is the axiom. Finally, when we are encountered with such events, we feel it to be very strange and out of world. In this case, our reactions are not abnormal, only the event being so. The irony is that man construes it in the other way. Through generations, there is a strong belief that trauma has strong effect on human behavior including the sensory organs. But to what extent? Sometimes, the extent can be confined for a few months after the traumatic experience. (Lazarus; Folkman, 1984) diagnostic category is generally used to depict the indicators arising from emotionally traumatic occurrence. For this purpose, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is used. Depression, anxiety, and dissociation are some of the other disorders that arise after a traumatic experience. Not everyone who has encountered a trauma will develop PTSD. Life is only full of generalized concepts. Only in extreme cases where the symptoms persist for many days that professional help is required. But nothing heals like a loving word or action. Research indicate that a large number of people who have undergone severe trauma face PSTD. The National Vietnam Veteran Readjustment Study and National Comorbidity Study found high lifetime PTSD rates. But this survey can be combated in the sense that trauma exposure alone does not lead to PTSD. Certain people might have had prior exposure to trauma, or they would have had problems in childhood. Moreover their personality prior to trauma should not be confused with the trauma itself. This is proved by a sample of Vietnam veterans of war where panic disorder was highly related to trauma. There are also cases where, in a sample POWs, family history of mental illness and severe childhood trauma did not forecast PTSD. (American Journal of Psychiatry-1997)

PTSD that lasts more than 16-18 months… [END OF PREVIEW]

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