All over the world, countless individuals struggle with PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). In virtually all cases, PTSD is brought about as a result of traumatic events, experiences or encounters. According to the American Psychiatric Association, once exposed to the events which can trigger it, nobody is exempt from experiencing PTSD.

Nightmares, anger, sadness, depression and a lack of desire to be around other people are real side effects associated with PTSD. This issue also manifests in the form of avoiding people, places, or things that remind them of the upsetting event which transpired. Despite this avoidance, individuals who have PTSD may still have severe flashbacks which makes them feel as though they are reliving the experience which traumatized them.

People who live with PTSD should seek professional help, such as group therapy. Contrary to what some people believe, there is absolutely nothing wrong with professional therapy, and in the case of someone who is dealing with PTSD, it can be a life-saving thing. At the very least, PTSD group therapy can help individuals regain control of their lives and rise above the traumatic event which happened to them.

PTSD Group therapy: The benefits

While it is easy to suggest that someone should attend PTSD group therapy, they are more likely to participate in the process when they know the benefits they’ll get from seeking professional help. Below are some benefits of group therapy for the individual.

Support From Others

One of the greatest upsides of PTSD group therapy is having support from other individuals who may be struggling with the condition too. Estrangement and isolation are not healthy for people who do not have PTSD which makes them even more insidious for individuals who are struggling. Togetherness, community and having a strong support system is imperative for those who are working to overcome PTSD.

Support systems are important to people who are struggling with any condition. This is true regardless of whether or not an individual is dealing with PTSD. Forming healthy relationships and connections is always good and ensures that a struggling person does not feel alone and without anyone to turn to. Many individuals have tragically lost their lives as a result of their affliction with PTSD. If you are going through a rough time or battling this yourself, then support from others is one of many ways that PTSD group therapy can change your life.

Developing Social Skills

There is always a degree of socialization that takes place when one participates in group therapy of any nature. To individuals who have recently undergone traumatic events or experiences, this is very healthy and beneficial. During the very beginning stages of the healing process, pulling away from others may occur. To a certain extent, this is normal and understandable. However, when taken to extremes or when it lasts for too long, it can be dangerous. Human beings were not meant to be alone and isolated from others.

Participation in PTSD group therapy allowed individuals who were previously traumatized to open up to others and come out of their shell. This may happen over weeks and months, but the combined benefits of working with a professional, having the support from other members of the group, finding your voice and listening to those who have had similar experiences make a significant difference over some time. One of the most important things to remember is that each person heals and rehabilitates in their own time, but the benefits of PTSD group therapy can truly help expedite this process.

Things To Remember

The benefits of PTSD group therapy are well-documented across the board. However, despite these upsides, there are still certain things to keep in mind, particularly if you are someone who may be dealing with PTSD.

Progress Takes Time

It is important to understand that it may take time for some of these benefits to manifest. In most cases, progress is the result of ongoing, habitual acts. If you don’t see the benefits in the first few sessions, that’s ok. The important thing to remember is that if you stick the course, keep attending sessions and participating in therapy to the best of your ability; you will eventually see the payoff.

You Are More Than What Happened To You

Even when you are participating in PTSD group therapy, knowing that you are more than what happened to you can be easy to lose sight of. PTSD is a very real issue and it can all-consuming for so many people. The symptoms are no joke, and this is why PTSD group therapy, support from others, and feeling as though you are part of something bigger than yourself makes such a huge difference.

You Will Bounce Back From This

When you’re dealing with PTSD each day, it may feel as though there is no light at the end of the tunnel, but there is! As hard as it may be to imagine, if you keep working hard, keep pushing and keep fighting, you will make it through. You will rise above and overcome this. The key is to continue taking steps to heal, better yourself, and improve each day.
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This article on PTSD group therapy is part of a series is developing to educate the public about mental health and therapy.
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