Experiencing a traumatic event can have a huge impact on every aspect of your life. From your physical and mental health to your finances and social life, it will take time to adjust to your new circumstances.
Prioritising your mental health is important, so finding ways to talk about your trauma is helpful for your healing.
What is a traumatic event?
A traumatic event is an occurrence that causes you physical, emotional, or psychological harm. It may evoke feelings of fear, panic, and anxiety in the moment and for a while after.
Many different events can be classified as traumatic, such as car accidents, crimes, being stuck in a lift, domestic violence, or losing a loved one. Ultimately, though, people will deal with these events differently so if something feels traumatic to you, it is.
How will I feel after a traumatic event?
After a traumatic event, your emotions and feelings will be all over the place. It is common for people to experience flashbacks of the incident itself. They can happen at any point, even when you are sleeping.
It is also usual to feel upset, anxious, stressed, and fearful of being in that situation again, even when it is something out of your control like being mugged. You may experience memory loss as your brain tries to block out the traumatic event.
Talking to a professional or even friends and family can help to give voice to those feelings which will help you to reconcile them. By verbalising how you feel, you can begin to untangle the web of emotions, some of which won’t be clear until you start talking.
What should I do after I’ve experienced a traumatic event?
The first step you should take after a traumatic event is to seek medical care, either via the emergency services or an appointment with your GP. They will be able to check you over physically and make sure you haven’t suffered any hidden injuries. If you have suffered long-term injuries, set up all the relevant appointments for your recovery and lean on friends and family for transport.
If your injury has occurred due to negligence at work, for example, you may want to start thinking about claiming compensation. This will help with any time you have off work, any expenses you have to pay that are abnormal, and anything else you need.
Finally, seek professional therapy. If you have been left with lingering emotions, a change in your usual behaviour due to mental health issues, or even if you are struggling to come to terms with the traumatic event, a therapist is a person to speak to. They will be able to give you coping techniques and explore your feelings in a safe, calm environment.