Define Trauma; and Let’s Look at Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Define Trauma; and Let’s Look at Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Define trauma, well let us do that.  Looking at the dictionaries, I found where one placed Physiologic trauma first and then described psychological trauma.  Looking further down, psychological trauma was displayed first and then physiological trauma was defined. The source of  Definitions #1 and #2  are from the internet, and #3 from “The Trauma Nursing Course and Trauma Nursing” textbook used by the Emergency Nurses Association for the Trauma Nursing Course.

  • Definition # 1 –
1. Pathology
     a.  a body wound or shock produced by sudden physical injury, as from
          violence or accident.
      b. the condition produced by this; traumatism.
 2.  Psychiatry
       a. an experience that produces psychological injury or pain.
       b. the psychological injury so caused.
  • Definition # 2 –

1.  psychol –  a powerful shock that may have long-lasting effects

2. pathol –  any bodily injury or wound

  • Definition # 3 –

1. Trauma is a major threat to the immediate and often long term health

of individuals.

Now from my heart! Imagine being a nurse for many a year. Well, no imagine; this one, I have been a  “Trauma Nurse”, and have spent a major portion of my career as a nurse in the Emergency Department. And could I tell you some stories, yes, but not now. Don’t get me wrong, this is my profession and I sure do love it, but you have to be certified for everything, including trauma care.

Imagine now as you have sat through the parts of the course for; Epidemiology, Biomechanics, and Mechanisms of Injury, and the part comes up where NHTSA come and present their facts. Yes, The National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration people; (lovingly referred to as the “Crash Dummy People”) come with all of their statistics inclusive of when they began and what they do. “The act was motivated primarily by growing public concern over the rising number of traffic fatalities in the United States. Between 1960 and 1965, the annual number of traffic fatalities increased by nearly thirty percent. As President Lyndon B. Johnson stated at the signing of the act on September 9, 1966, ” … we have tolerated a raging epidemic of highway death … which has killed more of our youth than all other diseases combined. Through the Highway Safety Act, we are going to find out more about highway disease and we aim to cure it.”

Add on now, to the discussion of the Golden Hour of Trauma Care. This is an hour that refers to the time period following a traumatic injury during which there is the highest likelihood of survival. Some part of my mind combined together the discussions and somehow went back and found the death of my beloved brother Floyd.  Floyd was killed in a collision between his convertibal and a tractor trailer carrying logs. The time of course being before the laws that would regulate for tractor trailers  to have the reflectors all along them to help clarify their length. Would it have helped my brother, can’t say. But from what I heard, the tractor trailor was  stretched across the road and my brother not seing it …

        All of this to say that somewhere in this discussion the trauma of my brothers death came barreling to the front of my mind at 100+ miles per hour, leaving me with no defenses; my heart was suddenly heavy and the tears filled my eyes so fast, they stung and just fell. Needless to say, I had to leave this discussion in order to compose myself.

Post Traumatic Stress happens to all of us, and the truth be told, we are at the mercy of these traumas and the memories of them as they come hurling back up at you!  I somehow was able to get control of myself,  probably due to the length of time between that trauma and it’s rentry into my cognition.

For sure, this could be called a mild case of post traumatic stress. Trust me, for whatever the reason, and when this memory comes to mind, the effects are the same.  It was burried up until a few minutes ago.

But, now this time and a Big old BUT;  of which this one I am happy to own is that I have had Neurolinguistic Programming Therapy and Time Line Therapy and the effects of Fear, Anger and Sadness have been put into proper perspective for me. To which I am encouraging all who have any form of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to avail themselves of therapies to help with that.

You can find help here at Victory Road Wellness Center through the modality of your choice:

  • Optimum Plus Foot Spa Bath
  • Rife Therapy Treaments
  • Neurolinguistinc Programming
  • Hypnotherapy
  • Arometherapy
  • Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)
  • Counseling

Now, to decsribe some of the symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and what to look for, so that you can identify it and get help for it before  it turns in to something else and you become incapacitated and unable to function.

Symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

  • Anger
  • Irritability
  • Guilt
  • Shame
  • Self Blame
  • Trust Issues
  • Depression
  • Hopelessness
  • Suicidal Thoughts
  • Feeling Alone
  • Physical Aches and Pains
  • Others

Everyone has their own ways in which their symptoms will be manifested, so you can know that this list is hardly inclusive of all.  Every person is a unique individual and will have his/her own experiences in their own way. The key point here is to identify the  normal from the abnormal.

Normal Responses to Trauma and Grief:

5 stages of Grief

  • Denial
  • Anger
  • Bargainaing
  • Depression
  • Acceptance

Recognition that shock ensues after a traumatic experience and it is emotional at this point and can and often does later develop into various physical pains and ailments.

Looking back on the lives of my two brothers who were Vietnam Veterans, clearly the earmarkings of Post Traumatic Stress can be identified.

Families need help too! Either to offer help or obtain help for the effects of the trauma now that has been depositied into their lives from the trauma of the affected family member. In the instance of  my own famly, we were only able to offer help and support to my brothers from the resources we had on hand, leaning on the Lord and praying and being present and very close to them as much as we could and were allowed.

The thing is these Veterans, also know as James and John Thomas  (RIP); did not talk and let us know what they needed help with. And here again,  I want to stress the need for the families that are affected  to seek help as well.

Children to suffer from post traumatic stress disorder. Some symptoms may include:

  • Separational Anxiety
  • Regression – loosing previously acquired skills; i.e.  toilet training
  • Sleep problems and nightmares
  • Phobias, Fears and Anxieties
  • Aches and Pains  “Fathom”
  • Unexplained Irritability
  • Agression

In case you have family members who were in the Vietnam War who did not talk about it, perhaps this video will help you to know what they went through over there.
Than You L/CPL Chris Lambert; USMC. See Video below of his story of  after being traumtized for years with PTSD is now free from it.

Please know also that the Health Care Bill, affectionalely called Obama Care has resources in it to help take care of our Veteran’s as they return home.  For Job Placement as well as for Health Care for Post Traumatic Stress.Victory Road Wellness Center want’s you to know that help is available here to for Veteran’s  at reduced pricing, as a way to Salute you and say Thank You for your Service!!!!
Please do not hesitate to contact us for any further questions or comments:

  Victory Road Wellness Center

Call:         (301) 728-1720     


Email:   Click on link below

Text For Link Here

          The Spirit to Care and the Skill to Help!!

                Walk In Broken – Walk Out In Victory!!

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  1. Laura Hegfield March 12, 2012 at 6:09 pm #

    This is such a powerful testimony of your experience Louise. I appreciate your openness. My niece, my brother’s daughter, is studying psychology in college with an intention to focus her life’s work on treating ptsd. Her father is an ER nurse, she has been an EMT since ages 15 (21 now). Compassionate, courageous humans can facilitate deep healing for those who suffer with PTSD. Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving a kind message.

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