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Managing Trauma Symptoms

Persons who are coping with the aftermath of traumatic life events tend to find themselves overwhelmed with intrusive thoughts, images, or memories of the event, as well as difficulties in managing strong emotions. Common symptoms that individuals may experience include repeated intrusive memories, images, or flashbacks of the trauma; nightmares or bad dreams; and feelings of anxiety, panic attacks, and physical reactions associated with anxiety (e.g., racing heart, muscle tension, shortness of breath). Additional symptoms that may occur include numbing of emotions (e.g., an absence of loving feelings toward others), sleep disturbance, irritability or anger, concentration problems, and jumpiness.

Certain behaviors are common after traumatic events, including avoidance of anything that reminds the person of the trauma (e.g., thoughts, images, memories, feelings, places, activities, situations), distancing ...

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