In mental health circles, the term trauma refers to a psychological phenomenon involving a sudden, life-threatening, or horrifying experience, often followed by troubling memories and reactions. The term traumatization refers to the process by which a trauma occurs or is experienced, including both objective and subjective aspects about the event and a person's reactions to the event. Unfortunately, many people have more than one traumatic experience in their lifetimes. When individuals experience multiple traumas or traumatizations, it can often be said that they have been retraumatized.

The effects of retraumatization are thought to be cumulative, such that the experience of multiple traumatic events has a greater psychological impact than does a singular trauma. Research supports that supposition, finding that multiple traumas are associated with more psychological ...

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