Can you reverse post-traumatic stress disorder?
My grandfather fought in World War II. As a child, I would often ask him: “What is war like?” He never answered.
The memories were too painful. He never talked about them. He just drank.
Every memory or thought about the war brought the same emotions in him AS IF HE HAD BEEN IN THE MIDDLE OF IT.
He wasn’t. There was no war around. But he still felt it as if it was his PRESENT reality.
One consequence of PTSD is that once your brain has been hardwired to expect danger, it cannot distinguish between thoughts and reality.
A thought of war feels like an actual war.
PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) has been known for a long time – during World War I, it was called “shell shock.” But it wasn’t until the 1980s that a corresponding diagnosis was proposed.
What is the mechanism of PTSD?
John Bradshaw, the author of the bestseller Healing the Shame That Binds You, says that when a person goes through a traumatic experience, it gets imprinted in their brain within the next 72 hours unless they are able to talk it through with someone they trust.
Because trauma does not get registered in the brain when met with relentless empathy.
Trauma gets recorded in the brain and causes PTSD symptoms under one condition – the person has FELT an overwhelming emotion but never got any empathy.
In other words, when a person talks through their experience with someone they trust within the first 3 days, the brain does not create neuron pathways (electrical connections) that produce PTSD-related symptoms.
If, however, they suppress or deny their feelings, the traumatic event eventually gets hardwired in the brain.
When trauma gets hardwired in the brain, the brain gets chemically conditioned to expect the same traumatic experience again and again (and releases the same chemicals before the event happens).
What does that mean?Continue reading “Reverse Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) by Increasing “Happy” Hormones”