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One of the problems people face in recognizing and accepting their trauma as trauma is the false belief that trauma has to look a certain way. They believe their life experiences are not “bad” enough to be categorized as trauma. Fortunately, there are no governing bodies or written laws which distinctively define trauma as being one thing versus another. What does exist is a collection of professionals who emphatically define trauma as being anything which has a negative impact. Judy Crane, in The Trauma Heart explains that trauma is “any life event or series of life events or ongoing life events that create a negative impact on your life that changes or distorts your vision of yourself and your place in the world.” If your life experiences include loud noises or being abruptly startled and that changes the way you respond to loud noises and being abruptly startled- that is trauma. It is critical to remember that nobody can tell you what your trauma is, how your trauma should be responded to, or how your trauma should affect your life. Once trauma makes an impact on your mind and body by changing the way your nervous system responds to the world, trauma changes your life.

People experience severe verbal, emotional, and mental abuse in their lifetimes. Though this kind of abuse leaves scars, the scars aren’t physical, as with physical abuse. Non-physical abuse can include yelling, doors slamming, items being thrown, glasses being broken, windows being smashed, and abrupt changes in mood, behavior, voice volume, and much more. Someone may have experienced a traumatizing car crash, accident, or injury which involved loud, abrupt noises as well.

Since trauma affects the nervous system, all of these sounds become the foundation for triggers. When someone is triggered in their trauma, it is not as if they are being reminded of these disturbing moments. Someone who has experienced trauma involving loud noises is not brought back to the moment when the trauma handed. On the contrary, the moment of trauma is being brought to them, in the present, as if it is happening in real time. Feelings of being frightened and out of control come immediately thereafter as survival instincts kick in through the fight or flight response. Then, however trauma manifests individually, those responses might take place.

Be gentle with yourself and considerate of others on this holiday of loud noises and explosions. Remind yourself and others that trauma is unique and individual. Everyone deserves to have their trauma carefully considered.

At The Guest House Ocala, we offer residential treatment programs specialized for the care of traumas, addictions, and related mental health issues. Call us today for information on our trauma treatment programs and our concierge style customization for every guest: 1-855-483-7800