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The Impact of the News on Mental Health and Trauma Recovery

The 24-hour news media cycle makes it difficult to ignore negative events going on in the world. The impact of the news can be especially harmful to an individual in mental health or trauma recovery. With the right tools, you can find relief from this type of stress and enjoy success in your healing journey.

Impact of the News on Mental Health

According to a 2022 study in JMIR Mental Health, research has found “a relationship between watching distressing news and lower emotional well-being, including elevated anxiety and worry.” The study pointed to evidence that indicated a link between “elevated exposure to news coverage of mass trauma events (e.g., natural disasters, terrorist attacks)” and “symptoms of anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress.”

Even though this study mainly sought to determine a relationship between mental health and traumatic news, like the COVID-19 crisis, it can be argued that individuals are affected daily by traumatic news stories. From robberies to murder to terrorist attacks, there is no shortage of negative news that can affect a person’s mental well-being.

Televised Trauma and Emotional Wellbeing

In recent years, a lot of scientific attention has been placed on the effects of televised trauma and the emotional well-being of those who watch it. According to a 2015 study in Psychiatry, the general public is “placed at risk of developing distress and possibly post-traumatic psychopathology as a result of secondary exposure via mass media.” In fact, viewers who watched constant newscasts more than usual were “1.6 times more likely to report at least one anxiety symptom compared to those watching at the same frequency or less.”

Impact of the News on Recovery

The 2015 Psychiatry study also found that anxiety from frequent news viewing resulted in symptoms like “uncontrolled fear, physiological hyper-arousal, sleeping difficulties, and fearful thoughts.” Many people who are in recovery are no strangers to these symptoms, to begin with. Exposure to negative news media can exacerbate them and stall a person’s healing process.

Even constant exposure to everyday negative news, like robberies and car accidents, can cause a person to feel unsafe. If an individual is in recovery, this can cause them to question their safety and even their happiness.

Impact of the News on Trauma

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 57, a trigger is a “stimulus that sets off a memory of a trauma or a specific portion of a traumatic experience.” Traumatic stories in the news can trigger painful memories for a person in trauma recovery or mental health treatment. These experiences can be extremely upsetting and emotionally painful.

SAMHSA says some triggers can be easily anticipated and identified, while others are more “subtle and inconspicuous.” Since the news is a natural part of daily life, many people are unaware of its inconspicuous dangers.

Individuals in trauma recovery may be subtly reminded of their trauma after seeing news stories about events like car accidents or domestic violence. This can catch a person off guard, making it more important than ever to have resources at their disposal to help them through.

“Doomscrolling” and Social Media

In today’s day and age, negative news consumption is easier than ever, thanks to social media. Many people can’t resist the impulse of negative news, leading them to get stuck in a frequent pattern of scrolling headlines. This constant monitoring is known as “doomscrolling.”

According to a 2021 article in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, feelings of fear, anger, and sadness can be triggered by negative headlines. When a person gets stuck in a doomscrolling spiral, this can take a serious toll on their mental health. The article says that even mundane news can lead to “increased distress, anxiety and depression.” However, cultivating optimism can be a big help in enhancing the brain’s defenses against bad news.

Healing at The Guest House

The Guest House welcomes individuals who are in need of deep healing from a wide variety of concerns. Our programs will help you through recovery using both traditional and holistic modalities. The 24/7 news cycle can leave you feeling more stressed than ever before. At The Guest House, we will help you turn away from the news and re-discover life’s joys through the best methods and tools for you.

Co-Occurring Trauma and Mental Health Disorders

Individuals who experience trauma often struggle with one or more mental health disorders. At The Guest House, we offer comprehensive care that will treat both conditions at once. Our care center specializes in providing you with a completely personalized experience. Everyone’s trauma is very much their own, and it needs to be treated as such. The same goes for mental health concerns. Even if you have the same diagnosis as another person, your experience is still entirely unique to you.

Traditional and Holistic Treatment

The Guest House offers a wide variety of treatment modalities that will allow you to create your own toolkit for healing. Our traditional modalities include individual therapy, which can help you talk one-on-one with a highly-trained member of our staff. You also have the ability to process your thoughts and feelings in a group therapy setting, among others who will understand your struggles.

We also offer a myriad of holistic therapies to help you heal your mind, body, and soul together as one. You can partake in a yoga class, or you may want to try equine therapy outdoors on our beautiful estate.

No matter your interests, there is bound to be something you will enjoy at The Guest House. Our large variety of programs will help you re-discover yourself as you learn to enjoy life more than ever before.

The impact of the news on mental health and trauma recovery can be severe. For those already struggling with traumatic experiences or mental health conditions, negative news can exacerbate the issues. In a world where the news can easily be consumed at any time of day, it’s more important than ever to find activities and modalities to help you find happiness through recovery. At The Guest House, we offer a wide variety of treatment modalities to help you process trauma and overcome mental health conditions. Our traditional and holistic methods can help you heal your mind, body, and soul together as one. For more information, call us today at (855) 483-7800.