Trauma

Are you suffering with possible symptoms of trauma?

This page has information about how the RCN Counselling Service is offering trauma-focused therapy to RCN members.

Trauma-focused therapy

If you have experienced a traumatic incident and would like to discuss whether the RCN Counselling Service could help you, please call the RCN telephone helpline on 0345 772 6100.

The RCN Counselling Service will offer a person-centred assessment and, if applicable, offer trauma-focused therapy with one of our accredited counsellors.

Depending on need, we will offer 8 - 12 individual sessions as recommended by NICE guidelines.

We currently have funding to January 2022, and access to trauma-focused therapy is on a “first come, first served” basis.


CHSA logo COVID-19 Healthcare Support Appeal via the RCN Counselling Service and Trauma based therapy

CHSA (COVID-19 Healthcare Support Appeal)

This service has been made possible by the COVID-19 Healthcare Support Appeal, which funds projects to support health and care workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

What is psychological trauma?

Trauma is a reaction to any event to which a person is connected that:

  • is unexpected
  • is outside their usual range of human experience
  • involves some form of loss, injury, threat of injury/death (whether actual or perceived.)

Types of Trauma

  • Childhood adverse events i.e. abuse, neglect
  • Single traumatic event (maybe life threatening) such as road traffic accident, assault, terrorist incident, child birth trauma
  • Multiple trauma over time such as death of patients/residents, several serious illnesses/injuries, domestic violence/abuse

Trauma Symptoms

In response to extremely stressful life experiences there are difficulties that individuals sometimes have after trauma. Some of the most common trauma symptoms can include:

  • Flashbacks or nightmares
  • repetitive and distressing images or sensations
  • depression/anxiety
  • irritability or angry outbursts
  •  panic attacks
  • feeling numb, spacing out or dissociating
  •  problems sleeping or relaxing
  • difficulty concentrating
  • negative thoughts such as shame, guilt, self-loathing, self-blame or self-doubt
  • physical sensations such as pain, sweating, stomach pain, chest pain, feeling sick or trembling
  • self-harming or destructive behaviour, such as drug misuse or alcohol misuse
  • suicidal thoughts or feelings

It may help to know that:

  • Most people experience trauma in their lifetime
  • Healing from trauma is a natural process
  • You are not weak or defective if you suffer with symptoms. They are normal reactions to an abnormal situation

How do I recover from trauma?

The natural healing from trauma can take several weeks after an incident. Symptoms are usually expected to subside and resolve themselves in time.

If you are still having symptoms after 4 weeks then speak to your GP about seeking medical advice or specialist trauma support.

If you have been diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), then specialist psychological support such as Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) or Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (TFCBT) is needed.

To read more about how trauma might effect you, see Effects of Trauma on the Mind.org website.


COVID-19 and your mental wellbeing resources

You can find some great resources and information about where you can get extra support on our COVID-19 and your mental wellbeing page.

Counselling

Get support with personal or work related issues such as stress, depression or relationship breakdown.

coronavirus

COVID-19 and your mental health

Advice and resources on how to look after your mental wellbeing during the Covid-19 (coronavirus) outbreak, with tips for self care.