Tools for Managing PTSD


We know that each day brings new stressors in your life, in this blog we would like to inform you of some new ways to help manage your PTSD.


Window Of Tolerance

There are many different tools that can help you stay inside your window of tolerance and manage PTSD triggers. One important tool is self-awareness. Knowing your personal triggers and what sends you outside of your WoT is essential for managing PTSD. It’s also important to have a support system in place, whether that be friends, family, or a therapist. Lastly, it’s helpful to have coping mechanisms in place to deal with traumatic-stress responses when they occur. Some people find relaxation techniques like yoga or meditation helpful, while others may prefer journaling or talking to someone about their experiences. No matter what works for you, finding ways to cope with PTSD is crucial for managing the disorder effectively.

Validate your Experience

What you have experienced is real and hurtful. Having the name or context of traumatic stress/PTSD lets you know you that how you feel is not your fault. There is nothing “wrong” with you. What you’re going through is actually a normal response to abnormal experiences. It’s important to remind yourself of this as you go through challenging symptoms because self-validation is an important piece of healing.

Validate your Experience What _____ experience ______, _________________. Having the name or context of traumatic stress/PTSD lets _______ know that how______feel isn't their fault. There's nothing "wrong" with them . How they're feeling it's actually a normal response to their trauma.

Breathe Slowly and Deeply

It’s important to have a support system in place, whether that be friends, family, or a therapist.

It’s helpful to have coping mechanisms in place to deal with traumatic-stress responses when they occur. Some people find relaxation techniques like yoga or meditation helpful, while others may prefer journaling or talking to someone about their experiences. No matter what works for you, finding ways to cope with PTSD is crucial for managing the disorder effectively.

No matter what works for you, finding ways to cope with PTSD is crucial for managing the disorder effectively. By taking care of yourself both mentally and physically, you can improve your quality of life and manage PTSD symptoms more effectively. Remember, you are not alone in this. There are many people who understand what you’re going through and want to help. Reach out for support when you need it, and keep moving forward. You can do this!

Focus on your Senses

Start with five different things you see (the trees outside the window), hear (the buzzing of the air conditioner), sense with your skin (my collar on my neck or a warm breeze on my arms), taste (the lingering of coffee on my tongue), and smell (stale air or perfume). Then notice four of each, then three of each, and so on. Be as specific about these items as you can to make you really concentrate on external factors and to get out of your head. Pay attention to things like shape, scent, texture and color. You will probably be back to the present moment before you even realize it. Trauma is all too common in our world today but taking time for yourself when possible can help.

Think Positively

Bring to mind something positive. Such as a beautiful flower, a sunset, a smile on someone's face or a compliment from a friend or colleague. And really focus on it for 12 seconds. Breathe and notice its impact on your body and emotions. According to neuropsychologist Dr. Rick Hanson, it only takes 12 seconds for the creation of new neuron connections. These positive experiences have the ability to replace stress/fear based thinking and coping (Walsh).

Use Gravity or a Weighted Blanket

A symptom of PTSD is sleep disturbances (which includes insomnia), nightmares, flashbacks and high anxiety. Not getting enough of the type of sleep you need can cause you to have problems concentrating, leading to difficulties at work and/or school. It can lead to irritability, negatively impacting important relationships. There is research to show that using a weighted blanket, which simulates being held or hugged safely and firmly, can assist in reducing anxiety and insomnia.

Laugh

Laughing is one of the best things you can do for your mental and physical health, according to recent research.

Laughing releases specific hormones that boost your immune system and rewire your brain. This helps reduce stress levels by releasing tension in muscles across the body and burning calories while energizing the mind at the same time. A good way to release some endorphins into your night or morning is watching a funny video on Youtube with friends when circumstances get serious. It’s also great just hanging out with someone who makes you laugh because they are naturally hilarious or have mastered being witty! Sometimes it feels difficult being vulnerable enough to let them know how much their humor means but it will be worth it if you truly care about them!