Trauma is an emotional reaction to a distressing event. Immediate traumatic reactions, such as denial or shock, are to be expected after a person has experienced something extremely upsetting, but it is the long-term effects of trauma that can become problematic. Healing from trauma is possible with the right trauma therapy program.
The treatment options at Foothills at Red Oak Recovery are designed specifically for helping teen boys. Contact Foothills at Red Oak Recovery today at 866.300.5275 for more information.
Not every person who experiences an extreme event struggles with lingering trauma, but trauma responses are normal reactions to abnormal situations. Acute emotional trauma is the response that happens during or directly after a distressing event, while chronic emotional trauma is a long-term response that can last months or years.
The types of events that can cause trauma in adolescents include:
- Child abuse or neglect
- Physical and verbal abuse
- Extreme poverty
- Domestic violence
- Surviving a natural disaster
- Medical trauma
- Sexual abuse, sex trafficking
- Living with a parent or guardian who has a mental health disorder, including substance abuse
- Violence in their community, witnessing violent acts
- The sudden or unexpected loss of a loved one
- War/refugee trauma
The long-term effects of trauma can be both emotional and physical. They may include:
- Changes in attitude or behavior
- Difficulty functioning day to day
- Avoidance (avoiding the people or places related to their trauma)
- Social withdrawal
- Guilt, shame
- Excessive alertness
- Body aches and pains
Untreated trauma can lead to mental health disorders, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, or anxiety disorders. It can also lead to alcohol or substance use disorders if teens try to self-medicate as a way to cope with their trauma symptoms.
Effects of Trauma and Substance Use Disorder
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Association (SAMHSA) estimates that approximately 70% of people ages 12 and over have experienced some type of trauma. Approximately 20.3 million people in the same age category have a substance use disorder. Trauma and addiction are linked for several different reasons.
The human brain is highly adaptable. Children’s brains are shaped by the things they see, hear, and experience. These early impressions can affect the way they see the world for the rest of their lives.
Abuse and other traumas can cause abnormalities in the brain structure that affects cognition, behavior, and the normal production of stress hormones. These changes in the brain make adolescents more vulnerable to mental health disorders.
Healing trauma can lower the risk of developing mental health disorders. If a teen’s mental health has already been affected, addressing the trauma is an integral part of treating the mental health concern.
Treating Co-Occurring Issues
When a person is diagnosed with more than one mental health concern, such as trauma-related depression and alcohol use disorder, they are referred to as co-occurring disorders. Treating both conditions is key. Trauma can increase the risk of alcohol misuse, and alcohol misuse can increase feelings of depression.
Healing from trauma is necessary to maintain long-term sobriety. Trauma therapy is commonly included in an overall treatment program for substance use disorder.
Find Healing From Trauma at Foothills at Red Oak Recovery
Teens don’t always share distressing events with their parents. They might feel ashamed or blame themselves for letting something bad happen. If your teen is showing signs of trauma, including substance or alcohol misuse, there is help.
Foothills at Red Oak Recovery offers both trauma treatment and co-occurring disorder treatment for teenage boys who are struggling with more than one mental health concern. Contact Foothills at Red Oak Recovery today at 866.300.5275 for more information about the importance of trauma treatment.