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Trauma And Stressor Related Disorder

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In the DSM-5, PTSD is listed under Trauma- and Stressor- Related Disorders. In order for a person to be diagnosed with PTSD, they must meet a number of criterion- the first one being exposure to actual or threatened death, serious injury, or sexual violence. If the person does not meet this criterion, they are automatically exempt from being diagnosed with PTSD. This alone is incredibly restrictive, ignoring many groups of traumatized victims including those with psychiatric diagnosis, or those being removed from their home. Though many people can benefit from the treatments associated with PTSD, its two-dimensionality, or lack of reference to ongoing exposure has created a want for a new diagnosis in the trauma realm. Herman’s response to…show more content…
In creating the opportunity for more individuals to be diagnosed with a post-traumatic syndrome, C-PTSD creates a dignified title for individuals who have already endured so much. Victims of childhood trauma account for a portion of this group. Abused children have to undergo a series of adaptations in order to experience self-preservation. The three major forms of adaptation include elaboration of dissociative defenses, development of fragmented identity, and pathological regulation of emotional states. When a child falls prey to an abuser, they cannot form inner representations of safety. Not only do they become attached to strangers, but they also cling to their abusers. During this time, Herman refers to fragmentation as “becoming the central principle of personality organization”. Normal regulations of emotional states are also disrupted, resulting in dysphoria, chronic anxiety, and chronic depression- which can last into adulthood. Normal regulations of emotional states are also affected by the elaboration of dissociative defenses. When an individual becomes too accustomed to using dissociation as a defense mechanism, they can experience something referred to as “annihilation panic”. When annihilation panic ensues, only extreme shocks to the system (such as self-mutilation) can help them separate themselves from dissociation. Though these adaptations are crucial for
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