Why Are Some People More Susceptible to the Effects of Trauma?

The effects of trauma change everyone differently. Whether someone comes home from war, experiences a car accident, or relationship abuse, each person is unique and will respond differently. If you or someone you love needs help recovering from trauma, contact us at 17135283709 to learn more about our dual diagnosis programs.

Why Are Some People Susceptible to Trauma Effects?

Maybe you’re wondering why are some people susceptible to trauma effects. Without knowing each person’s physiological and psychological history, one answer might lie in neuropeptide Y (NPY), which is a 36-amino-acid peptide transmitter that works in forebrain limbic and brain stem areas. The purpose of these components of the brain is to control stress and emotionally stimulated behaviors. When someone has minimal amounts of this chemical in the brain, they are more inclined to respond negatively to the same stimuli as someone with an adequate quantity.

Additionally, suppose someone didn’t know healthy and functional coping skills to face these challenges. In that case, the likelihood increases that the trauma could become even more entrenched, thus perpetuating the cycle. Stress hormones such as adrenaline, cortisol, and norepinephrine kick the body and brain into high gear in response to trauma, while NPY dials down the reaction and helps the person to cope.

Some reasons people are more susceptible to trauma outside of NPY include:

  • Lack of support
  • Complex early life traumas such as familial abuse
  • Dismissal and lack of help early in their experiences
  • Lack of financial resources or a need to financially survive post-trauma

Unfortunately, these are not the only reasons but can be a starting point for recovery. It’s not your fault something traumatic happened, and your situation is also not your fault. However, there are ways to heal, and it’s worth it.

Does Learned Resilience Play a Part in Side Effects of Trauma?

The American Psychological Association defines resilience as “the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or significant sources of stress, such as family and relationship problems, serious health problems or workplace and financial stressors. It means “bouncing back” from difficult experiences.”

Qualities of Resilient People

Qualities of resilient people include:

  • An optimistic attitude that things will work in their favor
  • An ability to rebound from daily challenges
  • A willingness to seek personal and professional support in the face of stressors
  • A belief in their own skills and abilities to do what is necessary
  • A conviction that since they survived the original incident, they will manage the aftermath
  • A world view that looks for possibility rather than peril
  • More than adequate social supports in their daily lives
  • A toolkit of self-care habits
  • A means of refraining from identifying themselves as victims and instead as thrivers
  • A willingness to surrender control of outcomes
  • A sense of humor

You don’t have to be born with these to understand and learn them. Many people who begin their lives in complex trauma don’t have these skills, and that’s okay. It can take time to learn these things, but they can be worth it to construct a meaningful, peaceful life.

Helping the Side Effects of Trauma with Right Step

Even if you are unable to identify many of these traits in your own life, it is possible to learn resilience by surrounding yourself with hardy people, reading books on the topic, and having a sense of purpose. It can take time to find a sense of purpose, but it is worth the effort.

Additionally, healthy eating habits, exercise, and spending time in nature and with those who love you can provide more robust resiliency muscles. Refraining from turning to substances to cope is, of course, in order as well.

If you struggle with substance abuse due to trauma, we can help. At Right Step, we treat a variety of addictions with a combination of holistic and evidence-based therapies, such as:

  • Trauma therapy
  • Family therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Holistic therapy

To learn more about your treatment options or how to help people who are susceptible to the effects of trauma, call 17135283709 today.

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