Trauma is the mind and body’s response to a distressing event or experience that is overwhelming to cope with, and often creates feelings of powerlessness. Trauma is not the event itself but a person’s subjective experience of the event. This is why two people can experience the same thing, but only one person experiences a trauma reaction.
One of the most common trauma-related disorders is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), but there are also other forms.

If you have experienced a traumatic event or want to understand more about trauma, Monarch Psychology is here to help:

Symptoms of PTSD and Trauma

Everyone reacts to trauma in different ways and can experience a wide range of emotional and physical symptoms.

These are the most common symptoms of PTSD and trauma:


  • Shock, disbelief, or denial
  • Difficulty concentrating and confusion
  • Anxiety and fear
  • Anger, irritability, and mood swings
  • Guilt, shame, and self-blame
  • Withdrawing from others
  • Feelings of sadness and hopelessness
  • Feeling numb or disconnected
  • Physical symptoms such as insomnia, nightmares, being easily startled, racing heart, aches and pain, and feelings of edginess.
  • Difficulties in relationships: difficulty feeling secure and trusting, people pleasing behaviours, fear of abandonment, difficulty with intimacy, difficulty being seen, increased conflict.


In some cases, symptoms may be short lived and may resolve a few days or weeks after a distressing event or experience.

However, if your symptoms persist or become worse, it may be time to speak with a professional to explore your situation and challenges.

Types of Trauma

Trauma comes in many forms. Here are the most common types of trauma:

PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder)

PTSD is a psychological disorder that results from exposure to intense harm or threats to safety.

To receive a diagnosis of PTSD, specific symptoms must be present such as intrusive thoughts and memories about the event.

PTSD can result from a single incident, such as a motor vehicle accident, an assault, or the death of a loved one.

It can also occur due to cumulative trauma over time.

Complex Trauma

Complex trauma is the result of repetitive harm, usually within a relationship and often with a caregiver or romantic partner.

It typically involves a betrayal of trust within a relationship and can lead to a more complicated form of PTSD known as Complex PTSD.

Developmental Trauma

Developmental trauma is a specific type of complex trauma that results from abuse, neglect, or abandonment early in life and disrupts neurological, cognitive, and psychological development. It often results in significant disruption to emotional and relational functioning later in life.

Is There a Difference Between Trauma and PTSD?

PTSD is a specific type of trauma-related disorder with specific diagnostic criteria. However, many people that do not meet the specific criteria for PTSD have significant struggles with trauma-related symptoms. Both groups can benefit from trauma counselling.

Counselling Methods for PTSD and Trauma in Calgary

The specific treatment used for trauma depends on each person’s specific experiences, symptoms, and preferences.


Treatments focus on resolving the unpleasant feelings and memories that have been avoided.


Counselling methods for PTSD and trauma also include discharging pent-up “fight-or-flight” energy, learning how to regulate strong emotions, unlearning unhealthy patterns and relearning new healthy ones, and building your self-esteem and your ability to trust other people.


Monarch Psychology utilizes several modalities in the treatment of trauma, including EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) and ART (Accelerated Resolution Therapy).


Overall, our goal is to find the best counselling method for your unique challenges and situation!


We offer individual counseling both in-person and online with a free 15-minute phone consultation.


Contact us today for more information.