Causes of Trauma and Trauma Symptoms

Causes of Trauma and Trauma Symptoms

Whether you are aware of it or not, you may be reacting to trauma in a physical way. If you are currently living with trauma you may be well aware of the trauma symptoms such as aches, pains, physical and emotional discomfort triggered by trauma. Some indicators include-

Disrupted sleep

Irritable stomach

Changes in eating

Anxious thoughts

and more. Even if you think you are coping well, you may not be.

Your Body is Talking to You about the Causes of Trauma and Trauma Symptoms

Causes of Trauma and Trauma Symptoms

Much of what we feel in our bodies is feedback. Pain is an indicator that somethings wrong and needs to be addressed. It’s part of our bodies warning system helping us pay closer attention to what’s going on. Sometimes we are in tune with our bodies and sometimes we aren’t. When we take action, we generally find relief. If not, pain- both physical and emotional, can become chronic and we are none the wiser.

Some of the Causes of Trauma can be subtle of not so subtle. The trauma symptoms may be triggered from a single event, repetitive events, or complex different types of events. The event can be physical, mental, emotional, environmental, and relationship trauma.

Here are some trauma symptoms of the body may be trying to deal with trauma and steps to take.

You’ve gained or lost weight quickly- Our eating is often disrupted as a traumatic response from trauma symptoms. From eating too little or too much, we may be coping with trauma through our diet. Left unchecked this can lead to eating disorders including obesity, anorexia, binging and purging and more.

If you recognize that you are experiencing significant changes in your eating (or have a long history with disrupted eating) it’s a clue you may need support. Consult your healthcare provider and share your trauma history so they can help.

Read Also: Trauma Response, Childhood Trauma, and Your Doctors Check Ups

You sleep too much or not at all- Our sleep/wake cycle is more important than most people realize. Our bodies use our rest time to heal, rejuvenate, and prepare for daily life. From healing our cells to storing our memories, our bodies are working in wonderful ways as we sleep. A typical trauma response and trauma symptoms can present itself as insomnia or hypersomnia, both of which have significant consequences to our health.

If you are sleeping too much (hypersomnia) you may be experiencing depression or having another reaction to trauma symptoms. Little to no sleep (insomnia) may also be triggered by anxiety, intrusive, thoughts, and more. Meditation apps, structured bedtime routines, and cutting caffeine prior to bed can help. Your healthcare provider will also have options available but needs to know about any trauma that could be influencing your sleep.

Listen to your body and pay close attention to what it’s sharing. Subtle or acute changes may be an indication you are reacting to trauma. From sleeplessness following an accident or acute illness to life-long food addictions, your body is offering clues that you may need help to cope and overcome trauma.

Trauma Response

Trauma Response, Childhood Trauma, and Your Doctors Check Ups

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The old adage encourages each of us to take action whenever possible to prevent illness, injury, or disease. It’s timeless advice that can keep us safe and healthy. Routine health checkups help our healthcare providers get a baseline of our health, including our physical and mental history, so they can monitor our care over time. Many allopathic doctors are not trained to assess your mental, as ell as emotional health from the impact of childhood trauma. Therefore they often are not aware of various trauma response. Holistic Doctors are trained in various aspects of the human to include mental, emotional, as well as physical impacts of trauma response.


Don’t Wait to be Asked about Childhood Trauma

Now more than ever, healthcare providers are tuning into mental health issues that present as physical illness based on trauma response. We’ve all completed paperwork reporting our health history including what illnesses, injuries, or familial histories might affect our health. Be sure to include any childhood trauma experiences in your history.
Don’t be afraid to share childhood trauma history with your holistic doctor, even if they don’t include it on their intake. Knowing about traumatic experiences you’ve dealt with can help them offer you preventative care as well as make better decisions about current treatments as well as helping the impact of trauma response on the body.

Trauma Response

Some key trauma’s worth reporting include-

Accidents or acute illnesses

Abuse or neglect

Domestic violence


Significant losses

Familial histories of alcohol or drug abuse

Any of these or other childhood trauma can help your holistic doctor better understand what influences could be affecting your overall health.


Discuss Coping Skills with Your Holistic Doctor Too

Everyone deals with stress in their own way. Coping skills are conscious and subconscious strategies people use to manage difficult things. What causes trauma for one person may not affect another in the same way. Similarly, what one person does to cope, may look nothing like what someone else does. Reporting your typical coping skills to your holistic doctor can help them identify dangerous coping skills or connect the dots between your health and the coping skills you may engage in. For instance, drug, alcohol, or food are often used as coping skills for trauma response. That means addictions and obesity may be connected to childhood trauma and require a specific type of support.

Read Also: Emotional Trauma and the Connection with your Physical Health

Take a Team Approach to Your Health Care

Having a primary care physician is common, but you may need more providers on your team such as a holistic doctor. If you’ve experienced childhood trauma of any kind, singularly or repeated, you may benefit from including a holistic doctor on your team that has diverse training. Working with multiple types of providers can actually increase the quality of your care and oftentimes prevent manifestations of physical illness in your body.

Your history greatly impacts today and tomorrow. Be confident in sharing the past with your healthcare providers, even if you see yourself as a survivor and moved on. The truth is, what happened may affect your health and you deserve to be the healthiest version of yourself as possible. Help your health care provider connect the dots by giving them a full account of your physical and mental health history.

Chronic Pain

Chronic Pain Causes May Have a Psychological Origin

Traumatic experiences leave their mark on the mind and the body leaving a person feeling broken. Experiencing trauma, whether it’s one time, or repeatedly, changes how the brain reacts to stress. Our bodies produce hormones that help deal with temporary stress. Over production of these hormones can keep the body in a state of hypervigilance that results in aches and pains throughout the body which can be one of the chronic pain cause. Some, but not all pain could include-

  • Muscle pain
  • Digestive pain
  • Chronic headaches
  • PMS in women
  • Joint pain

Studies linking chronic pain and trauma indicate that it’s possible that our bodies can react to single and repeated incidents of trauma long after the acuity or safety issues are gone. It is normal for someone to feel broken, with current aches and pains possibly may be rooted in past trauma.

Chronic Pain

Feeling Broken with Childhood Trauma and Chronic Pain Cause

The ACE, or Adverse Childhood Experiences, study was a partnership between the Centers for Disease Control and Keiser Permanente hospital to determine whether abuse, neglect, and loss during childhood could indicate risk factors for mental and physical illness in adulthood. The study identified categories of abuse, neglect, and loss and determined that the higher the number of traumatic experiences, the higher the likelihood of illness down the line. Data revealed an alarmingly high correlation between childhood trauma and a host of diseases, addictions, and illnesses including a link to chronic pain cause.

Read Also: How Does Isolation Effect Psychology of The Human Brain

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Chronic Pain Cause

Many people think of veterans when they hear the term post-traumatic stress disorder, also known as PTSD, but military personnel are not the only ones who experience this disorder. PTSD occurs in people who have difficulty recovering from a traumatic, terrifying, or life-threatening event who often have a feeling broken. PTSD affects all races, genders, and age groups. Moreover, PTSD can lead to chronic issues including nightmares, intrusive thoughts or memories, isolating behaviors, depression and much more. Chronic pain cause is often associate with PTSD resulting from tension, over production of stress hormones, and other factors.


Your Chronic Pain Cause My be Originating from your Feeling Broken

Over 50 million people per year live with chronic pain. Most of them seek relief from their medical provider who is focused on their bodies. As a matter of fact, being told a pain is all in your head is considered an insult, but it’s possibly true. More and more physicians are looking beyond the possible physical triggers for pain and including the psychological origins too including feeling broken. If you have experienced trauma, even if it was long ago, you may be reacting physically to something psychological. We are able to help support you in your trauma, and help to balance the mental, physical, as well as emotional stress.

Trauma, Anxiety, Stress and Digestive Issues

Trauma, Anxiety, Stress and Digestive Issues

Have you ever been scared, worried, or looking back on something in the past and started to feel queasy or worse, have to head for the bathroom? It’s amazing how our bodies can be triggered by our thoughts isn’t it? Research shows that four out of ten people suffer from some sort of gastrointestinal issues including everything from lactose intolerance, to IBS. Anxiety and digestive issues are commonly linked. If a person has stress and digestive issues, they will often suffer from anxiety.

Your Anxiety and Digestive Issues May be Caused by What You’re Eating

Everyone experiences digestive issues from time to time. Eating the wrong thing can cause momentary distress and for some, allergies can cause chronic illnesses that must be managed for a lifetime. Some of the common digestive disorders include

Gastroesophageal reflux or GERD

Chronic Diarrhea

Chronic Constipation




Over 73,000 people seek attention from their physician every year to manage these and other digestive issues. For many, changing their diet can reduce or eliminate the symptoms or presence of certain diseases, but what happens when diet changes don’t help? Often times unfortunately stress and digestive issues are often interrelated as people who experience stress either eat unhealthy things or they stop eating which can slow their metabolism.

Trauma, Anxiety, Stress and Digestive Issues

Your Stress and Digestive Issues May NOT be Caused by What You’re Eating

People who have suffered, or are living with trauma, often experience the same digestive issues, but their diet isn’t the culprit. That’s because some physical issues aren’t the result of a medical condition. They may be caused by tension in the body. Most often, the gut.

Our gut and our brain are connected. The gut includes the mouth, esophagus, stomach and intestines. When we are nervous, upset, or experiencing stress, our digestive system is often triggered by the brain and begins to experience dis-ease. This can be as mild as feeling sick to our stomach or as intense as cramping. Over time, it can also lead to a host of digestive illnesses. When a person has anxiety and digestive system we often have to deconstruct the stress as well as previous traumas that the person may have experienced. As these can be clues as to how a person copes with trauma as well as stress.

Read Also: Whats a Holistic Doctor and Why Do You Choose Them

You Can Help Tame Your Stress and Digestive Issues By Using these Tips

If you have no medical reason for digestive issues it may mean your body is reacting to stress and trauma. The good news is there are many things you can do within your control that tame your digestive system. Try these out-

Use Your Breath: Breathing is a powerful way to regulate your mind and body. You can help relax your mind and nervous system and allow your body to settle through deep breathing. You can accomplish this by taking a walk, lying down and meditating, or closing your eyes for a few minutes which can help with stress and digestive issues.

Change the Scenery: One of the easiest ways to disrupt nervousness is to change the scenery. If you are inside, get outside. If you are in the car, stop and take a brisk walk. Breaking up the scenery can help distract the mind and the body’s reaction to traumatic thoughts. This can allow for the mind and the body to rest.

Choose Foods Wisely: Even if there is no medical explanation for your stress and digestive issues, what you eat still matters. Choosing healthy foods that promote gut health is an extra layer of protection against pain and upset. Eat a fiber rich diet with plenty of hydrating fruits and vegetables for a stable gut.

Anxiety and digestion issues are incredibly common and it’s possible you are suffering because of what you eat, or it could be what’s eating you. Recognizing the role trauma plays in our bodies can help reduce many digestive issues you may have thought were medical. If you would like to determine the root causes of trauma please reach out to our practice.

emotional trauma

Emotional Trauma and the Connection with your Physical Health

Emotional Trauma is the emotional response resulting from incomprehensible experiences based on various types of trauma. Suffering an attack, surviving an accident, or experiencing a natural disaster isn’t something everyone goes through. It’s not normal or natural to face these types of experiences. When we do, our brains and bodies remain impacted from emotional trauma. What we see, feel, and experience has a direct impact on our minds and our bodies which means trauma and health are very connected.

emotional trauma

Three Types of Trauma

Trauma isn’t limited to a one-off event or accident. There are three main types of trauma.

  1. Acute
  2. Chronic
  3. Complex


Acute trauma: This type of trauma comes from a single incident that is often out of the blue and not typical for the environment. It can include witnessing a trauma, experiencing a trauma, or surviving an accident or illness. The emotional trauma attached to this is shock, grief, denial, and more.


Chronic trauma: This type of trauma is repeated over time and includes issues like domestic violence, homelessness, and other prolonged exposure to dysfunction. This can create more complexity in emotional trauma such as stress, fear responses, uncertainty.


Complex trauma: This represents someone exposed to a variety of traumas including multiple traumatic experiences as well as prolonged traumas combined. This emotional trauma is the most complex as it involves many layers of emotions such as anger, rage, fear, powerlessness, victimhood, snd more.


The Body Keeps the Score

Author Bessel Van Der Kolk, MD published the popular book The Body Keeps the Score illustrating how trauma impacts the body and causes a wide variety of mental and physical problems as well as emotional trauma.

Our bodies are designed to withstand emotional trauma. Our brains are specially hardwired to kick into gear when we face a traumatic experience. Moreover, our brains secrete hormones and send signals to our nervous system that help us act in the face of a threat and keep ourselves safe. But the experiences imprint on our mind too and can cause immediate and long-term issues, including-

  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Anxiety and other mental health disorders
  • Digestive issues and autoimmune diseases
  • Increased risk for stroke or heart attack


You May Not Be Aware of the Impact of the Types of Trauma Has on Your Body

Sometimes a traumatic situation will immediately trigger a response in your body. Witnessing a tragedy or experiencing something traumatic can cause upset stomach, headache, or any number of other symptoms. Other times, your body may protect itself in the moment and seem to disregard what’s happened only to react later on when you may not make the connection. Either way, your body is keenly aware of what’s going on and has a conscious or subconscious reaction. The body is responding to emotional trauma.

People living with chronic or complex trauma may have normalized the sensations in their bodies. And have no awareness of the connection between their illnesses, diseases, or poor health and trauma.

Read Also: Nature Based Therapy – What Exactly Is It?

It’s Time to Connect the Dots

If you haven’t given much thought to your health and how it may be impacted by trauma, it’s time to connect the dots. Taking a look at your personal history and comparing it with your medical history can be eye-opening. Once you recognize a potential connection between your physical health and any emotional trauma you may have experienced (or are experiencing) you can begin to take a holistic approach to healing by looking at all aspects of health and healing to include mental, emotional, and even physical ramifications surrounding your health.