Economic Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

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Economic Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Hypno-psychotherapy Interventions

1 in 4 have PTSD symptoms from financial stress

On Friday 1st of July 2016 Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England stated on the Financial Times that due to the Brexit vote to leave the EU that Britains economy was in a “post traumatic stress disorder situation”.

According to a new study from Payoff one in four have PTSD-like symptoms from financial stress such as stress resulting from homelessness, late payments, stress about paying off outstanding debt, stress resulting from negative financial behaviour and from acute financial stress (AFS).

Considering the state of the economy and the fact that the global economy is imploding with zombie banks, zero interest rates, fiat money not to mention every country is bankrupted and central banks creating money out of nothing, backed by nothing and creating nothing.

Many are overwhelmed by stagnant incomes, non-existent savings, rising debt levels, high taxes and financial ordeals such as bankruptcy, defaults and eviction.

Capitalism Without Capital

When government controls all wealth and the central banks are involved in quantitative easing, buying not only government bonds but corporate bonds also. This of course is ‘capitalism without capital’, a new concept engineered by the central bankers to bring about a new world order in finance. Its only a matter of time when the central bankers (private banking system) will own all of our assets. The majority of people are completely oblivious to this coup d’etat of our monetary system and the resulting consequences which of course is financial stress all around.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder of the Economic Kind

PTSD is often accompanied by depression and in the most serious cases, a genuine risk of suicide. Like people with any other mental illness, people with PTSD will probably also tend to abuse alcohol or other drugs. Hypno-psychotherapists see this abuse as an attempt at self-medication that does not remedy anything in the long term.

Behavioural/Cognitive Therapies and Hypno-psychotherapy can alleviate the symptoms experienced by people who have PTSD. These forms of therapy often involve a process of desensitization, in which the patient is exposed to memories of the traumatic event in the secure setting of the therapists office. This process can help the patient to feel less afraid and eventually to manage his or her fears more effectively.

PTSD sometimes resolves itself over time even without treatment. Thus, in a sense, the purpose of the psychotherapy is to accelerate this natural process of forgetting.

Intrusion Symptoms

When PTSD sufferers manifest intrusion symptoms, they do not simply experience memories of the traumatic event – they cannot stop their memories from coming back to haunt them. Some of these people experience veritable flashbacks so invasive that it feels as if they are literally reliving the event. Nightmares are another form of intrusion symptom.

Avoidance Symptoms

When PTSD sufferers show avoidance symptoms, they try to avoid conditions and situations that might trigger memories of the traumatic event. They also tend to avoid talking about this event, so that they do not have to confront it directly. Another avoidance symptom is a dulling of the emotions, sometimes so extreme that these individuals become emotionally deadened. They lose interest in activities that they used to love, stay away from friends and family and turn inwards on themselves.
Overstimulation Symptoms

People with PTSD may experience many symptoms of hypervigilance that make it hard for them to concentrate and to finish the activities that they start. More specifically, these people may: experience insomnia and nervousness, tend to become frightened easily, have a constant sense of danger or imminent disaster, be highly irritable, and even engage in violent behaviour.

It was long thought that people could develop PTSD only if they were involved in disasters such as being in a plane crash, witnessing a homicide, or being trapped in a building that had collapsed in an earthquake or a bombing attack. War is in fact the main cause of PTSD, and in North America, the largest group of PTSD sufferers consists of Vietnam war veterans. Indeed, most of what we know about PTSD comes from studies of combat veterans.

More recently however, the list of events that may cause someone to develop PTSD has been expanded to include such experiences as being raped, being in an automobile accident and economic disasters for both individuals and families.

Treatment with Hypno-psychotherapy

According to the IREBH (International Register of Evidence Based Hypnotherapy), the best practice for treatment is outlined in the book “Function-focused Hypno-psychotherapy” by Peter & Deborah George as follows:

Strategies for Treatment

In 1990 Mervin Smucker, Ph.D, from the Medical College of Wisconsin, created Imagery Rescripting and Reprocessing Therapy (IRRT) for the processing of traumatic experiences. The lists below compare the therapeutic goals established by Dr Smucker and those used in Hypnopsychotherapy

IRRT – Goals

• Decrease physiological arousal
• Eliminate intrusive PTSD symptoms
• Transform traumatic imagery into mastery, self-empowering imagery
• Modify trauma-related beliefs/schemas
• Enhance ability to self-calm, self-nurture and affectively self-regulate
• Enhance linguistic processing by developing a narrative about the traumatic event

Hypno-psychotherapy – Goals

• Calm/relax (self-regulate)
• Suppress rumination STOP/re-direct
• Generate safe haven
• Regress to Trauma and generate Mastery imagery
• Cognitively re-construct
• Enhance Ego Strength & ability to affectively self-regulate anxiety
• Develop a new narrative about the traumatic event(s) and future pace to test for improved anxiety threshold

They are clearly very similar in overall approach but there is advantage in the Hypnotic state in being able to create and use fictional resources to empower self with substantial reality through felt experience.

In the pin-point regression to the trauma the patient is encouraged to recount the event internally at a safe distance with the therapists presence clearly felt via the therapist slowly counting from 1-100 (a most useful technique developed by the Father of PTSD definition – Prof. Frank Ochberg).