Top Unhealthy Coping Mechanisms Due To PTSD

PTSD can give rise to various coping mechanisms. These are classified mainly into adaptive and maladaptive. Adaptive coping mechanisms are healthy habits and behaviors that reduce stress and harm. In contrast, maladaptive coping mechanisms are unhealthy because they do not seek to solve the issues but are meant to provide only temporary relief. 

Maladaptive coping mechanisms can play tricks on your brain because they may make you feel they are helping. Things that make you feel better temporarily but ruin your health in the long term are unhealthy. If you or your loved one is struggling to cope with an unfortunate event, consult with an expert for post traumatic stress disorder Flowood today. 

Top unhealthy coping mechanisms due to PTSD

  • Isolation. 

An unfortunate or unexpected event can leave one shocked and extremely upset, resulting in isolation. Many people stop talking to or visiting their friends and family to avoid talking about the situation or maybe because they feel constantly annoyed by others. People like this may not want to be surrounded by even their loved ones anymore, pushing them away. 

However, emotional connection is an essential aspect of life, and isolation can be harmful for the long term. 

  • Catastrophizing. 

Predicting the end or conclusion of an event before it actually occurs can seem like a smart move, but it really is not. It is a symptom of an unhealthy coping habit due to a past traumatic event. 

People who catastrophize things in advance are engaging in a self-defense mechanism. They try to assume what happens next and mostly assume the worst. They try to solve a problem that does not exist yet. However, this can make one feel insecure for most of their life. 

  • Avoiding the issue altogether. 

Another unhealthy coping mechanism is pretending that the problem does not exist or refusing to acknowledge its existence by not speaking of it. After all, it makes sense to stay on the surface without thinking about what makes you anxious or worried. However, the more you ignore a problem, the more it comes back later to haunt you. The fear you do not confront strengthens over time and becomes worse. 

  • Relying on others too much. 

While avoidance and isolation are common unhealthy coping strategies, relying too much on your friends, significant other, family, etc., can be harmful as well. Having the support of your loved ones during a bad time is good, but over-relying on others to feel good about yourself can be harmful. You must realize your self-worth even when other people are not available to provide validation. 

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