To attain balance one must understand how each aspect connects with the others, the goal of being healthy is attained by facing issues concerning all aspects of the self. For example, physical distress affects how we feel, think, and what we embrace, and as such it needs to be recognized as interrelated and addressed in a holistic manner. An Aboriginal healing journey can involve spiritual healing like: Many Aboriginal perspectives consider spirituality a vital part of healing and an increasing number of Aboriginal peoples are returning to traditional ways of healing.
As social workers, we work with populations with long and complex histories of abuse and violence combined with pressing physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual needs. Even when we are not serving the most vulnerable, we still may be working with people who have endured a traumatic event, which has affected their lives and their well-being.
Although trauma and trauma informed care are complicated, understanding them better enables social workers to care for the needs of their clients from a deeply holistic perspective. Thus, the intent of this article is to describe the basics of trauma, trauma informed care, and applying trauma informed care in practice and policy settings.
Certainly not an exhaustive guide to trauma informed care, this is an overview intended to introduce this subject and stimulate interest in it. The Nature of Trauma A traumatic event is an experience in which individuals fear for their lives or the lives of those close to them American Psychiatric Association, Traumatic experiences can be experienced directly, or indirectly by witnessing the trauma of another.
In this manner, seeing an act of violence against someone else may be traumatic. For example, an event that occurs frequently and involves a close family member, such as sexual abuse, will have a different outcome than an event that someone saw once and did not involve anyone known to that person, such as a car accident.
Additionally, traumatic events that occur at younger ages are thought to have more upsetting effects, as they co-occur with brain and social skill development Schore, Finally, existing risks addiction and mental illness, most importantlyalong with the presence of a social support system, must be taken into account when understanding why traumatic events affect people differently.
Traumatic symptoms can range from mild to debilitating. Traumatic symptoms are highly individualized and, as a result, can manifest in a multitude of ways. The outcomes of trauma often affect mental functioning, social interactions, and coping mechanisms. Depression and anxiety are common, as well as difficulty eating, sleeping, parenting, and working.
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In addition, it is not uncommon for someone to experience flashbacks or dreams of the event s intrusion or to report that they feel easily startled hypervigilance by stimuli in their surroundings.
Some people may notice that they are dulled to what is going on around them during routine daily activities dissociation. Finally, people with trauma symptoms are prone to social isolation. These individuals attempt to control their surroundings preemptively by evading any person, place, or thing that might serve as a reminder of the trauma avoidance.
Together, these four categories of symptoms not only take away from quality of life, but also make daily interaction and communication difficult.
Further, those with trauma histories are at an increased risk for addiction, substance use, and other risky behaviors, such as promiscuous sex and illegal activity.
It is thought that these symptoms are side effects of traumatic exposure. These behaviors are thought to be ways of learned coping to compensate for a traumatic past.
As social workers, we need to address and treat the underlying cause the trauma first and then treat the other issues that present substance use, risky behavior, unemployment, or anxiety. This approach reframes the idea of the presenting problem in that the issues we deem as target behaviors may not really be what the client wants to change.
This approach does not get to the root cause of the problem and may do more harm than good, as a result. The key component to understanding trauma is that it is both preventable and treatable Herman, This is where the role of social workers comes in—acting as change agents to directly influence the lives of those who have endured traumatic events.
TIC causes a shift in thinking about how we view people and social problems and can be added to any existing therapy. TIC, at its core, seeks to understand human behavior, coping mechanisms both positive and negativeand any problems that result by examining traumatic events throughout life.
Trauma exposure alone is a risk factor for future traumatic events. By default, then, TIC is a preventive approach. Through the systematic screening and treatment of trauma, it is thought that future traumatic events may be avoided.
Trauma screening can occur at the primary populationsecondary at riskand tertiary already exposed levels without extra resources or personnel. Apart from being preventive, TIC is inherently strengths-based, as the first principle is that of doing no harm to the client.
Those operating from a trauma informed perspective view a client as a unique individual with all the tools necessary to regain healthy functioning. TIC often requires a degree of practice and training that extends past the social worker-client relationship.by Elisa Kawam, Ph.D., and Marcos J. Martinez, Ph.D.
As social workers, we work with populations with long and complex histories of abuse and violence combined with pressing physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual needs. In generalist social work practice client system assessment is an ongoing social work skill used with all intervention levels and throughout the client intervention process.
Suppes and Wells name five “levels of intervention” the individual, family, group, organization and community levels (). PSYCHOSOCIAL ASSESSMENTEXAMPLEEXAMPLEEXAMPLE 6 Client’s Personal Values and Attitudes Being a homosexual male, Stan prefers to work with a female therapist to avoid any. I can understand the main points of clear standard speech on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc.
I can understand the main point of many radio or TV programmes on current affairs or topics of personal or professional interest when the delivery is relatively slow and clear.
Social work is an academic discipline and profession that concerns itself with individuals, families, groups and communities in an effort to enhance social functioning and overall well-being. Social functioning refers to the way in which people perform their social roles, and the structural institutions that are provided to sustain them.
Social work applies social sciences, such as sociology. Assessment in social work Strength-based Assessment Strength based assessment is a tool that focuses on people's strengths rather than their problems, with an aim to move away from categorising the person as the problem and to focus on their strengths and resilience by empowering the client to be the problem solver.
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