Back to homepage

PTSD and Trauma: How to Feel Safe Again

PTSD and Trauma: How to Feel Safe Again


PTSD and Trauma: How to Feel Safe Again


Any traumatic situation, whether directly experienced or witnessed, can instill fear in most people.  Fear is a natural biological “fight-or-flight” response that aims to protect people from harm or a perceived danger.  It is normal for everyone who has experienced a traumatic event to recover from the initial shock.  Some people may respond with only temporary difficulties, while others, may develop Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD; a condition wherein an affected individual may continue to feel stressed or frightened, even in the absence of the danger.


Living with Unsafe Feelings

PTSD is an emotional phenomenon that can happen to anyone, at any age. According to the National Center for PTSD, PTSD can develop in about 7 or 8 out of 100 people at some point in their lives, with women being more vulnerable to it than men. To a survivor of trauma, PTSD can create a confusing world by replacing feelings of safety with a sense of fear and anxiety. Even without going through a danger, the world goes from safe to unsafe after experiencing certain traumatic events such as the death of a loved one.

Like other psychological health issues, PTSD may develop due to a complex mix of factors, including stressful experiences, an inherited family history of anxiety and depression, inherent temperament, and the ability of the brain to regulate the chemicals and hormones released by the body when responding to stress. PTSD removes the feeling of safety and replaces it with thoughts and feelings of imminent danger and you are not free from harm.

The symptoms of PTSD manifest in four types; grouped as intrusive memories, negative changes in thoughts and mood, changes in physical and emotional reactions, and avoidance. A person with PTSD lives with the relentless reminder of the trauma in varying forms, such as flashbacks, recurring distressing memories, or upsetting nightmares. The anxious thoughts may contribute to the feeling of hopelessness, concentration and memory problems, detachment from family and friends, and emotional numbness.

The unsafe feelings created by PTSD can cause you to become insecure, especially in terms of maintaining a relationship. The arousal symptoms are easy to recognize; they are self-destructive behavior, irritability, angry outbursts, and a constant on-guard stance for potential danger. The feeling of being unsafe may cause a person with PTSD to avoid talking or thinking about the traumatic experience, shun certain places or activities, and avoid people they associate with the trauma, as a way of shutting his or her own self down from any painful reminders.


Creating a Safety Plan

If the reminder of the trauma persistently stays with you, the symptoms of PTSD can vary in types and intensity. For example, any red car you come across can bring back vivid memories of your near-fatal accident. Or a thunderous sound causes you relive your combat experiences. These symptoms can profoundly affect your relationships or work, and interfere with your normal functioning.

If the disturbing thoughts and feelings about a traumatic event constantly accompany you for more than a month, it would be beneficial to be assessed by a professional. It is time to let go and move on with your life free from the unsafe thoughts shaped by PTSD. Seeking early treatment is definitely the right decision, rather than allowing yourself to dwell in your traumatic past and to be completely consumed by it.

Remember when you sought solitude away from your loved ones and had difficulty getting along with others?  Wasn’t it lonely and didn’t it only make you feel more unsafe?  Rather than withdrawing from the rest of the world, doesn’t it make more sense to seek help from a capable professional to improve the quality of your life and relationships?


Reclaiming Control to Establish Safety

If a traumatic event makes you feel unsafe, so much so, that it becomes difficult for you to get back to your regular life, it is important to seek help from a licensed professional to rule out PTSD.  The symptoms of this condition can cause you to live with fear, anxiety and the constant expectation of danger. The condition can be difficult to manage on your own. Fortunately, there are effective treatments available for people like you who are hounded by negative thoughts and feelings formed by PTSD.

A traumatizing experience complicated by PTSD justifies the reason for getting counseling. The unsafe feelings resulting from trauma may hinder you from taking the first step to help yourself or someone you know. Rather than allowing the trauma and its reminders to haunt you, be courageous and get help. Getting treatment for PTSD is your way of fighting back and regaining your sense of control over the powerful hold of the trauma in your life.

Feel safe again. Get help from the right fit trauma therapist independently contracted with Caroline Counseling Services – Pinehurst, NC. Although it may take some time, help is available. Call CCS – Pinehurst today to schedule an appointment.


Related Articles:


Serving Areas: Carolina Counseling Services – Pinehurst, NC

Counties: Moore county, NC, Lee County, Hoke County, Chatham County

Areas: Pinehurst NC, West End NC, Taylortown NC, Seven Lakes NC, Eagle Springs NC, Jackson Springs NC, Foxfire NC, Candor NC, Norman NC, Ellerbe NC, Rockingham NC

Zip Codes: 27281, 27376, 28315, 28347, 28350, 28373, 28374, 28387, 28388, 28394

Kelly ErkenBrack, LCSW

Specializes in: (Ages 3+) Children, Teens, Adults, Couples and Families. Anxiety, Depression, Grief and Loss, Mood Disorders, Trauma, Adjustments and Life Transitions, ADHD, Behavioral Issues, Parenting, Relationship Concerns, Self Esteem
Insurance: BCBSTricare Prime/Select, Medicare and Cash
Credit Cards:  
Location: Pinehurst, NC

Robin Caswell, MSW, LCSW

Specializes in: (Ages 5+), Individuals, Adults, Anxiety, Depression, Grief, Loss, ADHD, ODD, Trauma/PTSD, LGBTQ, Self-Harm, Military Family Life, Mood Disorders, OCD, Phobias
Insurance: BCBS, Tricare, Medicare and Cash
Credit Cards:  
Location: Pinehurst, NC

Counseling Information

How Do I Set Up my FIRST Appointment?

  • Call: 910-420-3600 (Fastest way to schedule)
  • Text: (910) 308-3291 (Reply will be via phone)
  • Click here and use our Contact Form (You must include your phone number, because replies will only be made by telephone to ensure security/privacy)
  • Call or Text for your New Patient Appointment Anytime!
  • Appointment scheduling for NEW clients: Mon-Fri 8:30am-5pm
  • Established/Standing Appointments are made directly with your therapist!
  • Referrals: MOST beneficiaries do NOT need a Referral!

Other Contact Info

If you have a compliment, concern or comments please contact:

Contact Management: click here

If you need to speak specifically to the owner Click here and use our Contact Form

Carolina Counseling Services – Pinehurst, NC

45 Dowd Circle Suite 5
PinehurstNC 28374

Our Mailing Address:

PO BOX 9909
Fayetteville, NC 28311