International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies

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Articles that appear in the Trauma Blog are from StressPoints or web editorial contributions.

StressPoints is the award-winning online eNewsletter of ISTSS. StressPoints shares news and opinions about traumatic stress, highlights ISTSS and affiliate societies' activities and offers informational resources and feature articles of interest to the field. Access archived StressPoints articles prior to 2015.

What determines posttraumatic stress and growth following various traumatic events? A study in a Turkish community sample

Posted 28 January 2017 in JOTS Highlights by Ervin Gül, PhD & A. Nuray Karanci, PhD

Experiencing traumatic life events, such as natural disasters, accidents, life-threatening illnesses, torture, sexual and/or physical violence, unexpected death of loved ones, terrorist attacks, and many more, are unfortunately quite prevalent in the lifetime of adults. Every experience seems to be a different story, the story being shaped by the individuals’ history, characteristics and the how they cope with the event and the meaning they give to the event. Thus, the psychological consequences of these events may be dissimilar for everyone. 

For Whom Does Time Heal Wounds?

Posted 28 January 2017 in JOTS Highlights by Marianne Skogbrott Birkeland, PhD

Why do two people who experience the same trauma react completely differently? Specifically; Who recovers spontaneously from trauma, and who develops lasting symptoms of posttraumatic stress? For most people, posttraumatic stress symptoms decline gradually during the first year after the traumatic exposure. Nonetheless, a significant number of people exposed to trauma develop posttraumatic stress symptoms that last for years and require support from clinical and public health professionals.

Sleep Disturbances in Adolescent Girls with Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Posted 9 December 2016 in JOTS Highlights by Janeese Brownlow, PhD & Richard Ross, MD, PhD

Disturbed sleep is a core feature of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Sleep disturbances, in the form of chronic insomnia and recurrent nightmares, are a frequent residual complaint after successful PTSD treatment. 

Can sleep enhance the benefits of exposure treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder?

Posted 9 December 2016 in JOTS Highlights by Ihori Kobayashi, PhD & Thomas Mellman, MD

People often say “sleep on it” before making an important decision anticipating that sleep will help them sort through their thoughts and memories, add perspective, thereby leading to a better decision. Can this conventional wisdom be applied to treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)? We addressed this question with a novel approach.

Trauma and World Literature: Studying the Face of Trauma – Toby’s Room

Posted 24 October 2016 in StressPoints by Harold Kudler, MD

Readers of this column will remember Pat Barker as the Booker Prize-winning author of the Regeneration trilogy. Those three historical novels follow the efforts of psychiatrist W. H. R. Rivers and the shell shocked Army Officers under his care at Craiglockhart War Hospital in Scotland to recover from the horrors of the First World War. 

Student Perspectives: Bound

Posted 24 October 2016 in StressPoints by Mavis Ring, MS, MA

We all know boundaries are important. Given that relational patterns of patients in trauma work are more frequently those of intrusion and rejection, assessing the patterns are doubly important. In forensic psychology, these patterns are also doubly complicated.

Military Matters: Grief Responses in U.S. Military Families Following Soldier Loss

Posted 24 October 2016 in StressPoints by Holly B. Herberman Mash, PhD, Joscelyn E. Fisher, PhD, and Alexander G. Liu, MPH

Grief has increasingly become a focus of attention within the military, with 80 percent of redeployed soldiers reporting knowing someone who was seriously injured or killed in theater (Thomas et al., 2010; Toblin et al., 2012). 

Media Matters: Online Safe Spaces for Trauma Survivors: A Helpful Source of Social Support?

Posted 24 October 2016 in StressPoints by Charla Rhodes, BA

A safe space is a place in which individuals can find refuge and protection from insensitivity, discrimination, persecution, and other potentially negative experiences. Debate on the utility of safe spaces at universities grows more controversial as college campuses struggle to address the growing numbers of students calling for their presence. 
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