Physical and mental health care has changed dramatically over the years. The medical profession is increasingly focusing on how they can better engage with patients to improve treatment outcomes. The medical field is continually advancing, and trauma informed care focuses on the assumption that a patient has experienced a traumatic experience in their lives. The goal of trauma informed care is to improve patient engagement and prevent the reemergence of potentially traumatic experiences through improving empathy in healthcare as a whole.
What Is Trauma Informed Care?
The easiest way to look at trauma informed care is about shifting the focus from “What’s wrong with you?” to “What happened to you?” Trauma informed treatments deliver better care outcomes because the emphasis is on building up a better image of a patient’s past and current life situation. Care is orientated towards long-term healing.
The goal of trauma informed care is to better understand trauma recovery, recognizing the signs of trauma, and integrating knowledge of trauma into how care providers deliver their services. Finally, trauma informed care prioritizes the avoidance of re-traumatization in patients.
Top Benefits of a Trauma Informed Care Program
Trauma informed care should not be viewed as a specific medical treatment. The advantages of trauma informed care can be extended to patients, medical professionals, and organizations as a whole. It is a philosophy that can be extended beyond the hospital and the doctor’s office. This is why trauma informed care is considered to be a revolution in the way care is delivered.
Sense of Safety in Patients
Trauma informed care is designed to create a sense of safety in patients. In other words, patients are made to feel safe physically and mentally in any environment where they are present. In practice, this can involve making a patient waiting room more welcoming. Instead of providing long rows of seats, patients may feel safer if they can sit separately from others and be alone. Creating this sense of safety in patients increases the chances of people engaging with their treatment and being more willing to share their experiences with their healthcare providers.
Actively Avoids Re-Traumatization
Through adopting trauma informed care as a core approach to healthcare, care providers can work to actively avoid re-traumatization. There are many ways re-traumatization occurs. For example, forcing people to retell their stories over and over again and pushing them to open up are both types of re-traumatization.
Re-traumatization often makes the situation worse and can cause serious mental health problems, such as severe anxiety and clinical depression. Incidences of re-traumatization also make it less likely people will seek out the help they need in a healthcare setting. Trauma informed care seeks to actively avoid this.
Empowers the Patient
Patient empowerment allows the patient to feel as if they are in control of their treatment. Rather than being told by a doctor what they should or should not do, care shifts from a paternalistic approach to a collaborative one.
This collaborative approach is critical because it fulfills another principle of trauma informed care, and that is patient choice. Giving patients power over their decisions is a powerful motivator for patients who may have believed there is no potential for healing that trauma.
In many ways, patient empowerment offers patients control over their own lives which they may have felt is something they have lacked. There is no doubt patient empowerment leads to better engagement with both care providers and any prescribed treatments. Ultimately, this means healthcare professionals can do more to support their patients.
Peer Support Resources
One of the difficulties people have if they have experienced something traumatic is that they feel alone. They feel different from everyone else, and so many people with trauma tend to hide this in order to fit in. Trauma informed care can be utilized in a practical setting. It brings individuals with shared experiences together and integrates them into the organization. They are made to feel essential to an organization’s ability to operate.
That level of peer support enables patients to feel part of something greater than themselves. It avoids making trauma sufferers feel as if they are “broken” and different from everyone else around them. Peer support is a principle of trauma informed care which turns philosophy into something practical and relevant to the wider world.
Consider Trauma Informed Care With Aquila Recovery Clinic
Trauma informed care has enabled healthcare providers, employers, and communities to make great strides in supporting those who have gone through traumatic experiences. It has changed the face of modern healthcare and now extends to countless fields of care. If you are someone who has gone through a traumatic experience, consider seeking out trauma informed care. Contact Aquila Recovery Clinic to find out more about how trauma informed care can help and support you. Call us at (202) 618-9125 or contact us online to get started today.