How to Manage Your Unresolved Trauma

Man talking to his therapist about ways to manage your unresolved trauma

Have you not been feeling yourself lately but are not sure what's wrong? Do you find yourself irritable, worried, or on high alert nearly all of the time? Do you find yourself feeling angry when interacting with people but can't think of a reason why? Is it becoming increasingly difficult to manage the stress of everyday life? What you're feeling could result from the volatile times we live in. However, there could be more to it, and it's possible you have unresolved trauma. But what does that mean, and how can you respond? That's what we're here to help you with. This article will help you manage your unresolved trauma and reveal simple ways to cope with it.

Unresolved trauma - what is it, and how to manage it?

Simply put, trauma is a scary, upsetting, and distressing experience. Many situations and circumstances can be traumatic; however, the way people perceive them is different. This means that two people can experience the same event, with only one of them ending up traumatized. So it's important to remember that trauma experiences are unique and personal, which makes defining trauma more difficult.

Woman with red nails holding her hands over her face while crying
Even if a person isn't aware of their trauma, some signs will show up in their daily lives.

Even though a horrible period in a person's life may pass, certain occurrences might leave an indelible mark on their minds. That person has to live with the trauma and goes through physical and mental changes as a result of it. Unresolved trauma can cause extreme stress, which can cause a slew of issues for the individual living with it.

Worst of all, in extreme situations, people develop a sense of insecurity, making it difficult for them to live a regular life. They develop huge trust issues and begin to prefer seclusion, which is not a good idea for mental health. So if you don't find ways to manage your unresolved trauma, it can end up eating you alive.

Most common symptoms of unresolved trauma

Even if a person isn't aware of their unresolved trauma, some symptoms will become apparent in their daily lives. The following are some of the most typical symptoms of unresolved trauma:

  • Feeling anger without rational explanation.

  • Experiencing flashbacks or reoccurring memories.

  • Higher levels of irritability and agitation.

  • Anxiety and/or panic attacks.

  • Experiencing trouble with falling asleep.

  • When you do fall asleep, you experience nightmares or night sweats.

  • Feeling jumpy and in a constant state of alert.

  • Muscle tension and increased heart rate.

  • Lower ability to focus.

  • Mood swings and, in most cases, withdrawal from others or activities that you usually enjoy doing.

An upset person looking at a laptop and holding her glasses
If you're feeling anxious, jumpy, and angry for no apparent reason, it could be you're dealing with unresolved trauma.

If the early signs are left untreated, things can get severe. For instance, unresolved trauma can lead to severe anxiety and depression. It can even make you turn to drugs and alcohol to feel better. In fact, the team from Bright Futures Treatment Center claims that addiction and unresolved trauma are closely related. One usually results as a consequence of the other.

Simple ways to help you manage unresolved trauma

If your symptoms match the ones we've listed above, you may be dealing with unresolved trauma. So further in this article, we'll reveal simple ways to cope with it.

Eat healthy and exercise

One of the best ways to cope with stress and trauma is to exercise. When we exercise, our body releases the "feel-good" chemical called endorphin, instantly improving our mood.

Keep in mind that what you eat and drink can have adverse effects and enhance the symptoms you're experiencing. Therefore, it's essential to eat a well-balanced, healthy diet and avoid drugs and alcohol.

Reach out to your friends and family

Many people discover that talking about your experience rather than burying it has numerous advantages. For example, you could go for a walk outside with a friend and talk. Or, you can go a step further - get in touch and try to reconnect with your old friends.

Don't avoid social activities, either. Experiencing unresolved trauma usually means feeling isolated and alone. Thus, it's essential to break this cycle and, if needed, even force yourself to say yes to different social activities. Go bowling, attend a fancy event, or go to a neighborhood barbecue - whatever you enjoy doing.

Do yoga and meditate

Different studies show that yoga and meditation help with reducing symptoms of trauma. Doing yoga is an excellent exercise for your body, too. On the other hand, the ability to calm your mind and allow thoughts to come and go without judgment can help lessen tension and anxiety. Meditation can also help you with emotional regulation.

Don't be afraid to ask for professional help

Lastly, don't be scared of racing out to experienced mental-health experts to help you cope with different life challenges. Sometimes, even our best efforts aren't enough to manage and fight the symptoms of unresolved trauma.

 Five members of a support group in a room sitting on chairs
Research local support groups, and we're sure you'll find a place where you can find help and eventually learn how to manage your unresolved trauma.

However, choosing the right mental health consultant can be tricky and is not a decision you should rush. Instead, do your research online and ask your friends or relatives if they have any recommendations. Finding the right person to be your ally through this process is crucial for it to be successful.

Unresolved trauma - don't ignore the symptoms, manage them!

Sometimes, figuring out and acknowledging that you have an unresolved trauma is the most challenging part, and it means you're on a good way to learning to manage it. However, remember that recovering from any trauma takes a different amount of time for everyone, as we all heal at our own pace. Don't hesitate to book a session with mental-health professionals and ensure you get the help you need to manage your unresolved trauma preventing you from thoroughly enjoying your life.


Written By: Allyson Neil