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Trauma and PTSD

Commonly known as: traumatic stress, trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder

Trauma and PTSD

Explore trauma and ptsd by scrolling through the page or simply select an option from the drop down if you wish to jump to the relevant section of the page:

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Need urgent help?

If you feel your life, or someone else’s life is at risk, phone 999 or go to your local Emergency Department.

What is PTSD?

Unfortunately, many people will experience a traumatic event in their lifetime. Traumatic events are typically unexpected and can happen at any age. Often during a traumatic event, the person believes that their life or physical integrity is in danger. Sometimes, the person might witness a traumatic event where someone else dies or is seriously injured.

These types of traumas might include serious accidents, interpersonal violence, sexual assault, birth trauma, combat stress, or witnessing the traumatic death or injury of another person.

Following Traumatic events like these it is normal for people to experience a number of symptoms. These include flashbacks and nightmares, avoiding thinking or talking about the trauma, avoiding any reminders of the traumatic experience, and feeling “on-edge” or very anxious a lot of the time.

Understandably these symptoms can affect people’s mood and functioning.

It is important to know that these symptoms are a completely normal response to such a frightening situation. Whilst these symptoms are unpleasant, they are not dangerous and can happen to anyone after a traumatic experience.

Over time, most people will recover naturally. This means that these symptoms will usually settle down by themselves.

For some people these symptoms will persist for more than a month or feel really unmanageable, and if this is the case, there are a number of evidence-based interventions that can help.


Self-help advice

  • If you have experienced a traumatic event it is really important to take good care of yourself; making sure that you eat, sleep, exercise, and connect with loved ones.
  • Be kind to yourself. You have lived through something really difficult, and it is normal to experience a range of emotions after traumatic events.
  • Connect with people you trust and, if you feel up to it, talk through what has happened in as little or as much detail as you need. You don’t need to experience difficult feelings alone.
  • If you are supporting a child, friend, or relative following a trauma then it can be helpful to provide lots of validation and kindness. Allow them to talk about what happened as little or as much as they need. Of course, it’s important to take care of your own wellbeing whilst caring for others.
  • If you or someone you know need urgent help – go to our ‘urgent help’ page immediately’.


If you need further help managing trauma

If the information, advice, resources and courses on this page have not been helpful and/or you think you need more help, there are many free support services available.

If you live in the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board area, and are aged over 18, you can make an appointment with a Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner (PWP) or GP by contacting your local GP surgery. PWPs are NHS mental health practitioners who provide a free service for people experiencing mild to moderate mental health problems.

If you are under 18 or worried about someone aged under 18 and need urgent advice/self-referral to local mental health and wellbeing services in the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board area, contact SPACE-Wellbeing.

Or alternatively contact another approved helpline. Some services are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Last updated: 27.07.2022

Self-help resources for PTSD and trauma

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Post Traumatic Stress (PTSD) – NHS Self-help Guide

Panic, Stress, Trauma and PTSD mind
Apps (iOS) Apps (iOS)

PTSD Coach App: Designed for those who have, or may have, post-traumatic stress disorder (iOS)

Trauma and PTSD mind
Apps (Android) Apps (Android)

PTSD Coach App: Designed for those who have, or may have, post-traumatic stress disorder (Android)

Trauma and PTSD mind
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Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – Mind

Trauma and PTSD mind
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Nightmares and flashbacks: Traumatic memories – The Loss Foundation

Trauma and PTSD mind
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Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) – New Pathways

Abuse, Trauma and PTSD

New Pathways

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Prisoner Post Traumatic Stress (PTSD) – NHS Self-help Guide

Prisoners' Mental Health, Trauma and PTSD mind
Websites Websites

Traumatic Stress Wales

Trauma and PTSD mind
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Support and helplines for PTSD and trauma

See below for helplines relevant to trauma. To see our full list of helplines, visit our helplines page.

NHS 111 Wales Logo

NHS 111 Wales

The NHS 111 telephone service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and you can use it for urgent health advice on what services to access or how to manage an illness or condition and to access urgent primary care out of hours.

Visit NHS 111 Wales website ➝
Samaritans Logo

Samaritans – For Everyone

If you are struggling to cope and need someone to talk to, Samaritans will listen. You can contact Samaritans 24 hours a day, 365 days a year on 116 123 (free from any phone) or email [email protected].

You can also call the Samaritans Welsh Language Line (free from any phone) on 0808 164 0123 (7pm–11pm every day).

Visit the Samaritans Cymru website ➝
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