Our Services - Treatment


For posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) to be diagnosed, there must be exposure to actual or threatened death, serious injury, or sexual violence in one or more of the following ways; directly experiencing the traumatic event(s), witnessing others experiencing traumatic events, learning that violent and/or accidental events were experienced by family members or close friends, or repeated or extreme exposure to aversive details of traumatic events (e.g., police officers repeatedly exposed to internet child exploitation, tow-truck operators’ experiences attending gruesome accident scenes, etc.).

No two individuals will react in the same manner to a traumatic event and not everyone who experiences a traumatic event will become psychologically traumatized. However, if you are feeling overwhelmed and experience many of the symptoms listed below, you should consult a qualified practitioner for assessment.

Re-experiencing the traumatic event

  • Nightmares about the trauma
  • Distressing and intrusive memories of the trauma
  • Flashbacks to the trauma in which you feel or act as if the traumatic event(s) are recurring
  • Marked physiological reactions to cues that resemble an aspect of the trauma

Avoidance or numbing

  • Attempts to avoid thoughts, feelings, activities associated with the trauma
  • Avoidance of, or efforts to avoid, external reminders of the traumatic event(s) that trigger distressing memories, thoughts or feelings, e.g., people, places, objects, activities.

Negative changes in thoughts and feelings associated with the trauma

  • Persistent negative emotional reactions, e.g., fear, horror, guilt, shame, anger
  • Feelings of detachment from others
  • A persistent inability to experience positive emotions
  • Markedly diminished interest or participation in significant activities 
  • Inability to remember important aspects of the trauma (not due to brain injury, alcohol, or drugs)
  • Persistent, negative expectations or beliefs about oneself, others, or the world (e.g., “No one loves me”; “All people are evil”, etc.)
  • Persistent and distorted cognitions about the cause of the trauma usually blaming oneself

Hyperarousal and reactivity

  • Irritability and angry outbursts
  • Exaggerated startle response
  • Hypervigilance
  • Concentration problems
  • Sleep disturbance (difficulty falling asleep, problems staying asleep, restless sleep)

Clinicians at FVB Psychologists have experience in working with traumatized children, adolescents and adults. Treatment goals include 1) reducing intrusive symptoms, 2) reducing symptoms of avoidance, 3) reducing numbing and withdrawal, 4) reducing hyperarousal, 5) improving impulse control, and 6) reducing feelings of self-loathing. By reducing these problematic symptoms, a number of related and important goals can be accomplished including 1) developing the capacity to interpret events more realistically, 2) developing the ability to judge individuals more realistically with respect to their potential threat content, and 3) enhancing self-esteem, trust and feelings of safety.

Meet Our Team

Our assessment and therapy services are conducted by an experienced team of clinicians who work collaboratively with the client to address mental health challenges through evidence-based interventions. This may include, but are not limited to, such therapeutic approaches as cognitive-behavioural therapy, psychodynamic therapy, or mindfulness-based techniques.

Meet Our Team