Trauma or adversity?

Description

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews recognizes several trauma-focused therapies as evidence-based and thus recommended treatments for posttraumatic stress disorder (Bisson, Roberts, Andrew, Cooper, & Lewis, 2013). However, there is no consensus on the definition of trauma, and controversy persists about its meaning, which brings into question the specificity and the target of trauma-focused treatments. The construct of trauma is often linked to posttraumatic stress disorder and Criterion A of trauma-related disorders as defined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). In other instances, it is understood as a broader phenomenon covering much if not most of human suffering. In this report, I address the dichotomy between the narrow and broad views of trauma and review considerations for a tighter definition of trauma on the grounds of clinical philosophy, methodology, and practice. I suggest that the construct of trauma should be grounded in the general theory of stress, where trauma is considered a particular kind of stress response alongside with adversity and normative stress. Following such conceptualization, I formulate a working definition of what trauma is and, more importantly, is not.

Format

Journal

Language

English

Author(s)

Valery Krupnik

Original Work Citation

Krupnik, V. (2019). Trauma or adversity? Traumatology. Advance online publication. doi:10.1037/trm0000169

Collection

Citation

“Trauma or adversity?,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed May 28, 2020, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/25929.

Output Formats