The prevalence of sexual assault in the United States is nothing short of alarming — according to the CDC, more than 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have experienced sexual violence at some point during their lives. While statistics may be a cold way to open up a discussion about this very important topic, our aim is to let you know that you’re not alone when it comes to sexual violence.
April is Sexual Assault Awareness month in the US and the team here at the Institute for Advanced Psychiatry, led by Dr. Diana Ghelber, wants to shine a spotlight on this type of terrible trauma.
Above all else, we want you to know that there are ways you can move past the experience and reclaim your life through therapy. Here’s a look at five benefits of therapy after sexual assault.
What we mean by therapy
Before we get into the benefits of seeking therapy after a sexual assault, let’s look at the types of therapy that can be beneficial, which include:
- Psychotherapy (cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy)
- Ketamine infusion therapy
- Transcranial magnetic stimulation
- Group therapy
- Prescription medications
Each of our patients is unique and responds to sexual assault in their own way, which is why we offer a wide range of treatments, which we often use in combination.
1. Moving past the trauma
Sexual assault is traumatic, and the risks of developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are extermely high among victims of sexual violence. In fact, nearly half of sexual assault victims report symptoms of PTSD, which include:
- Re-experiencing the traumatic event (flashbacks and nightmares, etc.)
- Overriding negative thoughts and beliefs
- Startling easily
Through therapy, we can treat your PTSD or prevent it from taking hold in the first place.
2. Reclaim your sexual health
For obvious reasons, your sexual health can suffer after a sexual assault. Through therapy, we can help you separate the sexual assault from your sexual health.
3. Improve your physical health
Many people who experience a trauma such as sexual violence develop physical health issues, including:
- Gastrointestinal distress
- Pelvic pain
- Intense premenstrual symptoms
By addressing your sexaul violence through therapy, we can often improve your physical health.
4. Better control your behavioral health
Unfortunately, many people who experience sexual violence turn to outlets like alcohol or drugs to numb that pain and anxiety. Through our therapy services, we can help you avoid the pitfalls and risks of substance use.
5. Take back your power
This final benefit is the most important and encompasses everything we’ve discussed until this point. The feeling of powerlessness after a sexual assault can wreak havoc on your life, and we want to help you reclaim your power. Through therapy, we can show you how to take back control so that you can lead a happy and productive life long into the future.
If you have more questions about the benefits of therapy after sexual assault, please contact one of our two locations in Fort Worth or Granby, Texas.