Is amnesia possible due to psychological trauma? What are the possible symptoms of this? And are there treatment methods? Here’s the most important information.
Memory loss due to psychological trauma or the so-called dissociative amnesia, which is a state of inability to retrieve or remember certain information often as a result of exposure to a traumatic psychological event, we offer you the most important information about memory loss due to psychological trauma in the following article:
Memory loss due to psychological trauma
A person can suffer from memory loss or forgetting important information about his life as a result of a traumatic psychological event, forgetfulness may be limited to certain areas of his life and may include a lot about his life and may cause the loss of his identity.
Symptoms of dissociative forgetfulness can be mild and in other cases can be severe and affect their quality of life, ability to function and the nature of their social relationships.
Causes of memory loss due to psychological trauma
Dissociative forgetfulness is associated with a psychologically traumatic event or an event that has formed psychological trauma to the patient This event may be one of the following:
- Fighting in a war.
- Exposure to emotional, physical or sexual abuse.
- Be a victim of a crime or witness to the commission of a crime.
- Severe financial or work-related stress.
- The occurrence of a natural disaster, such as: earthquakes or hurricanes.
As for why the occurrence of dissociative forgetfulness is associated with psychological trauma, there are several ideas that explain and play a role in this, including the following:
- Dissociative forgetfulness develops as an attempt by the brain to cope with psychological trauma and to protect the mental health of the patient.
2. The stress caused by trauma affects the brain’s ability to retrieve information and memories associated with the time of the trauma.
3. Heredity may have a role in the development of schizophrenic attacks in some cases.
Symptoms of memory loss due to psychological trauma
Symptoms are classified according to the type of dissociative forgetfulness as follows:
Localized dissociative forgetfulness: Memory loss involves specific areas or periods of a patient’s life, such as a certain amount of time in childhood.
General dissociative forgetfulness: Amnesia affects key parts of a patient’s life, for example, who may not be able to remember his name, job, family or friends.
Dissociative fugue: In this type, the patient suffers from general amnesia, which includes the loss of his identity in addition to adopting a new identity without realizing that he has forgotten his true identity.
Diagnosis of memory loss due to psychological trauma
There are no specific tests that can determine dissociative forgetfulness, but if symptoms appear, the doctor will take the patient’s medical history and perform a variety of tests, including the following:
- Blood tests.
Based on the results of previous examinations, if there are no other causes of memory loss, such as: brain disease, drug use, drunkenness due to alcohol or sleep deprivation, the condition will be diagnosed by psychologists using special assessment tools.
Treatment of memory loss due to psychological trauma
Treatment depends on the severity of the amnesia condition, as cases of memory loss that last for a short period of time only require support from those close to the patient, on the other hand, severe cases need greater care in addition to providing a safe and supportive environment that helps them restore memory normally, and if this does not work, doctors may resort to hypnosis.
After recovering from memory loss, the patient can undergo psychotherapy, which includes cognitive behavioral therapy, a psychotherapeutic technique that helps detect the underlying conflict between trauma and unhealthy thought patterns.