The individuals who go through torture should undergo reconstruction so that they can get back to where they used to personally feel about themselves before the bad incidences happened to them. The victims of torture do not require medical skills provided by doctors to make them feel better during the healing process. As argued by Dr. Summerfield in his book "The illness of Exile," his medical skills are never important in dealing with the healing of the victims. The victims need to be assisted by society and close friends to adjust to the normal life by involving them in the life normal activities such as securing stable jobs. Friends and family members play a major role in making sure that these victims of torture receive emotional support which is more necessary than medical attention provided by medics.
As stated in the introduction part, victims encounter devastating mental health. As much as they receive physical injuries, it is the psychological suffering that causes, even more, suffering a long time or even the rest of their life. These are merits and demerits of torture that needs to be evaluated concerning this argument. In most situations, physical injuries can be treated but the damage that happens to the mind as a result of torture can remind as an everlasting wound, and an individual may live with it for a longer period. It is the best to treat mental trauma in the context in which the victim experienced it. As it is evidence that a patient is more likely to suffer most when they fail to acknowledge the disease they are suffering from. They create more harm to their lives in silence. The victims of torture living in denial of devastating situations should be assisted to avoid more suffering.
In most situations, patients feel bad to open up and talk about the terrible experiences, and when they are made to, they feel more depressed and anxious. This is the best way of helping out the victim as it better to know the reason behind the person's depression than letting them suffer in silence. Opening up to a doctor or a professional counselor will help the victims understand why they are undergoing suffering. The counselor can help know that they can get rea cover r and get back to normal life, and their situation cannot be the end of everything. The victims should be assisted in fighting anxiety by letting them know that they should not blame themselves for getting into the situation they are in. They should be made to feel that they are still meaningful to themselves and society to avoid creating more shame and anxiety.
Many traditions do not talk about depression openly. In some scenarios, it is seen as a bad thing to discuss among individuals. Medical help can time be difficult to find as victims avoid being stigmatized by opening up about their bad experiences. Victims should learn to open up about their situation as depression is just a disease and needs treatment like any other. Some cases can be extreme like individuals being made to walk naked or being sexually abused. The victims find it hard to discuss their experiences fearing of the protection of their confidentiality. In this situation, the victim needs the services of a professional counselor or a doctor to help them open up about what happened to them and ensuring that their privacy is protected.
Trauma is often seen as an emotional wound that can have side effects on the body. One feel fatigued, numb and frequently have long lasting headaches. Victims of trauma isolate themselves from others making them to withdrawal from routine activities they used to love doing. They experience a lack of sleep or times they sleep excessively. They often suffer from a panic attack and encounter abdominal pains., individuals in this situation struggle the with lack of concentration thus making an impaired judgment. Their mind is always, fixed on certain things when they are depressed making them suffer more. In my personal experience of Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a result of my work in the Canadian Army in Kabe Kandahar Afghanistan. In my experience in the war front, I have seen some of my friends and colleagues get killed. Some were blown up and wounded. For anyone who witnessed this became a victim m of psychological trauma including myself. Before seeking medical help, I did not know I had become a victim of PTSD. I learned that this is a disease and I have prescribed some medicines to reduce anxiety which helped in controlling my emotions. The overall treatment, helped me to live in the present rather than the past which had caused,d me a lot of suffering through depression. I frequently visited the counselor, and I was assisted psychology, and I was able to think straight once again. Opening up about our situations is the beginning of our healing process.
Many factors can hinder the process of treating the victims of torture. In the scenario of immigrants coming from different countries and cultures, there could be a misunderstanding in the passing of information or the situation being misunderstood. In other situations, language can be a barrier to having a strong discussion which can force in an interpreter. A victim may not feel comfortable sharing their situation with a third-party. This situation can be resolved by building a professional relationship. In primary stages, there might be a lack of trust and understanding, but with frequent visits, they can know each other better and build a strong relationship. I struggle in finding the perfect person who could understand my situation and give me the right strategies that could help me deal with my trauma from my past experiences. Some of the counselors I came across could not understand my situation well enough, and I could not trust to share my story with others. At the end of it, I was able to find the right therapist who was compassionate, and he helped me recover from the trauma. Therefore, is crucial for any victim of trauma caused by torture to seek medical attention to get treatment and feel better.
Peer assistance is another significant way of treating victims of torture. As argued in the Global Journal of Community Psychology Practice 'From Passive Recipient to Community Advocate,' Peer support is described as a system that allows individuals to give and receive the help that is founded on certain principles such as shared responsibility, agreement, and respect on what is important. Peer help cannot be based on professionalism; it is about getting to know and understand another person's situation by listening to their experiences and psychological suffering. Sharing what you endured with close friends can help you heal from their advice and love they offer that makes you feel a sense of relevance and belonging. This does not always go right with everybody as some patients can have a problem in sharing their deep personal issues with peers. Once the strong relationship and trust are built among the peers, an individual can open up and share what they went through thus getting help.
It is argued by Dr. Summer Field that he had more difficulty in helping the individuals who suffered from mental health trauma caused by unemployment. Individuals new to the country felt that they were not having enough social support in the country hosting them. People feel mentally traumatized when they are away from their home country. It becomes a major source of mental health trauma when they are away from their families, friends, and relatives. They are faced with language barrier and communication become a problem. The problem of not having a job and they were once employed make them, not worth. Their self,-esteem is lowered as the victims are faced with the fact that they are unproductive to the new society they are living in. When they lack employment, they are unable to access quality therapy services as it requires fees for the service provided. Not having a job means you have no income and you cannot afford treatment in the host country. Life becomes not worth living when an individual struggle with expenses as one spend time at home doing nothing. On the other hand, a person can still be having a satisfying job but still suffers from mental trauma. In this scenario, if a victim cannot seek medical help, the mental trauma will end up hindering his/her production in the job. In my case, I struggled to settle in my new homeland because I did not know I was suffering from depression. I could feel tired even if I have done the little task. I did not do well in anything because I was struggling with the symptoms of depression.
Guus van der Veer explains the gap that exist between knowledge and practice. Professional psychotherapist may lack the courage to face the problems of a victim of torture seeking help. Majority of the professionals will expect to put in practice the general knowledge acquired in in school on a victim which at some point may not be in a good position to assist. Some situations require common sense and general understanding and academic knowledge. Inexperienced counselors should advise from the experienced professional psychotherapist. There are unexpected situations from the victims of torture that do not require academic knowledge, and if it is mistaken, it can cause more harm than good in their sensitive situation. To avoid subjecting a victim a specified way of therapy, it is good to contextualize the knowledge to fit the culture and environment that the victim of torture is in. In some countries,s westernized context of counseling might not work, and it is the best to focus on the local and traditional ways of sorting out the problem facing the patient. In the case of new foreigners facing the trauma of war, different approaches that befit them is necessary to apply. Trying to help a certain group of individuals using imported knowledge may cause disappointing results. The knowledge must be developed locally to understand their daily problems and how to handle them. Understanding their ignorance is also a key to understanding their mental health trauma. Some patients may receive inappropriate diagnosis due to cross-cultural ignorance factors (Summerfield, 2001).
Refugees are victims of torture suffering as they encounter many hardship situations as they travel finding peaceful places in other countries. In her book 'HUMAN CARGO,' Caroline Moorehead explains the hardship that refugees go through in the foreign land trying to find refuge. The refugees endure hunger, get tortured by smugglers, and they finally land in a foreign country with different culture. At some point, they are not welcomed and get deported. Women carry with them the suffering they faced when they leave their children by the roadside and the traumatic memories of their close friends and relatives getting killed in their presence. Men suffer helplessly by not figuring out how to get their families out of camps. As much as these victims require physical medication attention, what they need most is psychotherapy for them to accept the situation they are in. They are mentally traumatized, and they need help to overcome the suffering brought by depression. A situation like this requires compassionate human nature to give life back to individuals who are already giving up on living.
The mentality of a human being needs to be at in a stable and comfortable condition for it to function properly. It is clear that the actions of inhumanity cannot be prevented completely and individuals still fall victims of torture and abuse. There is no doubt that when the mental health of human beings is not well enough, it will badly impact everything in life. Physical medical attention alone cannot help the victims recover from mental health trauma caused by their suffering. Therefore it is important to take mental health trauma seriously and seek psychotherapy as soon a...
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