The Trauma Continuum: What is It?
The Trauma Continuum is a conceptual model that we created to distinguish between shock, trauma and stress states. It recognizes that each state activates different parts of the brain and different parts of the nervous system, evokes different post-traumatic responses, involves different orientations to time, and has explicit physiological characteristics.
The chart below summarizes these differences.
Because of both the complexity and the specificity in the Trauma Continuum, shock, trauma, and stress states each require very different and specific psychotherapeutic interventions. The Continuum identifies interventions that are specific to each of these three states, and describes the state-appropriate (and ethical) clinical support for practitioners to offer their clients.
This second chart summarize the different interventions for shock, trauma and stress states.
The articles below talk more about different aspects of the Trauma Continuum.