What are the symptoms of trauma?

Trauma can bring about feelings of anxiety, depression, and hopelessness or fear that life will come to an abrupt or early end.1 Other symptoms include:2

  • Unpredictable emotions
  • Intensive intrusive recollections or flashbacks
  • Strained relationships
  • Physical symptoms like headaches or nausea
  • Persistent fatigue
  • Dissociation
  • Problems with sleep
  • Nightmares
  • Avoidance of emotions, sensations, or activities linked to the trauma



1. Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (2014). Trauma-Informed Care in Behavioral Health Services. US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (Treatment Improvement Protocol Series, No. 57.) Chapter 3, Understanding the Impact of Trauma.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK207191/ 

2. American Psychological Association (n.d.) Trauma. https://www.apa.org/topics/trauma