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Cognitive Indicators

Traumatic experiences can affect and alter cognitions. From the outset, trauma challenges the core life assumptions that help individuals navigate daily life. For example, it would be difficult to leave the house in the morning if you believed that the world was not safe, that all people are dangerous, or that life holds no promise. Belief that one’s efforts and intentions can protect oneself from bad things makes it less likely for an individual to perceive personal vulnerability. However, traumatic events—particularly if they are unexpected—can challenge such beliefs.