ON THE NEXUS OF CHRONIC PAIN, POSTTRAUMATIC STRESS, AND ALEXITHYMIA

  • Nakieta Lankster One Heartt, Inc.
Keywords: Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Chronic Pain, Alexithymia, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

Abstract

Chronic pain, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, and Alexithymia are commonly co-occurring disorders which interact in such a manner that each exacerbates the symptomology of the other. The cyclical nature of co-morbid chronic pain and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder symptoms (i.e., chronic pain reigniting trauma symptoms and trauma symptoms manifesting somatically to increase pain), coupled with the communication and emotion insight impairments associated with Alexithymia, often leads to increased complications. However, the interaction between these diagnoses is often overlooked by treating health care and behavioral health practitioners and there is a dearth of research regarding efficacious treatment. This article explores the relationship between these disorders, their interaction, and hypothesizes treatment interventions that address the unique needs of these patients.

Author Biography

Nakieta Lankster, One Heartt, Inc.
Dr. Lankster is a licensed clinical psychologist providing assessment, group therapy, and individual therapy in Maryland and Alabama. Her offices are in Baltimore, MD and Demopolis, AL. Current clients include children with various learning developmental diagnoses and adults coping with trauma and substance abuse. Her previous practice experiences have included families, couples, children and adults in San Francisco Bay Area, Chicago, and South Africa. Dr. Lankster graduated from the American School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University, San Francisco Bay Area campus and has undergraduate degrees in psychology and sociology from the University of West Alabama. Through her research and work with a diverse base of families and children, she has gained both practical and research-based knowledge on various topics related to psychological issues and emotional disturbance. Currently, she specializes in and researches issues surrounding community and mass trauma, rural mental health, culture related issues, and child therapy. She has published several works on psychological research and treatment. When she isn't  in her practice, she is  working as the Founder/ CEO of One HEARTT, Inc. and conducting workshops and classes on various psychological topics.
Published
2018-11-14