Trauma and loss are among the main causes of psychological problems worldwide. Posttraumatic stress disorder affects approximately 4% of the population, causing anxiety, distressing memories, and sleep problems in many survivors of disaster, war, assault, and accidents. Loss can cause Prolonged Grief Disorder in approximately 7% of bereaved people, resulting in considerable impairment for those who cannot overcome the emotional distress of losing a loved one.
The Traumatic Stress Clinic conducts a wide range of studies investigating the brain mechanisms behind PTSD and Prolonged Grief, and the best ways of treating these conditions with therapies including cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness meditation. We use many paradigms, including genetic, neuroimaging, cognitive, and social factors to understand better treatments. Our findings have shaped the way PTSD and prolonged grief are treated internationally.