| Published: December 28, 2021
Impact of Trauma, Prevalent Interventions, and Help-Seeking Attitudes among Sexual-Assault Survivors: A Systematic Review
As a traumatic life experience, sexual-assault can have a life-long impact on an individual’s overall health, including their psychological well-being. As a traumatic life experience, sexual-assault can have a life-long impact on an individual’s overall health, including their psychological well-being. The goal of this review is to effectively examine the role that trauma plays in the survivors’ well-being and prevalent interventions that facilitate healing and recovery. The paper also seeks to highlight the role played by differences in cultural backgrounds and gender identities in aggravating the trauma associated with sexual violence. Six databases including PubMed, PsychINFO, JSTOR, Wiley Online Library, Academia.edu, and EBSCO were searched for studies on the impact of sexual assault on cisgendered females and transgendered females. The key findings were summarized under three themes: Physical- Impact, Psychological-Impact, and Interventions and Help-seeking attitudes among Sexual- Assault Survivors. The physical-impact of sexual-assault discusses the differences between help- seeking attitudes for physical symptoms and psychological distress, highlighting the common resultant physical symptoms – tension headaches, nausea, back pain, allergies, skin disorders, etc. The psychological-impact points out the subsequent health impact this experience has on the survivors’ well-being and self-image, including depression, PTSD, anxiety, and other such issues. It also highlights the role of self-stigma, cultural differences, and revictimization in aggravating the distress. The importance of legal, medical, mental health and community systems responsible for intervening are discussed under the theme of interventions. Currently, most interventions are focused on providing medical and legal aid. While these social systems also need to be strengthened, the need for developing psychological interventions at par with these systems has also been emphasized upon. Finally, further suggestions for an ecological model have also been discussed.
This is an Open Access Research distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any Medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
© 2021, Jain M., Dhawan S., Sharma S., Sethi V., Kumar S., Niloy, Chatterjee A. & Saxena A.
Received: October 22, 2021; Revision Received: December 18, 2021; Accepted: December 28, 2021
Published in Volume 09, Issue 4, October- December, 2021