Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
What Is PTSD?
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), once called shell shock or battle fatigue syndrome, is a serious condition that can develop after a person has experienced or witnessed a traumatic or terrifying event in which serious physical harm occurred or was threatened. PTSD is a lasting consequence of traumatic ordeals that cause intense fear, helplessness, or horror, such as a sexual or physical assault, the unexpected death of a loved one, divorce, a health scare, an accident, war, or natural disaster. Families of victims can also develop PTSD, as can emergency personnel and rescue workers. WebMD
Most people who experience a traumatic event will have reactions that may include shock, anger, nervousness, fear, and even guilt. These reactions are common, and for most people, they go away over time. For a person with PTSD, however, these feelings continue and even increase, becoming so strong that they keep the person from living a normal life. People with PTSD have symptoms for longer than one month and cannot function as well as before the event occurred. WebMD
- Reliving: People with PTSD repeatedly relive the ordeal through thoughts and memories of the trauma. These may include flashbacks, hallucinations, and nightmares. They also may feel great distress when certain things remind them of the trauma, such as the anniversary date of the event.
- Avoiding: The person may avoid people, places, thoughts, or situations that may remind him or her of the trauma. This can lead to feelings of detachment and isolation from family and friends, as well as a loss of interest in activities that the person once enjoyed.
- Increased arousal: These include excessive emotions; problems relating to others, including feeling or showing affection; difficulty falling or staying asleep; irritability; outbursts of anger; difficulty concentrating; and being “jumpy” or easily startled. The person may also suffer physical symptoms, such as increased blood pressure and heart rate, rapid breathing, muscle tension, nausea, and diarrhea.
- Negative Cognitions and Mood: This refers to thoughts and feelings related to blame, estrangement, and memories of the traumatic event.
I came about this topic when I was at a restaurant with an old-time friend not too long ago. He has PTSD as well, but for something way different from me… he was sent to war, not once but twice. We talked quite a while about this PTSD and how it was effecting him… I also know a few others in the military who went to war and came back different. It changes a person, and hearing their stories, and knowing how it has effected them is sad. The friend who was sitting across the table from me then tells me he is going to be sent to Africa this year for 9 months even when he isn’t well. Shouldn’t there be a law against that?(and if there is a law is it not being enforced?) Shouldn’t they allow soldiers to fix their health problems before shipping them like cargo to train, to go to combat, to do anything? He’s a family man, his family needs him to be of sound mind!
Anyway, I thought this was an important topic to write about, and therefore here I am writing about what many people live with to let them know they are not alone in this. Find others with PTSD, talk with them about life, about your story, listen to theirs, become friends… it’s good to have people you can relate to and who you feel can understand what you’re going through. Counseling is always there for you as well. I did that my first year of recovery!
If you know anyone with PTSD, let them know you’re willing to listen and help.
For more information please visit ‘www.ptsdalliance.org‘
For more information on the US Department of Veterans Affairs click here! (802) 296-6300
Have a great day readers!
photo 1 by: psychkatka.blogspot.com
photo 2 by: Huffingtonpost.com
last photo by: brickelandassociates.com