What is PTSD?

PTSD from a car accident

PTSD is an acronym for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.  All too often people associate PTSD only with military members. However, it is also prevalent among individuals who have never been in the military.  Mayo Clinic defines post-traumatic stress disorder as a mental health condition that is triggered by a terrifying event — either experiencing it or witnessing it. Examples of triggering events could include physical or sexual abuse, domestic violence, a serious accident, the loss of a child, war and conflict, or torture.

Symptoms of PTSD

PTSD symptoms could start shortly after an event, but typically, symptoms start further down the road. It is possible for symptoms to show even even years after the incident.  Symptoms can interfere with your ability to participate in your routine daily activities.  They can also cause problems with personal relationships.

According to the Mayo Clinic research,  symptoms of PTSD are generally grouped into four categories.

  1. Intrusive memories – Reliving the event, nightmares, unwanted memories of the trauma.
  2. Avoidance – Avoiding talking about the trauma or avoiding people, places, or activities that remind you of the traumatic event.
  3. Negative changes in thinking and mood – Feeling detached, hopeless, or numb. Negative thoughts about yourself or others.
  4. Changes in physical and emotional reactions – Easily startled, always on guard, angry outbursts or aggressiveness, and trouble sleeping or concentrating.
  5. Self-destructive behavior – One example is driving excessive speeds or drinking too much.

Children also experience PTSD from many life events.  Children often react by having nightmares or may re-inact the trauma in play.

Where do I Start?

Sometimes recognizing signs of PTSD take the help of a friend or counselor. If you’ve expereinced a traumatic event, PTSD s not unusual. Trauma therapy can help decrease your symptoms and can improve your life. If you’re looking for a trauma therapist in Jacksonville, Boaz, or Huntsville, our skilled team is ready to help you thrive.  Reach any of our offices today by calling (256) 239-5662 and begin your growth to a healthier life or fill out our contact form today.

 

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