What Is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?


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“Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is serious mental illness characterized by symptoms of avoidance and nervous system arousal after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event,” says Sara Staggs, LICSW, MSW, MPH.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD is an anxiety disorder that occurs after being involved in a traumatic and terribly unforgettable event. Example of activities that contribute to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder includes:

  • Vehicular accidents
  • Sexual Abuse
  • Violence

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Things You Need To Know About Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is affecting more and more people around the world. There are straight facts which you need to know about this particular disorder.


A Person With PTSD Experiences Flashbacks

It is challenging to forget a traumatic experience. That’s why people with PTSD will experience some flashbacks even if they don’t want to remember it.


Nightmares Are Their Worst Enemy

Even in their sleep, they still experience recollections in the form of a nightmare. It happens a lot especially if the event just occurred and it can be the last thing that enters their minds before they fall asleep. Most times, people with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder fall into insomnia and become sleep-deprived.


PTSD Affects All Age Group

Children and adults are not excused from PTSD. More often, kids are the victims of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and some of them bring it to adulthood. To understand better, read similar articles on websites like www.scarymommy.com and www.thebump.com.


PTSD Can Sometimes Appear Late

Some symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder will not be traceable right away. It can take months or years for others for the signs to fully develop.

“The essential psychological effect of trauma is a shattering of innocence. Trauma creates a loss of faith that there is any safety, predictability, or meaning in the world, or any safe place in which to retreat. It involves utter disillusionment,” according to Lynn Margolies, Ph.D.

What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of PTSD?


Physical Pains

If the incident had just happened, it is possible that people affected with PTSD can experience some physical pains. It includes injuries, back pains, numbness, nausea and vomiting, and headache. Sometimes, these acute pains can become chronic because of the trauma that people with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder have experienced.

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Emotional Symptoms

Emotions are the best way to distinguish if a person is going through something. Their current feelings modify their physical actions. People with PTSD might experience confusion, anger, shame, hopelessness, irritability, and withdrawal from people. Denial might also take place, especially if a significant other died during the incident.


Behavioral Changes

Altered coping up mechanism and behavioral changes are common when a person experiences a traumatic event in his life. For people with PTSD, there are frequent behavioral changes. They include trouble sleeping, violence, excessive crying and grief, and uncontrollable anger.


Their Perception Of The Incident


People with PTSD tend to rethink about the incident that happened to them, and they can have some knowledge of what happened. Sometimes they can blame themselves for the event and generalize that all people are evil.


Everyday Things That Are Subject To Change After The Traumatic Incident:

  • Withdrawal from people around them
  • Poor concentration
  • Rebellion
  • Socialization will be a hard thing for them


How Can PTSD Affect The Development Of A Child?

The rewinding trauma that affects a child can alter his or her development. Effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder can vary depending on the age of the child. Younger children tend to be scared of objects that are related to the incident and prefer to play alone.


On the other hand, older children may apply the memories of the previous incident with violent parallel plays.

As for treatment, “The best treatment for PTSD is evidence-based psychotherapy, which includes trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR),” says Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S.