Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

(PTSD) - Ryan Donofry

What is PTSD?

"Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a debilitating mental disorder that follows experiencing or witnessing an extremely traumatic, tragic, or terrifying event."(Grohol, 2013) Photo Credit: (MilitaryHealth, 2012)

Prevalence of PTSD:

  • More common in women than men
  • 7 or 8 out of every 100 people will have PTSD at some point in their lives
  • 5.2 million people are diagnosed every year.
  • 10% of women are diagnosed with PTSD at some point in their lives

Symptoms:

Causes:

PTSD is an environmental caused disorder. “PTSD develops after a terrifying ordeal that involved physical harm or the threat of physical harm. The person who develops PTSD may have been the one who was harmed, the harm may have happened to a loved one, or the person may have witnessed a harmful event that happened to loved ones or strangers.”(What is Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), 2013)

Lance Corpral James Blake Miller's Story:

An Iraq war veteran, battles PTSD. He can’t get a job, drinks too much, and dreams of death. He is known as the “Marlboro Man” because of a famous picture taken of him smoking a cigarette after a fire in Iraq. He is often angry and confused. He barely sleeps because he is plagued by nightmares.

Treatment:

Psychotherapy, or “talk therapy”, usually lasts 6-12 weeks for a patient with PTSD. Exposure therapy is also used to help people face their fear. It exposes them to their fear in a safe way. Cognitive Restructuring is therapy that helps people make sense of bad memories. The therapist helps patients with PTSD look at their memories in healthy ways. Stress inoculation training is therapy that treats PTSD by teaching patients how to reduce their anxiety. Photo Credit: (A psychologist treating a patient, 2013).

Works Cited