PTSD

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

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Definition

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that's triggered by a terrifying event, either experiencing it or even witnessing it.

Myth about PTSD

"Only veterans can experience PSTD." That line is often used or often thought but is not true ANYONE can have PTSD or experience it.

Facts

  • In some cases, PTSD can develop after repeated or extreme exposure to traumatic events. This can be the case with people such as policemen, firemen, and EMTs.
  • Some people can develop PTSD by watching things happen on tv or on the computer, for example 9/11, you didn't have to see it live to get affected by it.

Statistics

About 14% of the American soldiers returning from Afghanistan and Iraq will most likely experience PTSD.

Signs and symptoms

  • Memories of the traumatic experience.
  • Having flashbacks as if it were happening again.
  • Nightmares or dreams about the experience.
  • Severe emotional distress or physical reactions to something that reminds you of the event.

Age of On-Set

The age varies based on life experience.

Related disorders

  • Depression
  • Anxiety

Causes

  • War
  • Series of trauma
  • Natural disasters
  • Stress

Diagnosis and Treatment

  • Therapy
  • Antidepressants
  • Anti-anxiety medications
  • Prazosins

Behavior Examples

  • Issues with drugs or alcohol use
  • Eating disorders
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Suicidal thoughts and actions

Help Resources

  • kidshealth.org
  • nami.org
  • nihm.nih.gov
  • mayoclinic.org
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