What is PTSD?

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) may develop after a person is exposed to one or more traumatic events, such as sexual assault, warfare, serious injury, or threats of imminent death. The diagnosis may be given when a group of symptoms, such as disturbing recurring flashbacks, avoidance or numbing of memories of the event, and hyper arousal, continue for more than a month after the occurrence of a traumatic event.

Do I have PTSD?

Do you feel on edge, moody, or even angry and you don’t know why? Are you having flashbacks of traumatic events? Do you have bouts of depression or guilt? Are you having thoughts of hurting yourself or even taking your own life? Are nightmares a recurring problem? Do sudden noises startle you and cause you to over react? Are you staying at home more or emotionally withdrawing from friends and family. If you answered yes to any of these questions you may be suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

If you have experienced severe trauma or life-threatening events due to combat, sexual assault, or any other event, you may develop symptoms of PTSD, also known as shell shock, combat fatigue, or combat stress. Chances are you felt like your life or the lives of others were in imminent danger, or you felt helpless over what was happening. You may have witnessed people being injured or killed, or you may have been physically harmed yourself.

Some of the most common symptoms of PTSD include hyper vigilance, recurring memories or nightmares of the event(s), sleeplessness, loss of interest, emotional withdrawal, or feeling numb, anger, and irritability. There are many ways PTSD can impact your everyday life and it affects everyone differently.

Sometimes these symptoms start right away or don’t surface for months or years after the event or returning from combat. They may also come and go or can be triggered by something currently going on in your life. If these problems won’t go away or are getting worse—or you feel like they are disrupting your daily life—you may have PTSD.

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