Do I have PTSD?
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD, is a mental health condition which sometimes develops after someone experiences a traumatic event. It is often associated with violent or dangerous events such as physical or sexual abuse, combat, natural disasters and horrific accidents. People can also develop PTSD after less personally violent yet still traumatic situations, like losing someone you care about or watching them suffer harm.
Is it PTSD?
PTSD is recognizable by its symptoms. These occur because the sufferer hasn’t adequately processed the event. The trauma can keep resurfacing, causing as much distress as if it is happening again, amplifying anxieties and fears, impacting thought, mood and life.
Symptoms of PTSD usually begin shortly after the trauma but may sometimes take years to develop. They can be triggered by words, objects, feelings, people, or events reminiscent of the traumatic experience.
Symptoms of PTSD are grouped into four clusters:
- Flashbacks, hearing, seeing, or physically feeling events as if it is occurring again
- Nightmares, or flashbacks while asleep
- Frightening thoughts or images as a result of the event
- Emotions similar to those felt around or during the event
- Purposely avoiding places, events, or things that remind the person of the trauma
- Avoiding thoughts or feelings connected with the trauma
- Detachment from life
- Decreased motivation
- Relational distance or isolation
Arousal and reactivity symptoms
- Easily startled
- Tense feeling
- Easily agitated, angered, frustrated
- Physically restless, edgy, pacing, tapping, hard to sit still
- Muscle tension, tremor, twitching
- Heartburn, diarrhea, stomach cramping
Cognitive and mood symptoms
- Memory issues
- Concentration or attention struggles
- Occasional confusion or feeling overwhelmed
- Negative self-defeating thoughts
- Distorted views about themselves, others, God, or various life activities
- Distorted feelings of guilt or self-blame
- Loss of interest in past hobbies or activities
- Lack of enjoyment
- Anxiety, depression, anger
Do you recognize any of the signs and symptoms of PTSD in your life or in someone you love? Be encouraged.PTSD is treatable.
Experiencing any combination of these symptoms after a traumatic experience or event can be terrifying. At Honey Lake Clinic we understand—and we can help.
The very good news is that PTSD is treatable, and the prognosis is good for those who do seek help. The earlier help is sought, the better the outcome. While you cannot go back in time and change events that have happened, with proper treatment you can change the way you store those memories and how you react to and feel about them going forward. Modifying your thinking while developing the skills to manage the memories and ripples of that traumatic event will help you heal.
At Honey Lake Clinic, our experienced staff, licensed therapists, psychologists, and psychiatric specialists understand that effective treatment for PTSD requires a multifaceted approach, involving healing of the mind, body, and spirit. We are here to offer hope and provide answers for you.