PTSD: Symptoms and Treatment Types

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It’s commonly known that everyone deals with trauma differently. For example, some people don’t like to talk about their traumatic event while others want to talk about it in order to help others avoid such situations.

Many people believe that PTSD is primarily diagnosed in military workers, police officers, and people who work in the service. However, PTSD can happen to anyone after they have seen or witnessed a traumatic event. That’s why it’s essential that you know the symptoms and types of treatment in case you needed to reach out for help if you or friend were to experience PTSD.

But what are some symptoms of PTSD? Here are some symptoms and treatment types for PTSD:

What is PTSD?

Post-traumatic stress disorder is most commonly defined by witnessing or encountering a traumatic event and not being able to adjust to ordinary life because of that traumatic event. However, through practicing coping strategies and self-care a person with PTSD will be okay. PTSD does not have to be a permanent diagnose, but it depends on the person to do work adequately. If a person relies solely on medical professionals and medication, it’s likely he or she won’t get much better.

Symptoms of PTSD  

The symptoms of PTSD can start as soon as one month after the traumatic event occurred, although in some situations it can take up to one or two years until symptoms begin. Such symptoms are known to cause severe problems in a person’s personal, professional, ad social life. In fact, symptoms of PTSD can also obstruct a person’s capability to do everyday jobs. Most doctors who work with PTSD patients group symptoms into four categories: invasive memories, avoidance, negative thought patterns, and a difference in reaction. However, since people experience trauma differently, it’s likely that some people won’t struggle with all or some of these symptoms.

  1. Invasive memories

People who experience invasive memories are likely to struggle with flashbacks of the traumatic event. These flashbacks might provoke emotions about the trauma to stir in your mind. Also, invasive memories come in the form of nightmares and dreams. Some people experience dreams about the traumatic event in vivid detail. However, for some people, the dreams are less detailed but include memories that would like to be forgotten nonetheless.

  1. Avoidance 

Many people think that avoiding thinking about a traumatic event will prevent any symptoms from occurring. Although, sadly avoidance is a symptom of PTSD. In fact, if you try to avoid your feelings about a traumatic event, you’re only going to hurt yourself in the long-run. Most people who try to avoid their feelings experience flashbacks or nightmares. Since the body is hurting it needs to release the pent-up emotions somehow, the easiest way is when the body is sleeping since all the body’s defenses are down. If you want to ease your sleeping experience you might want to admit to yourself what is really going on. While that can be challenging, there are many organizations, therapists, and doctors that would want to help.

Another way avoidance can creep into a person’s system is by avoiding people, activities, or places that remind a person of a trauma. Facing those triggers might not be the most natural thing to do. It can bring back painful memories, but it could also take back one’s power and control. Although it’s a choice that everyone decides differently. Some people don’t need to go back to the activities they once loved. Sometimes all a person needs to do is move on, and that’s okay.

  1. Negative thought patterns  

Many people who experience PTSD struggle with feelings that they could have done more or that the trauma they experience is their fault, thus leaving them to have a negative thought pattern. Some negative thoughts include hopelessness, feeling emotionally paralyzed, and having a pessimistic worldview. People who experience such negative thoughts are likely to become disconnected from family and friends. Also, many people whom a negative thought pattern detach from their favorite hobbies and become interested in one leisure activity rather than various activities.

  1. Difference in reaction

People who experience PTSD are likely to be easily startled or anxious. In fact, some people might find themselves always being alert for potential danger. Due to nightmares or unsettling dreams, some people might have trouble sleeping through the night. Also, people who experience PTSD are likely to struggle with guilt or embarrassment over their situation and how their feeling have changed. Many people believe that these symptoms are unique to them; however, such symptoms are normal when experiencing PTSD. Therefore, you shouldn’t feel shame over your emotions because in time you’ll be able to manage your emotions and reactions better. If you want to learn how to manage your reactions better, you can always seek help by going to counseling sessions, seeing a doctor, or talking to a therapist.

Types of treatment

Treatment is centered on helping a patient recover his or her control over life. There are two types of treatment for PTSD: psychotherapy and medication. However, most doctors who treat PTSD suggest a combination of the two in order to improve symptoms. Some people dislike the idea of talking about their inner-most feelings, although psychotherapy has been proven to be beneficial to treating and preventing future PTSD struggles.

Some of the advantages of psychotherapy include teaching fundamental techniques to assist with symptoms, learning coping mechanisms, and treating related mental health issues such as depression or anxiety. But it’s essential that if the patient is in psychotherapy, then he or she tries to learn such coping techniques and inserts it into their daily life. If a patient doesn’t try to get better, the chances are he or she won’t. Therefore, there are a variety of treatment plans, but the treatment of an individual relies solely on the individual themselves.

PTSD can be challenging to manage as well as to treat; however, if you seek help instead of avoiding the issue, you’ll benefit from modern medicine. Live happy today!