How do you know if you need PTSD Treatment?
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder- PTSD
PTSD is an Abbreviation of Post traumatic stress disorder is an anxiety disorder that occurs due to stressful, frightening or distressful events such as death of beloved one, sexual assault (Rape or child Abuse), Natural disasters, threat to a personal life, serious accident, terrorist incident etc. PTSD may disturb your thoughts, feelings and emotions and dreams. PTSD may have flashbacks and Nightmares or intrusive memories. PTSD Treatment PTSD Treatment PTSD Treatment
SIGNS OF PTSD:
- Stressful dreams and nightmares
- Recurrent distress flashbacks
- Physical and emotional disturbance due to recalling that event.
- Extreme physical reactions of recalling that event e.g. Nausea, sweetening, increased heart rate.
- Feeling Isolated
- Feeling detached from loved ones
- Avoiding that certain people, situations, activities and events.
- Difficulty in sleeping
- Difficulty in concentrating
- Shame and Guilt
- Suicidal thoughts
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Diagnosis of PTSD:
To be diagnosed as PTSD, a person must have following Symptom for at least one month.
- At least one or more re-experiencing symptom
- At least one or more avoidance symptom
- At least two arousal and reactivity symptoms
- At least two thinking and mood symptoms
- Flash backs
- Frightening thoughts
- Avoiding places, events, people and things that are reminders of traumatic events.
- Avoiding thoughts of feelings related to the traumatic events. PTSD Treatment
Arousal and reactivity symptoms
- Difficulty in sleeping.
- Having anger outbursts.
- Feeling tense and anxious
Thinking and mood symptoms
- Negative thoughts
- Guilt or blame
- Lack of interest.
Symptoms of PTSD in Children:
Symptoms of PTSD in children are different than adults. The symptoms different ages are following:
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Less than 6 years:
- Wetting the bed after having learned to use the toilet
- unable to talk or less talkative.
- Over react on a scary event during playtime
- clingy with a parent or closed ones.
Between 5 to 12 years:
- Express that trauma through play.
- May have nightmares.
- Irritable mood and behaviours.
- Difficulty in studying and going out with friends.
Between 12 to 18 years:
- Aggressive behaviour
Symptoms of children with Sexual Abuse:
- Fear, Anxiety, Isolation.
- Unusual Sexual behaviour
- Hurt themselves
- Lack of self worth and self behaviour
- Lack of self Confidence
- Misuse of Alcohol or drugs.
Causes of PTSD : PTSD Treatment
- Serious Road Accident
- Prolonged Abuse
- Violent personal Assaults
- Terrorist Attacks
- Natural Disasters
- Rape or other type of Abuse
- Being a victim of crime
- Death or loss of loved ones
Risk Factors of PTSD:
- Increased risk of heart problems.
- Difficulty in relationships.
- Difficulty in work.
- Greater chance of Chronic disease.
- It can affect the brain structure that is decrease in the size of hippocampus
- It increases the stress hormone cortisol.
12 Coping Strategies of PTSD-PTSD Treatment
- Respect the trauma/tragedy. Acknowledge and be sensitive to the severity of the situation and how profoundly it affects everyone, but also determine how it is personally interpreted differently by each person with varied scenarios. PTSD Treatment
- Seek balance. It takes an equal and opposite action to balance the terrible trauma that has occurred. Start by replacing the past negative trauma that may plague you with present-centered positive deeds, thoughts, words and actions. PTSD Treatment
- Be compassionate. Always show kindness via a willing ear, sincere smile, make eye contact, learn first names, give a gentle touch or hug – all are simple healing balms.
- Promote community cooperative compassion. Help people form natural support groups with shared phone numbers and email contacts.
- Stay mentally and physically strong. Don’t succumb to the overwhelming negative situation. (See the link below for Phil’s TED Talk). It’s important to be solid when others need you the most.
- Don’t bring your own personal disaster to a societal disaster. As much as possible, put your personal feelings aside when you are helping others. You can become an emotional casualty yourself if you aren’t careful. PTSD Treatment
- Focus on solution, not the problem. Rather than focusing on the trauma (past negative), move forward slowly, carefully and deliberately away from the problem and toward the solution (future positive). Don’t become stuck in the past negative. Encourage selected present hedonism, fun activities as self-rewards.
- Honor and respect those who lost their lives or were injured. The best way to honor those who have died or have sustained a life-changing injury is to figure out how best to help those left behind, or all those whom you can help. PTSD Treatment
- Be aware of your limitations. Walk away if you find yourself slipping into exhaustion, depression or anxiety. Take care of yourself; you can’t help anyone if you aren’t feeling up to the job. Do seek professional help if your mental distress lasts more than a few days.
- Extend your empathy, not only the victims, but to their loved ones. Even harder is to show empathy toward the perpetrators who must learn to cope with their own guilt and other issues.
- Avoid judgmental attitudes, as well as generalizations toward ethnic and/or religious groups; focus on understanding, compassion and constructive actions.
- Encourage the faculties that promote everyday heroes – being socio-centric, optimistic, self-confident and practice being a “hero-in-training,” while challenging the negatives of egocentrism, cynicism, pessimism and public apathy.
How do you know if you have PTSD?
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders published by the American Psychiatric Association, after a traumatic event if you suffer from symptoms that include depression, anxiety, flashbacks, avoidance, isolation, difficulty falling and/or staying asleep, difficulty concentrating, irritability, an exaggerated startle response and hypervigilance, you may have Acute Stress Disorder (ASD). If these symptoms last longer than a month, then you may suffer from PTSD.
How can I help myself?
1.Get to know your triggers
You might find that certain experiences, situations or people seem to trigger flashbacks or other symptoms. These might include specific reminders of past trauma, such as smells, sounds, words, places or particular types of books or films. Some people find things especially difficult on significant dates, such as the anniversary of a traumatic experience.
2.Confide in someone PTSD Treatment
Lots of people who experience PTSD find it hard to open up to others. This may be because you feel unable to talk about what has happened to you. However, you don’t need to be able to describe the trauma to tell someone how you are currently feeling. PTSD Treatment PTSD Treatment PTSD Treatment PTSD Treatment
3.Give yourself time
Everyone has their own unique response to trauma and it’s important to take things at your own pace. For example, it may not be helpful to talk about your experiences before you feel ready. Try to be patient with yourself and don’t judge yourself harshly for needing time and support to recover from PTSD. PTSD Treatment
4.Try peer support PTSD Treatment
Peer support brings together people who have had similar experiences, which some people find very helpful.
Hope. There is always hope. With the right treatment and support, things will get better. I’m a living testament. PTSD Treatment
5.Find specialist support
You might find it useful to contact an organization that specializes in advice and support for PTSD. PTSD Treatment
6.Look after your physical health
Coping with PTSD can be exhausting. You might feel like you can’t find the energy to take care of yourself, but looking after your physical health can make a difference to how you feel emotionally. For example, it can help to:
- Think about your diet. Eating regularly and keeping your blood sugar stable can help you cope when things feel difficult.
- Try to exercise. Exercise can be really helpful for your mental wellbeing. PTSD Treatment
- Spend time outside. The outside world might feel overwhelming, but spending time in green space can boost your wellbeing.
- Avoid drugs and alcohol. While you might want to use drugs or alcohol to cope with difficult feelings, memories or physical pain, they can make you feel worse in the long run. They can also make other problems worse, such as difficulty sleeping. P PTSD Treatment PTSD Treatment PTSD Treatment
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