PTSD is a serious condition that can have a profound impact on an individual’s life. It is characterized by symptoms of re-experiencing the traumatic event, avoidance of reminders of the event, and increased anxiety and arousal. While there is no known cure for PTSD, there are treatments available that can help lessen the symptoms and allow people to live relatively normal lives. In many cases, with proper treatment, people with PTSD are able to eventually recover from the condition.
A life threatening event. This includes a perceived-to-be life threatening event
PTSD does not go away on its own, and it can become worse over time if it is not treated. The best way to treat PTSD is to get help from a mental health professional who can provide therapy and medication.
Internal reminders of a traumatic event. These signs of trauma typically present as nightmares or flashbacks
It is not uncommon for people who have experienced a traumatic event to have persistent reminders of the event. These reminders can take the form of nightmares or flashbacks, and can be extremely distressing. In some cases, these reminders may lead to a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
It is believed that these persistent reminders occur because the brain is trying to process the trauma. The brain may replay the event over and over again in an attempt to make sense of it. For some people, this can be a helpful process that eventually leads to healing. For others, however, it can be extremely debilitating.
There are many different ways to cope with persistent reminders of a traumatic event. Some people find it helpful to talk about their experiences with a therapist or counselor. Others find relief in medication or alcohol abuse. It is important to find what works best for you and to avoid any coping mechanisms that might do more harm than good.
Avoidance of external reminders
Many people with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) try to avoid situations or things that remind them of their trauma. This can make it hard to carry on with your normal life.
For example, you may avoid places, people, objects, activities or thoughts that remind you of the trauma. You may also stop doing things you used to enjoy.
Avoidance can be a way of coping with PTSD symptoms. It can help you feel less anxious and stressed. But it can also make your symptoms worse in the long term.
If avoidance is stopping you from living your life, there are treatments that can help.
Altered anxiety state
An altered anxiety state is a condition in which a person experiences increased anxiety and fear. This can be caused by a variety of factors, including exposure to traumatic events, prolonged stress, or certain medical conditions. People with an altered anxiety state may feel on edge, have difficulty concentrating, and be easily startled. They may also experience physical symptoms such as racing heart, sweating, and trembling. While an altered anxiety state can be distressing, it is not usually dangerous. Treatment typically involves Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and/or medication.
Changes in mood or thinking
PTSD can lead to changes in a person’s mood and thinking. People with PTSD may become more irritable, anxious, or aggressive. They may have trouble sleeping or concentrating. Negative thoughts about themselves and the world around them are common. Some people with PTSD may turn to alcohol or drugs to try to cope with their symptoms.