Trauma and PTSD
Have you, or someone you love: Been through combat? Lived through a disaster? Been raped? Experienced any other kind of traumatic event? Have you ever thought that painful memories of that experience were still causing problems for you or a loved one? These types of events can create the experience of trauma and PTSD. You may have heard of PTSD—posttraumatic stress disorder—on the news or from friends and family, and wondered what it is, or whether you or someone you know has it. This booklet will help you understand what PTSD is. You’ll learn how to get help for yourself, a friend, or a family member. It includes stories from people who have gotten help for their PTSD and have returned to their normal lives, activities, and relationships.The important thing to remember is that effective treatment is available. You don’t have to live with your symptoms forever.
What is Trauma and PTSD?
Posttraumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, can occur after someone goes through, sees, or learns about a traumatic event like: combat exposure; life threatening event; child sexual or physical abuse; terrorist attack; sexual/physical assault; serious accident; or a natural disaster. Most people have some stress-related reactions after a traumatic event. If your reactions don’t go away over time and they disrupt your life, you may have PTSD.
How Common Is Truma and PTSD?
Many Americans have had a trauma involving threat to life. About 60% of men and 50% of women experience at least one traumatic event. Of those who have experienced such a trauma, about 8% of men and 20% of women will develop PTSD. For some events, like combat and sexual assault, more people develop PTSD. PTSD is even more common in certain high risk occupations, like convenience store clerks, bank tellers, law enforcement officers and others whose occupations place their lives at risk.
Common Stress Reactions
It is normal to have stress reactions after a traumatic event. Your emotions and behavior can change in ways that are troubling to you.
Trauma and PTSD: Fear and anxiety
In moments of danger, our bodies prepare to fight our enemy, flee the situation, or freeze in the hope that the danger will move past us. But those feelings of alertness may stay even after the danger has passed. You may feel tense or afraid, be agitated and jumpy, feel on alert, experience sadness or depression
Sadness after a trauma may come from a sense of loss—of a loved one, of trust in the world, faith, or a previous way of life. You may have crying spells, lose interest in things you used to enjoy, want to be alone all the time, feel tired, empty or numb.
Trauma and PTSD: Guilt and shame
You may feel guilty that you did not do more to prevent the trauma. You may feel ashamed because during the trauma you acted in ways that you would not otherwise have done. You may feel responsible for what happened, guilty because others were injured or killed and you survived.
Trauma and PTSD: Anger and irritability
Anger may result from feeling you have been unfairly treated. Anger can make you feel irritated and cause you to be easily set off. You may lash out at others, have less patience, or overreact to minor events or small misunderstandings.
Trauma and PTSD: Behavior changes
You may act in unhealthy ways. You may drink, use drugs, smoke too much, drive aggressively, neglect your health and avoid certain people or situations.
Most people will have some of these reactions at first, but they will get better at some time. If symptoms last longer than three months, cause you great distress, or disrupt your work or home life, you should seek help.
Because our treatment for PTSD and anxiety programs rely on evidence based practices, our Intensive Outpatient Program shares many common methods with other successful treatment methods. The foundation of our treatment program for relies on the principles of the stages of change, cognitive behavioral therapy, solution focused treatment, skills training and identifying repetitive dysfunctional behavioral relationship patterns to promote recovery from depression and other mental health disorders. In fact, our Intensive Outpatient Program in Memphis, TN that has been proven to be effective in the treatment of these disorders in six peer reviewed treatment outcome studies.
Our treatment center provides services to those who need more treatment than one hour a week, but less than 24 hour care, by providing three hours of treatment per day, three to five days per week, in an intensive outpatient setting. It is also important to keep in mind that women and men often experience PTSD and depression differently and therefore the presence of PTSD and depression may also appear differently based on gender. If you or a loved one is showing signs of PTSD, anxiety or depression, they should be assessed by a trained mental health professional who can help design a treatment plan for depression that can result in recovery. Treatment for depression and anxiety can be highly successful. People who have completed our program have provide very high consumer satisfaction scores and reviews. Call us at 901-682-6136 to schedule an appointment.