What is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a psychological and physical condition that is caused by experiencing or witnessing traumatic events, like military combat, serious road accidents, natural disasters, violent deaths or violent assaults. It does not normally happen after experiencing upsetting situations like job losses.
How common is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?
Post-traumatic stress disorder affects up to 30% of people who experience a traumatic event. Around 40% of the people suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder developed the condition after someone close to them died suddenly.
What are the symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?
The nature and severity of post-traumatic stress disorder can vary between individual sufferers. The main symptoms include re-experiencing, avoidance, hypervigilance and emotional numbing. Other common symptoms include depression, anxiety and phobias, drug or alcohol abuse and unexplained physical symptoms.
These symptoms usually develop immediately after the event, but sometimes the onset can be delayed.
How is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder treated?
Treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder usually includes seeing a mental health specialist, like a counsellor, a psychologist, a community psychiatric nurse or a psychiatrist. There are also medicines that can be prescribed to adults suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.
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