Post Traumatic Stress Disorder(PTSD) occurs when the effects of an undesirable experiences of an event is felt long after the event has passed. The event can be a personal one or the one that affects many people of a particular area. It is different from the common fears.
The very phrase ‘Post Traumatic Stress Disorder’ says that it is the stress one faces after a traumatic experience. According to Lenore Terr, trauma can be divided into two broad categories.
Type 1 trauma and Type 2 trauma. Type 1 trauma is a single event experienced by the individual (example-a single rape episode). Type 2 trauma is when the individual is exposed to prolonged trauma (example-extensive child abuse).
The person suffering from PTSD can mentally re-experience the event during his or her sleep or while he/she is awake. It often takes the person to a flashback and he or she might suffer from ‘survivor’s guilt’ thinking “Why am I still alive?” and other thoughts that force him/her to regret. Anger,anxiety and frustration are common during PTSD.
PTSD is not a weakness, it is a stage one goes through and can be experienced by anyone.Anything related to the traumatic experience ( any object or anniversary of the incident ) can stimulate negative feelings in the person. PTSD is of various types and may also lead to depression. One may feel disconnected and cut off from the present while suffering from PTSD. During PTSD, negative thoughts are triggered by one’s response to the event. PTSD might occur immediately after the event or or after a span of a few months.Many people get addicted to alcohol or smoking while suffering from PTSD.
PTSD can happen after witnessing/knowing about or experiencing:
* Domestic violence
* Loss of a near one
* Being a victim of torture
* Natural or manmade disaster
* Childhood abuse
* Loss of property
Research shows that trauma has a negative effect on physical health. People with PTSD are more likely to experience a number of physical health problems like:
* Respiratory system related problems *Diabetes
* Digestive problems
* Reproductive system related problems
* Chronic fatigue syndrome
These people often find it difficult to take decisions,trust others,face new situations, talk to strangers and often face sleep disorder. It has also been observed that they try to harm themselves without the intention of committing suicide.
There are many kinds of therapies and approaches for treating PTSD. Counseling steps in here. Through the counselling sessions, one suffering from PTSD can see the changes and the sessions encourage him/her to re-live a normal life by coming out of the traumatic experience. PTSD can be treated successfully!