What is PTSD?

PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder, is a mental health condition that can occur after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event. Symptoms of PTSD can include flashbacks, nightmares, anxiety, depression, and feeling disconnected or numb. If you have PTSD, you may feel like you’re in danger even when you’re not. You may avoid places or people that remind you of the trauma. You may also have trouble sleeping or concentrating.

PTSD can happen to anyone. It’s not just something that war veterans experience. People who have been through car accidents, natural disasters, sexual assault, or other traumas can all develop PTSD. If you think you might have PTSD, it’s important to seek help from a mental health professional.

Symptoms of PTSD

PTSD symptoms can be divided into four main categories: intrusive thoughts, avoidance, negative changes in thinking and mood, and changes in physical and emotional reactions.

Intrusive thoughts are one of the most common symptoms of PTSD. If you have PTSD, you may relive the trauma over and over again in your mind. This is known as a flashback. Flashbacks can be so realistic that they make you feel like you’re going through the experience again in real-time. You may also have nightmares about the event.

Avoidance is another common symptom of PTSD. You may try to avoid anything that reminds you of the trauma. This includes people, places, activities, objects, and situations. For example, if you were in a car accident, you may avoid getting in a car or even crossing the street because it reminds you of what happened.

Negative changes in thinking and mood are also common among people with PTSD. You may start to see yourself or the world around you in a negative light. You may lose interest in activities that you used to enjoy or become withdrawn from friends and family members. It’s common to feel isolated and alone when you have PTSD.

Changes in physical and emotional reactions are also common with this condition. You may be constantly on edge and always on the lookout for danger. This is known as hypervigilance. You may also startle easily or become irritated more easily than usual. Physical symptoms such as headaches and nausea are also common among people with PTSD.

If you think you might have PTSD, it’s important to reach out for help from a mental health professional who specializes in treating this condition. The sooner you get help, the better your chances are for recovery!