Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) affects nearly 5.2 million Americans each year; if you have PTSD, you likely experience fear, anxiety, mistrust, flashbacks, loss of interest in activities, insomnia or nightmares, emotional detachment, unwanted thoughts, and more. These symptoms can be very distressing, making everyday tasks difficult. Thankfully, there are many treatment options for PTSD if you haven’t sought them out already – they can be greatly beneficial in reducing some of the symptoms you are experiencing.
Aside from physical and emotional reactions to PTSD, there are facts that many aren’t aware of. According to the Nebraska Department of Veteran’s Affairs, there are 3 main clusters of experiences that people with PTSD have:
- Re-experiencing symptoms – this occurs when someone relives a traumatic event through memories, and most often it happens unexpectedly and may even feel real to the person. Certain sights, sounds, or smells may take a person mentally back to a horrific event.
- Avoidance and numbing symptoms – many people with PTSD seek to avoid any triggers that could bring them back to reliving the traumatic event. For instance, a person may avoid going to a place, listening to certain songs and avoiding certain smells that could trigger their memory. Others may become emotionally “numb” and may isolate themselves from others to avoid feeling pain from the event.
- Arousal symptoms – increased emotional arousal may include difficulty sleeping, outbursts of anger, irritability, difficulty concentrating, and constantly feeling paranoid or “on guard” after a traumatic event.
The Sidran Institute for Traumatic Stress Education and Advocacy also notes that contrary to widespread belief, PTSD can occur between 3 months and several years after a person has experienced a traumatic event. If you are distressed from PTSD that feels “unwarranted” or “random”, do not panic. Many people with PTSD feel symptoms long after the event has passed because the mind and body are still recovering from the event and, in some ways, that event has changed you.
Recovery is possible from PTSD, and there are many treatment methods that you can engage in, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy, to help you learn valuable techniques towards reducing the symptoms you are experiencing. Much of what you need to go through involves reframing your perspective on the traumatic event and who you are from it. You are not defined by your trauma and you are a full person who can live a healthy, positive, productive life. Seek help today.
Simple Recovery is a world-renowned, California state-licensed substance abuse recovery treatment center in Huntington Beach, CA. If you struggle with PTSD and substance abuse, make the decision to take back control over your life by seeking help. Call us today at 888-743-0490 for a consultation. Now is your time.