What is PTSD?
PTSD is a group of symptoms following experiencing a traumatic event like death, serious injury, violence towards self or others. PTSD can happen after we've been through one traumatic event, or after repeated exposure to trauma.
It’s important to seek help to manage PTSD. There are effective treatments for PTSD, and you can feel better.
We all may be exposed to some degree of traumatic events and most of us can have a normal amount of fear, sadness and psychological distress. This may settle in time with supports from your loved ones.
However in PTSD can be a result of
It is a set of symptoms negatively impacting you and your family.
PTSD has four groups of symptoms
Re-experiencing the trauma which can include:
- distressing and ‘intrusive’ thoughts and memories
- flashbacks of the trauma
- severe reactions to things that remind us of the traumatic event
- reliving the event which then leads to a racing heartbeat, difficulty breathing.
Avoidance of Reminders may include:
Negative changes in thoughts and mood after the trauma with
- not being able to remember part of the traumatic event
- heightened sense of danger
- blaming yourself or others for the event or its aftermath
- feeling very down or numb
- feeling strong guilt, horror or anger
- being unable to enjoy things you used to find pleasurable
- feeling detached or ‘cut off’ from people.
Treatment of PTSD
Psychological treatment (talking therapy) designed for trauma is the most effective treatment for PTSD.
Trauma-focused cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)
Eye-movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR)
The most common type of medication used for PTSD is an antidepressant. This is usually a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI). An example of an SSRI is fluoxetine.
How can we help?We can help you with
- diagnosing PTSD
- Evidence based treatment of PTSD with psychological treatments and medications.
- treating comorbid depression or anxiety
- treating alcohol or drug issues
- keeping track of your physical health and any side effects of medication
- admitting you to hospital if required
- connecting you to community supports
PTSD the care you should expect.
We can offer DVA consults for Veterans with PTSD symptoms.
Recovery from PTSD
With proper treatment, about half of people diagnosed with PTSD will feel like they are back to normal within 3 months. Others may have symptoms for a year or more. A smaller group will live with some symptoms for the rest of their lives.