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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
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Dealing with a mental health crisis or emergency - NHS
Stock Image. Nearly everyone will experience a range of reactions after trauma, yet most people will recover from those symptoms naturally. Those who continue to experience problems may be diagnosed with PTSD.
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People who have PTSD may feel stressed or frightened even when they are no longer in danger. Anyone can develop PTSD at any age. This includes war veterans as well as survivors of physical and sexual assault, abuse, car accidents, disasters, terror attacks, or other serious events. Not everyone with PTSD has been through a dangerous event. Some experiences, like the sudden or unexpected death of a loved one, can also cause PTSD.
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Women are more likely to develop PTSD than men. Some traumas may put an individual at a higher risk and biological factors like genes may make some people more likely to develop PTSD than others. Symptoms usually begin within 3 months of the traumatic incident, but sometimes they begin later. For symptoms to be considered PTSD, they must last more than a month and be severe enough to interfere with functioning in relationships or work.
The course of the illness varies from person to person.
Dealing with a mental health crisis or emergency
Some people recover within 6 months, while others have symptoms that last much longer. In some people, the condition becomes chronic ongoing. A doctor who has experience helping people with mental illnesses, such as a psychiatrist or psychologist, can diagnose PTSD. To be diagnosed with PTSD, an adult must have all of the following for at least 1 month:. Words, objects, or situations that are reminders of the event can also trigger re-experiencing symptoms.
Things or situations that remind a person of the traumatic event can trigger avoidance symptoms. These symptoms may cause a person to change his or her personal routine.
For example, after a bad car accident, a person who usually drives may avoid driving or riding in a car. Arousal symptoms are usually constant, instead of being triggered by something that brings back memories of the traumatic event. They can make the person feel stressed and angry. These symptoms may make it hard to do daily tasks, such as sleeping, eating, or concentrating. Cognition and mood symptoms can begin or worsen after the traumatic event.
These symptoms can make the person feel alienated or detached from friends or family members. Sometimes people have very serious symptoms that go away after a few weeks. This is called acute stress disorder, or ASD.
Guidelines for Interacting
PTSD is often accompanied by depression, substance abuse, or one or more anxiety disorders. Children and teens can have extreme reactions to trauma, but their symptoms may not be the same as adults. In very young children less than 6 years of age , these symptoms can include:. Older children and teens usually show symptoms more like those seen in adults. They may also develop disruptive, disrespectful, or destructive behaviors.
Older children and teens may feel guilty for not preventing injury or deaths. They may also have thoughts of revenge. It is important to remember that not everyone who lives through a dangerous event develops PTSD. In fact, most will recover quickly without intervention. Vivamus nisl sapien, faucibus vitae lobortis tincidunt, pulvinar eget justo. Fusce dapibus varius tempus. As a neighbor, co-worker, friend, or relative, you should be aware of the warning signs of a potentially abusive situation.
You may know someone who is a victim of domestic violence. They may be looking for someone to talk to and may have chosen you. Escape Page. Is Someone You Know in Danger? Do you notice a change in the behavior of someone you know?
Do they seem distant or isolated? Does a friend or relative seem to be cutting off contact with you? Do they seem unduly concerned with the approval of a partner?