PTSD, Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome, is a reality and is not understood by many. It is a mental health condition that can be triggered by experiencing or witnessing something traumatic. Many people think PTSD as a disorder that only military veterans deal with, but it also occurs in reaction to other distressing events like sexual violence, physical assault, emotional abuse, a robbery, sudden death of a loved one, terrorist attack, or a natural disaster.

According to the National Center for PTSD, it is estimated that 7 to 8% of the U.S. population will have PTSD in their lifetime. Women are more likely to get it than men. 

Symptoms of PTSD may include vivid flashbacks, nightmares, avoidance of anything or anyone that reminds them of the trauma, difficultly sleeping, irritability, being easily startled, and feelings of numbness.

Nicole Pajer has written an article about some of the MYTHS about PTSD. They are:

  1. PTSD affects only people in the military.
  2. You can’t live a normal life with PTSD.
  3. Everyone experiences PTSD in some way.
  4. People with PTSD are “ticking time bombs”.
  5. Protecting someone with a PTSD from a trigger is beneficial.
  6. If someone appears healthy, they’re probably over PTSD.
  7. Triggers aren’t a big deal.
  8. Triggers are glaringly obvious.
  9. PTSD shows up right after a traumatic event.
  10. Living with PTSD makes a person weak.

People with the PTSD disorder offer these directives to those interested:

  1. Instead of always trying to “fix us,” we just want you to listen
  2. Please don’t tell us to “just get over it.”
  3. Be patient with us — and yourself — when we’re experiencing it.
  4. Consider attending a therapy session with us to better understand what we’re going through.
  5. When we’re having a bad day, know that it’s not your fault.
  6. Try to understand our fears instead of writing them off as “irrational.”
  7. Don’t rush us to move through the trauma.
  8. Ask how you can help us feel safe.
  9. Know that we each have different ways of coping with the disorder.
  10. Don’t forget to take care of yourself, too.

Respected Reader, having PTSD or being involved with someone suffering from this disorder is complicated and challenging. It is important to get quality on point guidance regarding PTSD for its impact is significant!

P.S. FYI: Recently saw a “60 Minutes” program that highlighted a new experimental intervention for those suffering from PTSD. It is called SGB (Stellate Ganglion Block). It appears to be successful for many suffering from this brain malfunction. 

— Dr. Stathas can be reached at 706-473-1780. Email: jstathas13@gmail.com. Web site: drstathas.googlepages.com. Blog: drstathas.com. Book: “A Successful Life – Guaranteed!” on Amazon.

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