Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a particular set of reactions that can develop in people who have been through a traumatic event which threatened their life or safety, or that of others around them. This could include physical or sexual assault / childhood abuse, a car accident or other serious accident, war or torture, and natural disasters such as bushfire or floods. Typically as a result of these events, the person will experience intense feelings of horror, fear and / or helplessness.
There are heightened rates of PTSD amongst emergency first responders and service men and women in the armed forces.
There are four typical indicators experienced by people with PTSD, often including feelings of panic or extreme fear similar to what they felt during the original traumatic event:
- Re-living the traumatic event – The person re-lives the event through unwanted and recurring memories, often in the form of vivid images and nightmares. There may be intense emotional or physical reactions, such as sweating, heart palpitations or panic when reminded of the event.
- Being overly alert or wound up – The person experiences sleeping difficulties, irritability and lack of concentration, becoming easily startled and constantly on the lookout for signs of danger.
- Avoiding reminders of the event – The person deliberately avoids activities, places, people, thoughts or feelings associated with the event because they bring back painful memories.
- Feeling emotionally numb – The person loses interest in day-to-day activities, feels cut off and detached from friends and family, or feels emotionally flat and numb.
It’s not unusual for people with PTSD to experience other mental health problems at the same time as PTSD, such as depression, anxiety, and alcohol or drug use. This is even more likely to occur if PTSD has persisted for a long time.
If you recognise the signs or symptoms of PTSD in yourself, or someone you love,or request a today for a confidential discussion about how the unique Solothurn model with its blend of evidence-based treatments and beautiful farm setting can help.