Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder In War Veterans


Source: sott.net

With decades long conflicts in the Middle East, a large number of military veterans are coming home with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).For the past years, a significant increase was seen in the number of Afghanistan and Iraq war veterans seeking professional help for PTSD. PTSD is not exclusively seen in military personnel and veterans, in fact, it affects about eight million Americans in a given year but the circumstances of military veterans hinders them for receiving the appropriate treatment.

Effects Of PTSD On The Brain

      

Source: shimisoku.biz

Changes in the Hippocampus

The hippocampus is the area of the brain that regulates happiness, joy, hunger, and it also regulates memories. Without the hippocampus, the brain would be unable to distinguish time frames for memories, as it aids in differentiating what memories took place in the past and what is happening in the present.

When PTSD occurs, the stress that takes place alters the hippocampus by killing cells, causing it to become less effective. In this weakened state, the hippocampus has trouble identifying what memories occurred in the past and which memories occur in the present. Because of this, flashbacks and memories that flood the brain cause the patient to believe that they are reliving their traumatic event.