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.

In the Family – Helping A Loved One With PTSD

 

source: takemehomehuey.org

What to Expect

It’s important to remember that the behavior of someone who has PTSD is almost always plagued with symptoms that cause them to act much differently, often against their will. Remember to be patient and try your hardest not to become upset with a loved one who is experiencing Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Here are some symptoms and behaviors that are caused by PTSD that are commonly present and can alter your relationship with your loved one:

  •  Triggers that cause flashbacks, nightmares, and unwanted memories of the traumatic event in question (It’s important to be sensitive to these triggers and to help your loved one avoid or cope with them)
  •  Change in attitude towards you or someone they know, often caused by mistrust in others as the result of a traumatic event (Try and remember that it’s nothing personal, they simply have issues with trust after what they’ve been through)
  • Inability to talk about the traumatic event (Remember, try not to push them and wait until they’re ready to talk)
  • Extreme paranoia and loss of faith in the world (again, remember that it’s nothing personal)
  • Panic attacks or overwhelming fear

Resources For PTSD

 

Source: takemehomehuey.org

 Get Educated: Informational Literature

Learning as much as you can about Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder can dramatically increase the chances of recovery. By reading about PTSD, you’ll know what to expect from symptoms and behaviors, how to recover, treatment plans, and much more useful information. Here are some books that would be beneficial to read:

I Can’t Get Over It: A Handbook for Trauma Survivors, Aphrodite Matsakis, Ph.D. –A comprehensive guide to recovering from PTSD that includes coping mechanisms and helpful tips that aid in the road to recovery.

Suicide And Self Injury – The Risk Of PTSD

 

Source: verywell.com

 Suicide in PTSD Patients

Due to traumatic events, the onset of PTSD, and the possibility of co-occurring mental illnesses, PTSD patients are more susceptible to suicidal thoughts and tendencies. Studies have shown that the connection between PTSD and suicide is because of the guilt, sadness, shame, and other intense symptoms that come with PTSD and its possible coinciding conditions. Traumatic incidents are also the root of suicidal tendencies, especially when it causes the onset of PTSD. Many people don’t realize the severity of PTSD and how drastically it can increase the probability of suicide. Here are some statistics about PTSD related suicides.

The Overlap Of PTSD And Other Mental Illnesses

 

Source: sciencedaily.com

Similarity of Symptoms

The primary reason why PTSD often co-occurs with other mental disorders is because of the similarities between symptoms of PTSD and the symptoms of other typical mental illnesses. There are quite a lot of symptoms typically associated with PTSD that are also the typical symptoms of mental illnesses like depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and others.

PTSD From Combat

Symptoms of Combat PTSD

Source: thesurvivaldoctor.com

 

Combat Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder involves trauma as the result of extreme violence, whether that be being in a war, being the victim of gun violence, or other intense events. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder usually has similar symptoms across the board, regardless of what caused the disorder to develop. However, combat PTSD in particular has unique symptoms because of the unique and intense circumstances that led to the disorder.

Typical Therapies For PTSD

 

Source: www.ptsd.va.go

Overview

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder typically involves patients having to struggle and cope with flashbacks, nightmares, and unwanted memories from a traumatic experience. Thankfully, there are different kinds of therapies available that can help patients diagnosed with PTSD recover. Here are some of the usual symptoms that therapy aims to lessen or diminish entirely:

  • Depression
  • Guilt and blame
  • Unhealthy coping mechanisms such as drugs, alcohol, unprotected sex,    reckless behavior, and other damaging practices
  • Anxiety
  • Anger or irritability

What To Expect With PTSD

Typical Symptoms

If you or someone you care about is struggling with PTSD, it’s important to educate yourself about what kind of things will happen during recovery. This way, it can better prepare you and give you the tools and coping mechanisms that you need to deal with the disorder. Here are some of the most common and damaging symptoms involved in post-traumatic stress disorder:

Nightmares involving the traumatic event – triggers that cause flashbacks and unwanted memories that flood the brain. It’s helpful to identify these triggers as soon as possible to prevent flashbacks.

PTSD From Sexual Abuse

 

Source: ptsdtreatmenthelp.com

 

Sexual Abuse: The Facts

Sexual abuse affects people from all walks of life, but the most common demographics are women, children, and teenagers. Sexual abuse can cause Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in anyone who is a victim of it, but children and women are more susceptible to it. For children who develop PTSD, 10% are the result of sexual abuse. Women who have been raped, studies have shown that about 94% experience symptoms of PTSD. And chances are, those who experience PTSD resort to emotional and behavioral outlets that cause further harm, such as all sorts of addiction, such as alcohol, drugs, food, and would thus need more help dealing with the addiction aside from PTSD.