Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that some people develop over time after having experienced trauma. It is normal to experience nightmares, be extremely upset by bad memories, want to avoid reminders, feel sad and angry, and feel on guard after a trauma. When these symptoms persist over time is when it may turn into PTSD. There are so many factors that affect whether or not someone gets PTSD but the important thing to remember is that it is NOT a sign of weakness. Rather, it means your body is extra good at staying in survival mode. Therapy can help you learn to slow down that survival mode and begin to enjoy life again. You can learn more about PTSD here: https://www.ptsd.va.gov/…/PTSD-over…/basics/what-is-ptsd.asp
Let’s break down the name PTSD:
Post (meaning after)
traumatic (meaning a very stressful event)
stress (meaning it causes anxiety)
disorder (meaning you reacted to the event and struggle with it)
So another way to think of post-traumatic stress disorder is: after – stress – anxiety – reaction. This doesn’t sound as foreboding as post-traumatic stress disorder but still captures the essence of it. I also like to think of PTSD as a Normal Reaction to an Abnormal Event. It is important to remember that our mind and body is designed to survive and trauma kicks on our survival response. PTSD occurs when you struggle to turn off that natural trauma response in your regular day to day living. There are many trauma focused CBT treatments designed to help you learn to slow down your mind and body’s trauma response and move from automatically reacting to situations to choosing how you want to respond in situations.