Have you ever watched shows that mention mental illness and wondered what PTSD is? Do you have loved ones with PTSD? Have you gone through trauma and sometimes wonder whether you yourself have PTSD? PTSD is not something to joke about, it is a serious hurdle in people’s lives, all the more reason we must talk and learn about it now.
Post-Traumatic Disorder or PTSD comes from trauma, a serious event that makes a person fear for their life. It can be caused by abuse, injuries, loss, violence, shootings, disasters, and much more. Events can be traumatic even if the person didn’t face the danger themselves. Seeing someone else hurt from violence can cause trauma. Hearing that someone close died suddenly or violently can turn into trauma too. The shock and pain of loss can turn into other mental illnesses such as depression or anxiety.
The people affected by PTSD come from a wide range of occupations and life experiences. Veterinarians, soldiers, and even doctors are susceptible to PTSD. However, it can affect children and adolescents as well. Children may have PTSD if their parents or family abused them both physically and mentally or had an incident that heavily affected their family. A fire or murder can completely change their way of life. Children and older youth may express signs of PTSD in a similar way. For example, both may play in a way that acts out the trauma as well.
Most people with PTSD may experience negative thoughts and feelings connected to their traumatic event. These thoughts and feelings may last many years after the trauma. They may experience the event again through flashbacks or nightmares, they may feel strong emotions, and they can become detached from others. “People with PTSD might avoid situations or people that remind them of that traumatic event, and they may have strong negative reactions to something as ordinary as a loud noise or an accidental touch,” says a writer from the American Psychiatric Association (APA). Since trauma is so raw and delicate, any stimuli that may trigger their memories can become detrimental to someone suffering from PTSD.
So, how do you cure PTSD? Even if PTSD is curable, it cannot be fixed instantly since it is deeply ingrained in a person. Trauma is hard to forget and even harder to heal. However, one should seek professional help, like consulting with a doctor or psychiatrist. They may also speak with a therapist. Therapists help you express your thoughts or “vent” out your feelings, and feel safe while doing it. People who suffer from this mental illness may also take pills to help suppress some of the effects of PTSD. It also helps greatly if there is somebody willing to listen and comfort them through their problems.
Before ending this discussion, I want to remind you that this article should not be used to self-diagnose yourself with PTSD. If you truly believe you may have PTSD, please seek professional help from a psychiatrist. You may choose to call this number from the Philippine Health Association Inc, (02) 8921-4958 from Monday-Fridays from 7AM-4PM, but if you prefer to text you may use this number: 09175652036.
People with PTSD struggle a lot. It affects a lot of people, and everyone can get PTSD. It is important to be respectful and patient with people who have these issues because they have experienced things you may have not. Although, if you do know how they feel, you should help them overcome what they are going through. Now, I have a question for you. Knowing this, do you think that you treat people well? Be careful with the words you use and with the thoughts you convey. Being patient and considerate is important if we do not want to harm the people we love.
American Psychiatric Association. (2022). What is posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)? https://www.psychiatry.org/patients-families/ptsd/what-is-ptsd
Mayo Clinic. (n.d.). Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/post-traumatic-stress-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20355967
Nemours Kids Health. (2021). Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/ptsd.html
Silakbo. (n.d.). Mental health resources. http://www.silakbo.ph/help/
Smith, K. (2019). PTSD in children and adolescents. Psycom. https://www.psycom.net/ptsd-in-children-and-adolescents