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Do I Have PTSD? Recognizing the Effects of PTSD

  • Posted at Jun 24, 2022
  • Written by Rebecca
Do I Have PTSD? Recognizing the Effects of PTSD

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD, is a mental health condition that is developed as a result of experiencing a traumatic event or series of traumatic events. People who live with PTSD experience effects of trauma on a long-term basis that affect everyday life. However, treatment is available and successful in alleviating the severity and frequency of PTSD symptoms. But, first, identifying the effects of PTSD in one’s own life can help individuals come to accept that they may need help and start to search for the assistance they need from mental health specialists.

Symptoms of PTSD

Undoubtedly, recognizing the effects of PTSD means being able to identify PTSD symptoms. Symptoms of PTSD that last for an extensive period of time, like a few years, can be indicative of a PTSD diagnosis. So, being able to identify PTSD symptoms is important to determine if a person needs help to manage PTSD. Some of the common symptoms of PTSD can include:

  • Reliving the traumatic event or events through nightmares and flashbacks
  • Having difficulty sleeping or falling asleep
  • Unwanted and intrusive thoughts and memories of traumatic events
  • Emotional suffering due to flashbacks, unwanted thoughts, and nightmares of traumatic events
  • Avoiding talking about traumatic events
  • Avoiding participating in previously enjoyed activities
  • Negative self-image and feelings of shame/guilt
  • Inability to feel joy and happiness
  • Detaching from loved ones
  • Feelings of hopelessness about one’s worth
  • Developing a negative worldview
  • Startling or being fearful easily of noises, places, etc.
  • Difficulty focusing
  • Involuntary mood swings (usually anger)
  • Always having fear of danger – even when there is none present
  • Participating in dangerous activities like drug abuse, unprotected sex, etc.
  • Suicidal thoughts or ideation

How PTSD Symptoms Change Over Periods of Time

PTSD is a progressive disorder, which means symptoms can get worse over time. For many people living with PTSD, symptoms can get worse during times of increased stress and anxiety. And, when triggers of traumatic events are experienced, like running into people, places, or things that can force a person to relive a traumatic memory. So, if you feel that symptoms of trauma are getting worse or get worse when you experience specific triggers, this can indicate that you may have developed PTSD.

Recognizing Suicidal Thoughts and Ideation

People who are living with PTSD have a risk of committing suicide. So, it’s imperative that people living with PTSD can identify when they are living with symptoms of PTSD that include suicidal thoughts and ideation. Medical and mental health help can assist individuals living with PTSD overcome suicidal thoughts, ideation, and plans of suicide. This way, these individuals can be safer and protect their lives. Some things you can do as a person living with the effects of trauma who has identified suicidal ideation or thoughts can include:

  • Reaching out to supportive loved ones for a listening ear and support
  • Contacting supportive individuals in the community like a pastor or religious leader
  • Finding help through a mental health specialist or provider like Yellowbrick

Getting Treatment for the Effects of PTSD

People living with the effects of PTSD don’t have to go about doing so alone. Plus, the effects of PTSD can get better with self-care learned through treatment initiatives such as therapy. Yellowbrick offers therapeutic tools and care on an outpatient basis for people living with the debilitating symptoms of PTSD. Find out more about our PTSD program on our website today.

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