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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Dealing With Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) has the ability to develop after a traumatic event or experience which threatens your life or safety and leaves you feeling helpless. Most times after a traumatic event, people normally feel sad, anxious, frightened, or disconnected. These symptoms usually fad away after some time, but there are some who have found the trauma to be so overwhelming that they cannot return to their regular lives. People suffering for PTSD may have trouble reconnecting with others, even people in their own families, which can affect many types of relationships in their everyday lives. There is treatment available and with a little support and persistence, a person with PTSD can cope and move on with their life.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder can be commonly seen in individuals that have experienced a catastrophe, such as a natural disaster or war. It does not stop at people who are directly affected by such an event. It can also affect witnesses, bystanders, or people who help pick up the pieces after the traumatic event such as emergency workers and officers. It can affect people who were involved in an accident or attack, or even people who were abused and neglected. PTSD does develop differently in people and individuals all handle it in a different way. Because of this, it will take different measures for different people to overcome this disorder.
PTSD treatment options try to focus on overcoming the trauma one has experienced. By recalling the event, the person is taught to process the emotions and sensations properly to help restore a sense of control, which helps the individual regain power of their life. Some typical PTSD treatment options can include:
Trauma-Focused Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy- this type of therapy gradually exposes the individual to thoughts and feelings or situations that remind them of the traumatic event. Also, the idea is to replace distorted or irrational thoughts with balanced ideas that make sense in order for the individual to overcome fears and anxieties.
Family-Centered Therapy- family therapy has been seen to be very productive at overcoming PTSD. It helps by building communication and better relationships.
Medication/Prescriptions- many times a prescription is given to the individual to overcome secondary symptoms like anxiety and depression such as Prozac or Zoloft. While they do help alleviate the symptoms, they are not a cure and further treatment is still needed.
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing- this type of behavioral therapy is thought to work by using eye movements and other bilateral forms of stimulation to unfreeze the brain's information processing system which gets "frozen", or interrupted, during extreme stress like PTSD.
If you or someone you know needs PTSD treatment don't delay. Early recognition and treatment can make it easier to overcome this disorder. Do your research and find one of the many support groups available for PTSD.

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