The Possible Effects of Post Traumatic Stress Essay

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The Possible Effects of Post Traumatic Stress

Post traumatic stress disorder is an anxiety disorder associated with serious traumatic events and characterized by such symptoms as survivor guilt, reliving the trauma in dreams, numbness and lack of involvement with reality, or recurrent thoughts and images. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) can develop at any age, including in childhood. Symptoms typically begin within 3 months of a traumatic event, although occasionally they do not begin until years later. Once PTSD occurs, the severity and duration of the illness varies. Some people recover within 6 months, while others suffer much longer.

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PTSD usually falls into three categories. These are; Intrusion, Avoidance and Hyperarousal. Intrusion involves the memories of the trauma reoccurring unexpectedly in the person. This will include flashbacks and will happen in sudden, vivid memories that are accompanied by painful emotions. It is common that the person suffering from intrusion will sometimes be so strong that they believe they are almost re experiencing the trauma again and seeing it unfold in their nightmares. A person suffering from avoidance will affect their relationship with others, including family members, partners and close friends etc. The person will feel numb at first and will have diminished emotions and can only complete routine, mechanical activities. The person will try to avoid situations or activities that are reminders of the original traumatic event because such exposure may cause symptoms to worsen. The final category is hyperarousal and this will cause the person to act as though they are constantly threatened by the trauma that caused their illness. The person may have difficulty in concentrating or remembering current information and can become suddenly irritable or explosive, even when not provoked. Finally, many people with PTSD also attempt to rid themselves of their painful re-experiences, loneliness, and panic attacks by abusing alcohol or other drugs as a "self medication"
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